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CD REVIEW: Blind Guardian – Beyond The Red Mirror

| 5 February 2015 | Reply
Blind Guardian - Beyond The Red Mirror - Artwork
After a long five year wait, Blind Guardian finally releases its 10th album.  For anyone who has paid attention to the direction of Blind Guardian, they have been moving more and more away from their power metal roots and towards a more epic symphonic progressive metal direction.  This has certainly somewhat divided their fan base, but I find myself enjoying the ride of where this band is taking us.
What we get with “Behind the Red Mirror” is a HUGE sound.  Everything about this record is huge and complex.  Blind Guardian used three different choirs from three different countries and two grand orchestras in recording this album.  This album is meant to be listened to at loud volume and with your full attention.  If you are using ear buds on your iPod to listen to this album, you are doing it wrong.  This is not background music.  The complexity of this album also requires a few listens to let it all sink in.  In fact, it wasn’t until my third or fourth listen that I really tried to pay close attention to the lyrics.  The songs are full of hooks, but maybe a bit more subtle than a simpler album might be.
The stand out feature of this album is the multi-layered vocals that give the album very much a Queen sound, although Hansi Hursch’s distinctive vocals could never be mistaken for Freddie Mercury’s.  Also, through the big wall of sound the drums just cut through and I find myself focusing in on them.  That’s not to say that the guitars are taking a backseat.  Even with all the choirs and orchestra, this is definitely a metal album.  Only in track 9, “Miracle Machine” does this album break with a mostly piano and vocal piece.  Otherwise, it is in your face sound.
I haven’t even mentioned the lyrics yet.  Blind Guardian aren’t called the Bards for nothing.  The story is a continuation from “Imaginations from the Other Side” where the red mirror is a passage between two worlds and must be found.  Very much an interesting fantasy story.
Certainly, this album isn’t for everybody, and certainly those hoping for a return of the old Blind Guardian will not going to like it, but if you are open to complex in your face wall of music with an intriguing story, you’re going to love this album as  I do.





Category: CD Reviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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