Syu (シュウ, Shū) is a Japanese musician, best known as leader and guitarist of the metal band Galneryus. He also performs guitar and lead vocals in Spinalcord (formerly known as Aushvitz) and was formerly a member of Animetal. On September 29, 2010 he released a cover album named Crying Stars -Stand Proud!-, covering songs from Scorpions, Stratovarius, Yngwie Malmsteen, Skid Row, M.S.G., Racer X and more. It features some of his bandmates from Galneryus and Spinalcord, as well as other well-known musicians like Eizo Sakamoto (Anthem), whom Syu was in Animetal with.

Galneryus Syu.jpg
Syu performing with Galneryus in 2014
Background information
Born (1980-09-23) September 23, 1980 (age 39)
Ashiya, Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan
GenresHeavy metal, power metal, neo-classical metal, speed metal
Occupation(s)Musician, songwriter
InstrumentsGuitar, vocals, drums, piano, violin
Years active1996–present
Associated actsGalneryus, Spinalcord, Animetal, Valkyr, Cross-Large


Early lifeEdit

Syu, born in Kansai, Japan, first began playing violin at the age of 6 years, and he also played piano. He continued playing violin until he was 12–13 years old. While in the fourth grade of elementary school, Syu discovered a passion for drums, which was fuelled by listening to X Japan. He says he found it easy to change from violin to guitar because they have similarly styled movements and finger patterns. He continued playing the drums for the band Cross-Large, but enjoyed the guitar more, as it was easier and he could better express himself through guitar than through drums. He soon gave up drums altogether, when he couldn't find good band members to play with.


Syu joined visual kei band Valkyr in August 1998, nearly a year later they released their first demo tape, titled "Love of Insanity". In August 2000, they released a "making of" VHS. In 2001 they finally released their first single, "Batta". After releasing 5 demos, a single and a VHS, the band broke up on April 24, 2002.


During his time with Valkyr he also formed the band Galneryus, which was a power metal band that he started with famous singer Yama-B. He started this band whilst he was living in Kujo, Osaka and heard him singing on the radio. Then they began working together as they were from the same area and made Galneryus. They hired support musicians A on Keyboards (who had previously played with Syu on Valkyr), Shôgo Himuro on Bass, and Toshihiro Yui (formerly of Cemetery, Honey Quest) on Drums. They went on to release a 2-track demo titled "United Flag". After playing live for a long time, they went back to record their second EP Rebel Flag with the independent label Iron Shock, with Yoshinori Kataoka on keyboards (replacing A).

In 2002, Galneryus were signed to VAP, and began work on the first full-length album titled The Flag of Punishment. They released their next album, Advance to the Fall, in 2005. They then released their third album Beyond the End of Despair... in 2006. In 2007 they returned again with their fourth full-length album One For All – All For One. In 2008 they released their fifth album, Reincarnation, this would be the last album with Yama-B on vocals, as he decided to leave. He was replaced by Masatoshi "Sho" Ono and in 2010 they released their sixth full-length album, aptly titled Resurrection.


While he was still in the early days with Galneryus, Syu started another side project, with former fellow Valkyr member Kyoichi, called Aushvitz in 2002, in which he plays guitar and also does the main vocals. This style is much darker than his other projects. They released their first single, "Akarui" in September that year. They went on a very slow pace and went silent for a long time, but announced in 2006 that they were coming back as trio with Galneryus drummer Junichi. In the summer of 2008, Aushvitz was renamed Spinalcord and released their first maxi-single "The Spinalcord" on December 25, 2008. On April 4, 2009 they released their second maxi-single "Spinalcord 2". On September 23, 2009 they released their debut album Remember Me'Til Your Dying Day. With the change in the band's name also came a change in direction, which besides the old style now also incorporates a more popular style.

Animetal and other workEdit

In 2003, Syu joined Animetal as their new guitarist. He recorded five full-length albums with them before they went on indefinite hiatus in 2006.

Syu contributed significantly to the first solo album by Rami, 2016's Aspiration.[1]

Style and influencesEdit

Syu's style of playing has been likened to that of Yngwie Malmsteen[2] and many neo-classical guitarists. Syu himself lists some of his influences as: Kyoji Yamamoto, John Petrucci,[3] Ulrich Roth,[2] Gary Moore,[3] Paul Gilbert and Michael Schenker.[3] He has also stated that hide and X influenced him greatly.[3][4]


Syu has a signature series of guitars available from ESP Guitars available from the ESP Japan website.[5]

Signature ESP GuitarsEdit

  • ESP Crying Star Phoenix
  • ESP Crying Star Seven
  • ESP Crying Star Classic
  • ESP Crying Star Rebel

Other guitarsEdit

  • ESP Crying Star (Seymour Duncan JB jr + Seymour Duncan JB)
  • ESP Crying Star (EMG SAV + EMG SAV)
  • ESP Crying Seven (24 Frets + EMG 707 + 707)
  • ESP Crying Seven (24 Frets + Seymour Duncan SH-1N-7 + SH5-7)
  • ESP Crying Seven (24 Frets + Seymour Duncan SH5-7)
  • ESP MV (Syu Custom)
  • ESP M-SEVEN (Syu Custom)
  • ESP EX-280 (Syu Custom)
  • Edwards E-EX-138
  • Edwards E-FV-80D (Syu Custom)
  • Edwards E-SE-87R/LT (Syu Custom)
  • Edwards E-CS-160 (Crying Star)
  • Ovation Steel String Acoustic Guitar


  • Maxon OD 808 Overdrive
  • Boss GT-10
  • Boss GT-8
  • Boss ME-70
  • Boss ME-20
  • Boss ME-25
  • Boss SD1 Super Overdrive Pedal
  • Roland GR-55 Guitar Synthesizer
  • Boss ST2
  • Boss Dyna Drive
  • Boss PS6 Harmonist
  • Boss Blues driver
  • Boss Chromatic Tuner
  • Boss Noise Gate
  • Vox V847 wah-wah pedal effect
  • MXR ZW-44 Overdrive pedal
  • Ibanez Tubescreamer TS-9
  • Digitech iPB-10
  • Various other Boss and other brand compact pedals


Syu has used:


Cover AlbumEdit

  • Crying Stars -Stand Proud!- (September 29, 2010)
  1. "Street Lethal" – Racer X
  2. "The Damnation Game" – Symphony X
  3. "Silverwing" – Arch Enemy
  4. "Never Die" – Yngwie J. Malmsteen
  5. "We'll Burn the Sky" – Scorpions
  6. "Alone" – Heart
  7. "Against the Wind" – Stratovarius
  8. "Thought of a Dying Atheist" – Muse
  9. "Red Sky" – Michael Schenker Group
  10. "I Remember You" – Skid Row
  11. "The Spirit Carries On" – Dream Theater
  12. "Only for the Weak" – In Flames


  • Syu – guitar on all tracks, vocals on tracks 8 & 12, chorus on tracks 1, 2 & 7, "throat" on tracks 3, 8 & 12, voice on track 4
  • Masatoshi "Sho" Ono (Galneryus) – vocals on tracks 4, 5, 7, 10 & 11, chorus on track 1
  • Taka (Galneryus) – bass on tracks 2, 7, 10 & 11
  • Junichi (Galneryus, Spinalchord, Concerto Moon) – drums on tracks 7, 8, 11 & 12
  • Yuhki (Galneryus) – keyboards on tracks 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 11 & 12
  • Eizo Sakamoto (Animetal, Anthem) – vocals on tracks 1 & 9
  • Masaki (Animetal, Canta, Zigoku Quartet) – bass on tracks 1 & 9
  • Katsuji Kirita (Animetal, Gargoyle, The Cro-Magnons) – drums on tracks 1, 2, 9 & 10
  • Kyoichi (Valkyr, Spinalchord) – bass on tracks 8 & 12
  • Nov (Aion, Zigoku Quartet) – vocals on track 2
  • Raiden Yuzawa (Canta, Seikima-II) – drums on tracks 5 & 6
  • Kenjirou Murai (Cycle, ex:Sex Machineguns, Cali Gari) – bass on tracks 3, 4, 5 & 6
  • Joe (Cycle, ex:Sex Machineguns) – drums on tracks 3 & 4
  • Panther (Cycle, ex:Sex Machineguns) – guitar on track 3's 2nd solo and harmony solo
  • Leda (Undivide, ex:Deluhi, ex:Galneryus as Yu-To) – guitar on tracks 1's harmony solo and 2nd solo
  • Ruiza (D) – guitar on track 8's first solo
  • Akane Liv (Liv Moon) – vocals on track 6

Instrumental Solo AlbumEdit


  1. ^ "RAMI - Aspiration". Retrieved 2018-11-29.
  2. ^ a b Exclusive interview with Syu
  3. ^ a b c d Galneryus im Ohanami Interview & #Fanfaces! (English translation inside!)
  4. ^ "hide Memorial Part Two". Retrieved 2012-07-25.
  5. ^ "ESP | ARTIST CUSTOM GUITARS | SYU". Retrieved 2019-02-03.
  1. Galneryus VAP profile
  2. Valkyr JaME Profile
  3. JaME Interview with Syu

External linksEdit