Metal-CD-Review: GALDERIA – Rise, Legions Of Free Men (2010)

Country: France – Genre: Power Metal

1. The Awakening
2. Rise, Legions of Free Men
3. Seven Stars
4. Circle of Illusion
5. From Gaïa to Galderia
6. Land of Galderia
7. Verity

Foreword: The french Power Metal band Galderia has always been a little special. Especially to the ones who enjoy the genre, but also to their fans and generally interested listeners all over the world. And the reason for that may lay within the fact that the band members Seb, Tom, Verdo and J.C maintain a special bond to their fans and the Galderia-community. They are one of the very few bands out there that offer a huge selection of their music on their webpage – for free, without registration or any other inconveniences (click). 2010 has finally been the year for their first EP to be released, which could be bought directly via their site and Myspace; and now, since all copies have been sold – they published the whole EP on their Youtube-account. Once again – for free, and in a remarkable quality. I guess I do not have to explain why you should go and have a look for yourself. But what about the musical style and quality of Galderia ? Let us start with the review part of the 2010′ EP to finally see if they can really keep the spirit alive !

Review: First and foremost everyone that is potentially interested in the works of Galderia should know that they play a certain type of Power Metal – some might even say, a cliché-ridden. And it is no secret: those who cannot think of ever enjoying a certain ‚uplifting‘ metal style as it is played by bands like Freedom Call or Stratovarius – with tons of melody, ‚friendly‘ lyrics and a clearly singing lead singer – could be in the wrong place here. But all others will not only encounter a fantastical and fascinating musical universe, but also one of the best metal EP’s that has ever been released. And what would be better suited for a ‚proof‘ if not a very strong intro ? On this EP it is called The Awakening, a short piece that has only one aim; in which it definitely succeeds – it makes the audience lust for the things that are there to come. A nice production quality combined with a saturated sound impression, special sound samples in the background, ‚epic‘ lyrics and messages… and an extraordinary instrumental part towards the end. Everything works out – the intro is a piece that would not let any true Power Metal fan down (10/10).

Let us go on with the opener and title-track Rise, Legions Of Free Men. Here we have a 6-and-a-half minute Power Metal piece that seems to be bursting in terms of a certain delight in playing and an overall good mood – which is totally typical for Galderia. What definitely stands out us the nice structuring of the lyrical and instrumental passages, which leads to an impression of complexity and diversification on the one hand, but also to a remarkable catchyness on the other. Nice samples and uplifting lyrics, sometimes underlined by a small choir, are also contributing to the very good impression (10/10). Next on the list is Seven Stars, another 6-minute-piece full of euphoria – but this time the epic sounds are rather carried by a very speedy instrumental part with loads of double bass attacks. While the opener has rather been a mid tempo hymn, this one clearly shows that the guys of Galderia are also able to deliver remarkably fast songs without focusing too much on the double bass and drumming parts only – at times the song is interrupted by beautiful instrumental passages, more than just entertaining guitar and choir passages, or simply a great refrain which makes you want to sing along. And, when it comes to the final, lead singer Seb delivers an extraordinary high pitched scream for every lover of the genre – top notch (10/10).

Circle Of Illusion starts with nice singing and a soft instrumental part, just before the guitars join in and the instrumental begins to unfold in full density. Once again – this type of music makes you want to cheer, and this track is just another perfect example. Somehow balancing between this world and the infinite cosmos, Galderia manage to deliver outstanding songs in a perfect Power Metal manner – there just are no weak points (10/10). Then From Gaia To Galderia begins, and once more proves  that the band is able to produce very diversified instrumentals. This track somehow feels like the opener, but comes along with an even more emotional singing part and beautiful choir arrangements. A certain melancholy arises, resulting from the nicely played guitars and the gentle voice of Seb – merging in an epic refrain. But, this song indeed feels a little more ‚cheesy‘ than tolerable – especially in the verses, so for the first time not the highest rating (9/10). But fortunately we have Land Of Galderia as a follow up, a piece that is almost as cheesy as the one before – but this time the concept works out in terms of a ‚true‘ Power Metal. The guitars are stronger, the instrumental is heavier / faster, and the refrain marks another epic climax. Great guitar arrangements and a strong melodic aspect once again lead to a rating suitable for Galderia and their work (10/10). The outro comes along in form of a title called Verity, a very calm piece that could be interpreted as a true ballad. It is just a pleasure to hear – although it certainly is not a piece as spectacular or outstanding like the ones before (9/10).

Conclusion: 10/10’s almost everywhere (2 exceptions) – it is no longer a secret, Galderia DEFINITELY manage to keep the cosmic power alive with their very unique type of music. Their way of interpreting the Power Metal is just very enjoyable and uplifting in its total impression. Too bad that this ‚only‘ is an EP, but it seems like there is a full-length album in the making… in the mean time everyone should get a copy of this EP, or alternatively enjoy the tracks on their Youtube account. We are all part of a higher cosmic circle, and thankfully this band has the suitable music to lead us into the right direction.

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