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BanG Dream! Girls Band Party! Roselia Stage Vol. #01 Manga Review

8 min read
If you're a Bandori or Roselia fan, you should give this manga a read!

The birth of the greatest band!

Creative Staff
Original Content: Craft Egg/BUSHIROAD
Story & Art: Dr pepperco
Translation: Katie Kimura
Lettering: Vibrraant Publishing Studio

What They Say:
After her father’s dreams of making it big in the music industry crumble beneath the strain of trying to appease both his managers and his fans, singer Yukina Minato is determined to make him proud by forming the “perfect band” of her own. But first, she’ll have to find all the right members. They’ll need unparalleled skill, passion, and drive if they’re going to succeed as a J-rock band in such a crowded scene!

Future World Fes is the biggest music event of the year, a world-famous spectacular that showcases only the best of the best. ​Do five high school girls have what it takes to rock their competition and secure a spot on the main stage?

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
The only thing on Yukina Minato’s mind is her singing and music. Her dedication to her craft is admirable but sometimes you’ve just got to have some fun! And that’s exactly what her childhood friend, Lisa Imai, is trying to do. But Yukina doesn’t have time for fun. She’s too focused on achieving her goal of making it to the Future World Fes. But she needs a band of at least three members before that can happen. Lisa already knew this though. Why wouldn’t she? They’ve been friends for a long time. Yukina claims she needs to do this for her father. Cue flashback! Yukina’s dad was in a band and she loved his music. She thought he was coolest! Adorable. Lisa was also along for the ride. Heck, Yukina’s dad even taught Lisa how to play the bass a little bit. Papa Minato’s band grew in popularity and they eventually made their major debut. They were going to Future World Fes! It was like a dream come true. If only it had stayed that way. Essentially, the record label wanted them to change their music and sell out. Yukina’s dad refused. He wanted to play HIS music. I respect that. Sadly, this decision ultimately ended his music career.

Back to the present! Yukina cannot let go of what happened to her dad. That’s why she’s doing all of this for him. Is she really though? Lisa thinks differently. She cares about Yukina and has been watching over her all this time. She wants to see her smile again! Lisa is a true friend. But Yukina doesn’t need to smile or have fun. She just needs to create the perfect band with no compromises. She will make the world acknowledge her father’s music. No, she will make the world acknowledge HER music! I can’t say that I’m not a bit envious of that level of determination. Later that night, a guitarist catches Yukina’s attention at the live house. The guitarist in question is Sayo Hikawa. Yukina was impressed by her guitar playing. She’d be perfect for her band. Unfortunately, she’s already a band. Well, she was. She’s kicked out of her band because she’s too fixated on her music and doesn’t care about having fun. Hey, that sounds like Yukina! Yukina approaches Sayo about forming a band with her. They both think alike so it should work out. Sayo is convinced. She’s been in a lot of bands and they’ve never had the drive. She’s tired of wasting time. She wants to make it to Future World Fes. See? These two are a lot alike. Yukina tells Sayo to decide after she listens to her sing.

By the way, Yukina is kind of a big deal. Sayo discovers that for herself when she sees how packed the venue is for her performance. Lisa is in the crowd, too. Good friends Ako Udagawa and Rinko Shirokane are also in the audience. Once Yukina takes the stage and starts singing, Sayo knows immediately that she’s the real deal. She possesses the best singing voice she’s ever heard. After the concert, Sayo asks to join Yukina’s band. She truly believes they can reach the top if they’re together. Yukina agrees and even cracks a smile for the first time in this volume! It’s nice to see her smiling. She should do it more often. They both want to start practicing right away. Alright, let’s not go crazy now ladies. You still need more band members! A bassist, keyboardist, and drummer would be great. Speaking of drummers, that Ako girl in the crowd earlier is a drummer and she’s a huge Yukina fangirl. She would love to join the band! Ako brags about being the second-best drummer in the world after her sister. That rubs Yukina the wrong way. This isn’t a game and she doesn’t have time to mess around with someone bragging about second place. Harsh!

Ako won’t give up though! For the rest of the week, she constantly begs Yukina to let her join the band but with no luck. What does she have to do? Rinko suggests that she show her resolve through her music. Not a bad idea. Ako approaches Yukina the next day and asks for a tryout. If she doesn’t like what she hears, she’ll stop asking to join the band. That seems fair but Yukina is still hesitant. Lisa, who happens to be there, knows that Ako is a hard worker. She can vouch for that. They’re both in the dance club together. Lisa convinces Yukina to give Ako an audition. Sayo isn’t too pleased about this but goes along with it anyway. She does wish they had a bassist though. It would make it easier to judge how she matches their rhythm. Lisa used to play bass in the past. Maybe she could play for them? The four girls jam together and it feels AMAZING! They feel like they’re playing better than usual. What is this feeling!? After a long silence, Yukina announces that Ako passes. Yay! Even though it wasn’t planned, Lisa also joins the band. There was just something really special about them all playing together.

Yukina hopes everyone is serious about this. She doesn’t plan to fail. All they need now is a keyboardist. In a stroke of luck, they’re invited to perform in a few days. It’s their first gig! They’ve been practicing really hard and this should be a good test for them. But they still need that keyboardist! It turns out that Ako’s friend, Rinko, plays the piano. She’s never told her though. Ako has been sending Rinko videos of their practice and she’s been practicing playing the piano to their songs. When Ako tells her that they’re looking for a keyboardist, she asks to tryout. Rinko is given an audition and it turns out fantastic! The girls felt the same way they did when they first played together. It was magical! This feels right. Yukina welcomes Rinko to the band. Now they have five members! The band is complete. I hope they’re ready for their live performance!

Do you know what the band needs? A name. Yukina gets an idea after coming across a blue rose. She names the band Roselia. It’s a combination of “rose” and “camellia.” In the language of flowers, it means to achieve the impossible. It’s the perfect name. On the day of the live show, a few of the girls are nervous. That’s understandable. This is their first live performance! But they’re here now and they can do is go out there and do their best. And that’s exactly what they do. Roselia performs the song “Black Shout” and the crowd loves it. Needless to say, the performance went well. Afterward, the girls go to a restaurant to celebrate. Yukina uses this opportunity to let everyone know how she feels. Everyone did a great job but they can still do better. She wants to raise this band’s level to its highest possible limit. She plans to make it to Future World Fes. Yukina makes it perfectly clear that no one in the band will have time for anything other than music. If they can’t keep up, they will be kicked out. Are they willing to bet everything on Roselia?

As a bonus, please enjoy the song that Roselia performed in this volume, “Black Shout,” below!

In Summary:
It’s no secret that I’m a huge BanG Dream! fan. And if you know me, which I think you kind of do, then you know that I’m an even bigger Roselia fan. You’d better believe I’d jump at the chance to review this manga! This volume showed us how Roselia was formed. If you’ve played the mobile game or watched the anime, then you probably already know how it all went down. But it was definitely nice to see it in manga form. I think the manga did a good job telling the story. The art style was way more moe than I was expecting it to be. Hey, no complaints from me! I especially liked how all of the girls’ personalities were highlighted. They all have their own flaws and strengths. And they all have something to play for. Yukina is playing to have her music acknowledged. Lisa is playing to watch over her friend. Sayo is playing to get rid of her inferiority complex towards her sister. Ako is playing to find a purpose besides just being cool. Rinko is playing to overcome her shyness. All things considered, I loved this volume. Granted, that may just be my Roselia bias talking. I can’t deny that. What I do know is that if you’re a Bandori or Roselia fan, you should give this manga a read!

Content Grade: B+
Art Grade: B+
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: A

Age Rating: T
Released By: TOKYOPOP
Release Date: August 11th, 2020
MSRP: $12.99 (US)