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Blind Guardian - A Night At The Opera CD (album) cover


Blind Guardian


Progressive Metal

3.92 | 211 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars I first bought Blind Guardian's album Nightfall in Middle Earth. I was impressed, sure, but I couldn't see exactly why it was listed as prog here in the archives. It sounded mostly like rather unique power metal to me. However, when I went out and purchased A Night at the Opera, those questions were answered, and fairly quickly. If you want to find this band's proggiest output, this is where to go. If nothing else convinces you, try the fourteen And Then There Was Silence, full of rhythm and key changes and massive harmonies and a chorus like I have never heard anywhere else.

I'm not a big power metal fan. I'm not really that into hyperfast songs with little bass and incredibly cheesy lyrics. But this album works, all the way through, keeping quite uptempo through a lot of it without getting repetitive. My brother, a drummer, is fascinated by this album--chances are if crazy or creative drumming works for you, this is a great place to go. From the blistering double bass on Precious Jerusalem to the excellent cymbal work at the end of Wait for an Answer, Thomen Stauch proves he is a master of those rhythm circles. And that's not to say that someone who is a big fan of guitar would be disappointed, either. The electric riffs and solos work magic in this context. The only thing missing is a strong bass presence, which I think might be the only problem I have with this album at all.

And then there's the vocals. They might not work for some, I understand. They are about the most pretentious collection of four part harmonies soaring over electric guitars. Personally, I think they're really interesting and add so much to the music, but to the fan of more straightforward rock or metal, I can see how they can drag the album down. Hansi has a unique voice, and maybe not the best one, but the man has a keen sense for singing with emotion and power. And for writing genius vocal melodies.

Definitely something to give a shot to. Fans of progressive or power metal should be able to enjoy this, as it sits somewhere between the two (less progressive than Symphony X, but much more so than, say, Dragonforce). Just try to avoid singing along with random vocal bits, like the chorus of Battlefield or melodies here and there throughout And Then There Was Silence. It's fantastic stuff, and I enjoy it even more now than I did on my first few listens--a sure sign of true progressive magic.

LiquidEternity | 5/5 |


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