Saeko is the Japanese singer Saeko Kitamae who moved to Germany in 2003 to begin a career as a heavy rock vocalist and released two albums under the Saeko name with very able support from the likes of Lars Ratz and Michael Ehré (Metalium) and Sven Lüdke (Mob Rules). She achieved some success and no little fame before returning to Japan due to ‘cultural issues’ but has now returned to continue her career.
Saeko must have pressed all of the correct buttons to garner the attention of musicians from Metalium and Mob Rules and she stills seems to have a golden touch as she has retained Michael Ehré (drums) Lars Ratz (bass) and also brought in guitarist Guido Benedetti (Trick Or Treat) and bassist Alessandro Sala (Rhapsody Of Fire) plus guests in Derek Sherinian (Sons of Apollo, ex-Dream Theater) and Lars Ratz (ex-Metalium). Sadly, Ratz died earlier this year in a light aircraft accident in Spain, RIP. Saeko Kitamae also plays keyboards as well as singing and sharing the song writing duties with Benedetti.
It seems that Saeko is also something of a spiritual lady and likes a concept album too as Holy Are We Alone concerns a spirit reincarnated across the world whilst looking for the answers to life and it appears that this storyline is also a continuation on the two previous albums. I have not heard the earlier albums but what we have here is an ambitious work with Saeko exploring divinity and folk histories and to emphasise the worldwide nature of the album she introduces lyrics in English, Japanese, German, Hawaiian and Sanskrit so she is really living her music!
The album flits between classic and power metal with some excellent musicians giving perfect performances with Saeko introducing a touch of the exotic east into her delivery. She reminds me a little of Doro Pesch in both style and substance with Holy Are We Alone being an interesting rock album that many will find intriguing and a welcome return from a colourful character.
Holy Are We Alone track list
- Circle Of Life (1:03)
- Japan: In My Dream (5:56)
- Syria: Music, My Love (5:32)
- UK: Never Say Never (5:26)
- Germany: Rebellion Mission (8:12)
- India: Farewell To You I (From Father To Son) (6:12)
- Brazil: Splinters Of The Sun (5:38)
- Hawaii (USA): Farewell To You Ii (From Mother To Daughter) (4:15)
- Russia: Heroes (5:25)
- Holy Are We Alone (1:29)