Sunday, October 05, 2014

Blind Guardian "Nightfall"

Today's post is on a lighter note.  Blind Guardian are a German Power Metal band and rather a long running one too.  Forming in the mid 80's Blind Guardian were more speed metal then power, but come the album Nightfall In Middle Earth the band were mixing the styles quite nicely and here they enhanced their sound with a folk element.

As the album title suggests, this album is based around JRR Tolkien's epic series.  However, this is not a Lord of The Rings concept album, this is based around The Silmarillion.  The collection of tales that narrates the history of Middle-Earth.  Published posthumously by his son, The Silmarillion is a hard read as it is a collection of works mostly incomplete.  Although this a difficult and often times boring read, it makes for a killer concept album.

The album is my favourite by Blind Guardian and when I caught then on tour when they first came to Canada the majority of the material they played was from this album.  It was awesome!  The song I chose to feature, while not my favourite, is the title track "Nightfall".  The song has a very folky, yet theatrical sound all while remaining metal.

The guitar melodies are folky and run throughout the song and the keyboards add a majestic atmospheric all the while vocalist Hansi Kursch brings a theatrical performance which turns this song from progressive to epic.  The song creeps in (like nightfall ... as the lyrics suggest) and builds into a crescendo of a chorus.  My favourite part is the bridge around 2:30 minute mark leading into the solo.  The song lacks a traditional structure, yet does not feel jarring or odd.  It flows remarkably smoothly and gently creeps away again.

Have a listen.  This is the Middle-Earth I want to lose myself in.


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