Blind Guardian -

Blind Guardian Biography

Melodic Power - Germany

Blind Guardian discography

Blind Guardian biography

The four bards have their origins in the small town of Krefeld in Germany.
There the band was originally formed in 1985, under the name Lucifer´s Heritage. They have had the same lineup since (talk about friendship!).

Lucifer's Heritage consisted of four skilled bards:

Hansi Kursch, who played the bass;
Andre Olbrich, who played the guitar;
Markus Siepen, who also played guitar;
Thomas Stauch, who played the drums.

This band was obviously influenced by RPG Epic metal and Helloween.

In the early days they recorded two demos: "Symphonies Of Doom" (1985) (wich wasn´t such a big hit), and "Battalions of Fear" (1986) (which was quite successfull).

They were quite successful in German underground and lateron they changed their name to Blind Guardian.

Some months later, they signed a contract with 'No Remorse', and in 1988 they released their debut album "Battallions of Fear" which resembled early Helloween, with the production of Kalle Trapp.

The next year (1989) they released their second album, " Follow The Blind ", featuring appearances by formal Helloween-guitarist and present Gamma Ray-vocalist Kai Hansen. He did some guitar-work and some singing on "Valhalla" and "Hall of the King".

Up to this point, there music was still very like Helloween.

With the third album (1990), "Tales from the Twilight World", they made some drastic changes in their music. It made their music known to all other continents. They had gone from raw speed-metal to a sound more melodic. An album that combines epic and melodic metal with such success, creating an unique style of music. The 'speed', however, was still there (just listen to songs like "Goodbye My Friend" or "Welcome To Dying").

This time they had, according to Hansi Kürsch, also spent more time on the lyrics.

This album opened a new chapter in the Guardian story.

For the first time they also had the cover painting done by Andreas Marshall, a veteran in designing covers for popular German metal groups.

After the third album their records were distributed in Japan, which had become a major fan base for Blind Guardian.

In September 1991 the band signed with Virgin (which was - according to many - responsible for the broad success of their next album).

In 1992 they released " Somewhere Far Beyond ".

The sound on their fourth album was pretty much the same as the sound on their previous one: it successfully blends epic ballads with metal resolving to a magnificent outcome.

It also has speed songs like the cover "Trial By Fire" and their own song "Journey Through The Dark".

On this album we should remark " The Bard's Song " (originally a single but never got the chance), with two awesome parts: "In The Forest" and "The Hobbit". Every self-respecting Blind Guardian fan should know these by heart.

With the success of this album they got a world-wide recognition.

In 1993 " Tokyo Tales " was out. With this album they followed lots of other bands who chose Tokyo as the location of a live album.

In 1994 they broke up with their formal producer and chose Flemming Rasmussen, the guy behind some of the best Metallica albums.

In 1995 Blind Guardian released two singles, " A Past And Future Secret " and "Bright Eyes" (also known as " Mr. Sandman " in Europe).

It wasn't until the release of their fifth album in 1995, " Imaginations From The Other Side ", that their sound altered. It was taken to a higher level of complexity, mixing the old speed-sound with a new, more orchestral sound that would show to be a great success.

In 1996 they released the album " The Forgotten Tales ", which featured several covers of known songs (like 'To France', 'Surfing USA', 'Spread Your Wings'), as some re-recorded Blind Guardian songs, and a fantastic live-recording of ' The Bard's Song - In The Forest'.

When the bard's released their sixth full-length album (in 1998), they showed that there is hardly no limit for their musical progress. Taking their music to yet a higher lever of complexity with "Nightfall in Middle Earth" must be one of the greatest events of german metal history. With NIM-E, they told the tale of The Silmarillion, as written by J.J.R. Tolkien.

In 2000 there was the album release "Demons & Wizards", which is not a pure Blind Guardian album.

John Schafer (guitarist of Iced Earth) and Hansi Kursch (vocalist of Blind Guardian) have created an almost perfect heavy metal album. The music is a mix of the two bands with most songs being more close to the Iced Earth style, while the vocal lines are clearly Blind Guardian. The majority of the songs are heavy, with the rhythm guitar of John playing a leading part with some amazing riffs, but you will also find a couple of more melodic songs. This album is the proof that when two geniuses combine their talents they can do miracles. The cover-art is a piece of art, the songs are catchy, heavy and melodic enough, the production is crystal clear (but also heavy) and the album is probably the best metal album of the year.

In late 2001 they released their hit-single ' And Then There Was Silence ', which contains the songs And then there was Silence (lasting for a whopping 14 minutes), which is - in short - brilliant, and Harvest of Sorrow (3 minutes).