Blind Guardian-At the Edge of Time Review
Starting from the top!
Sacred Worlds-Starts with a nice mix of super heavy riffing with a nice orchestral complement. Verse start very slow and build to some extent but it is until the first solo that the heavy riffing returns. This strikes me as much more reminiscent of something from A Night at the Opera with its orchestral elements and slow/fast tempo changes. A nice start to the album. Isn't this from an MMO? It does have that sort of epic rpg vibe. Really killer solos in this one, something that is true for most of the album actually. Andre is really in top form here. 8/10
Tanelorn (Into the Void)-One of my favorites off the album. Super heavy and fast. Reminiscent of Imaginations and even to some extent their earlier more speed metal influenced material. Hansi kills it here vocally and again fantastic solos. One of the cooler riffs on the album plays underneath the verses here. 10/10
Road of No Release-Starts with a tinkly piano intro into a very epic and operatic piece before the verse. The chord progression here is dark and reminscent of Noldor from Nightfall in Middle Earth, unfortunately the chorus is kind of generic and is reminscent of A Night at the Opera. I kinda wish they had stayed with the darker evil vibe during the verses. At times the counterpoint choir stuff reminds me of later Savatage. Again another nice solo by Andre. 7/10
Ride Into Obsession-Starts fast and epic with layered leads sprinkled throughout. Reminds me of Battlefield from A Night at the Opera or Punishment Divine even. Dueling solos here from Marcus and Andre and its badass. 8/10
Curse My Name-Bard's Songish. Very folk inspired. Love Hansi's vocals on this one. Its not quite as catchy as Bard's Song or A Past and Future Secret. It grows into a more Nightfallish vibe as the song continues on. The half point of the song with its building counterpoint choir work is genius. I really liked this one. 10/10
Valkyries-Starts slow with some great singing by Hansi (on the whole he sounds terrific on this album). Simplistic riffing during the chorus puts me in the mind of A Twist in the Myth, rather bland epic chorus thats not really that catchy. Very cool lead melody after the first chorus. And the song does get better as it wears on but it never really catches. More nice dual leads throught this and a snippet of a dual solo like in the old days. 6/10
Control the Divine-Cool melody lines kick this one off. Heavy but not overly fast this one reminds me at times of the heavier tracks on Nightfall (think Into the Storm or Time Stands Still) but the chorus I'm not a big fan of. One of the weaker solos on the album, but as always the lead work is outstanding. Great riff finishes this one out. 7/10
War of the Thrones-Piano ballad. Beautiful playing here. Great orchestration. A wonderful vocal performance by Hansi. Epic and fantastic. Reminds me of the Forgotten Tales version of Lord of the Rings (which is fantastic). 9/10
A Voice in the Dark-We've all heard this one by now. Its the new single and rightfully so. Its absolutely killer. Great riffing and I dare say one of the best speed metal BG songs have ever done, bar none. Great memorable chorus. Killer solo. 10/10
Wheel of Time-Absolutely killer vibe to this opening. Orchestrated extremely well with a very middle eastern vibe, this seems to be the epic of the album and it does remind of And Then There Was Silence. Hansi's voice gets lost a little in the huge wall of sound here and there. Fantastic melodies throughout this from both the orchestra and the band. Massive chorus. Going into the first solo there is some fantastic riffing and all underneath that solo (which is brilliant). Progressive and almost Dream Theateresque elements popping up during this instrumental section. At about the 5 minute mark is goes into a instrumental middle eastern section that sounds very very similar to Iced Earth's song "Harbringer of Fate" which is a good thing in my opinion. The end of this song is killer. Another really standout track.
This is probably the best BG have sounded since Nightfall. Truly a melding of the sound of later albums and earlier speed metal riffing. Infinitely better than the disappointing "At Twist in the Myth". Highly recommended.
Don't go to Heaven, Cause its really only HELL!- "Don't Talk to Strangers" by Ronnie James Dio
We miss you Ronnie...