Power Metal

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Introduction

Power Metal is one of the sub-genres of heavy metal music that first appeared during the 1980's, drawing influence from traditional heavy metal, especially the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, and speed metal. The term power metal actually refers to two different but closely related metal styles, nowadays known as US/American Power Metal (USPM) and European Power Metal (or Melodic Power Metal), named after the geographic regions in which the styles originated. Artists from either place are not tied down to playing that particular kind of power metal of course, such as the US band Kamelot who play the European style, while there are also artists from other countries who play power metal such as Brazil's Angra and Japan's Galneryus. These days power metal bands come from many places and have many different styles, documented further on. This page primarily deals with the European brand of power metal, with USPM placed under its own child sub-genre.

European Power Metal

Though it developed a little later than USPM, in the late 1980's, specifically Germany, the European, melodic power metal sound is no doubt what most first think of when the term power metal is mentioned. Indeed it is more distinct in sound than USPM, but features the same basic influences, with the key difference to USPM being that European power metal draws more heavily on the speed metal influences rather than traditional heavy metal ones. Indeed in the late 1980's power metal was instead referred to as melodic speed metal.

European power metal is widely credited to have been started by Germany's Helloween in 1987 with the release of their Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I album. Prior to that, Helloween had been a speed metal band. Blind Guardian, another popular German power metal act, had similar roots while other bands such as Grave Digger started more in the traditional heavy metal vein. Others like Running Wild blended both before becoming power metal bands later in their careers. Compared to USPM European power metal acts often feature keyboards, catchy lyrics and are generally less hard hitting, though the German scene is quite notable for its additional heaviness. Popular power metal acts from other countries include Italy's Rhapsody of Fire, Finland's Stratovarius and Sweden's Sabaton.

Sub-genres of Power Metal

Aside from the standard USPM and European power metal styles, there are a number of different sub-genres, or hybrid genres in some cases, of power metal that have since developed.

Symphonic Power Metal: A style of power metal typically only applicable to the European sound, symphonic power metal increases the use of keyboards to create a symphonic backing, drawing on classical music. The use of symphonic elements in such bands can vary greatly with some artists using them as a main element of their sound, such as Rhapsody of Fire, while some merely use symphonic elements to flavour their music, such as Avantasia. Symphonic power metal releases are always placed under power metal on MMA.

Heavy Power Metal: Not to be confused with USPM, which is closer to traditional heavy metal to begin with, this refers to a hybrid of European power metal with traditional heavy metal. Bands are typically less speed orientated than pure melodic power metal acts. HammerFall is a heavy power metal act from Sweden while Nightmare are from France. Some artists which fall into this category featured a harder hitting, more aggressive sound, such as Grave Digger of Germany, but are still considered to belong to the European power metal genre rather than USPM. They are included under power metal on MMA, although some such artists have also made albums more directly rooted in traditional heavy metal and have those tagged accordingly. Some of the older heavy power metal acts, including Grave Digger and Nightmare, started as heavy metal acts before adding power metal into their sounds later in their careers.

Folk Power Metal: The folk metal as a genre can take its metal elements from almost any other metal genre going, including power metal. Elvenking and Falconer are folk power metal bands. They are typically included under folk metal on MMA, but with cases such as Falconer where folk influences are normally minimal per album, they are included under power metal instead. Additionally some power metal artists, especially Blind Guardian but also Grave Digger, have utilised folk influences in their music.

Power-Thrash: A hybrid of power metal and thrash metal, which can be considered sister genres due to both evolving from speed metal. The so called blue collar USPM can also be considered to be power-thrash but the term typically refers to European power metal mixed with thrash metal, although the early work of Iced Earth is considered to be power-thrash. The mix of elements can vary even within the same artist with some being primarily power metal and others primarily thrash metal. As well as Iced Earth, Dark Empire and Paradox have also released power-thrash albums, while some power metal bands have included thrash metal elements in their sound in smaller amounts, such as Seven Kingdoms and Persuader. Power-thrash artists are treated on a case by case basis on MMA, for example Tales of the Weird (2012) by Paradox is placed under thrash metal, but The Fateful dark (2014) by Savage Messiah is placed under power metal.

Progressive Power Metal: Drawing influences from progressive rock and metal music as well as power metal of either the European or US variety, these acts are typically included under power metal on MMA, such as Pyramaze and Kamelot. The exception is when an artist’s progressive influences become the most recognisable thing about their sound. Illusion Suite is an example of such a progressive power metal act. Vandroya and Wuthering Heights are progressive power metal bands, the latter of which also being classifiable under folk power metal.

Neo-classical Power Metal: Melodic power metal that uses neo-classical guitar playing for its lead guitar parts. Magic Kingdom and Concerto Moon are neo-classical power metal acts, while other power metal acts such as Amberian Dawn and At Vance have incorporated aspects of neo-classical metal into their sounds. As there is no neo-classical metal sub on MMA all such acts are placed under power metal by default, while non-power metal based neo-classical acts are typically placed under traditional heavy metal, or sometimes progressive metal, with which there can also be crossover, as with Symphony X.

Extreme Power Metal: This particular sub-genre combines power metal with melodic death metal and covers artists such as Children of Bodom, the first album of Wintersun and to a lesser extent the first album from Seven Kingdoms. Extreme power metal typically features power metal music but with primarily growling vocals rather than power metal’s traditional clean singing. Such artists are treated with a case by case basis as to their placement on MMA. The genre is sometimes also called Power-Death.

Power Metal Inclusive Genres

Melodic Metal is sometimes included under Power Metal but usually under Traditional Heavy Metal. Melodic metal features a presence of melody akin to European power metal but lacks the focus on speed. Many melodic metal releases tend to use some actual power metal elements as well as hard rock and sometimes other genres. An example of a melodic metal release that is placed under power metal instead of traditional heavy metal is Arven's Black is the Colour (2013).

- Written by adg211288 (April 2013)

Sub-genre collaborators (shared with US Power Metal & Neoclassical Metal):
  • DippoMagoo (leader)
  • adg211288
  • Sisslith

power metal top albums

Showing only albums and EPs | Based on members ratings & MMA custom algorithm | 24 hours caching

WIND ROSE Wardens of the West Wind Album Cover Wardens of the West Wind
WIND ROSE
4.86 | 6 ratings
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HELLOWEEN Helloween Album Cover Helloween
HELLOWEEN
4.57 | 19 ratings
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JUDAS PRIEST Painkiller Album Cover Painkiller
JUDAS PRIEST
4.46 | 147 ratings
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HELLOWEEN Keeper of the Seven Keys Part II Album Cover Keeper of the Seven Keys Part II
HELLOWEEN
4.44 | 133 ratings
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MINDMAZE Back from the Edge Album Cover Back from the Edge
MINDMAZE
4.62 | 12 ratings
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ORION'S REIGN Scores of War Album Cover Scores of War
ORION'S REIGN
4.79 | 6 ratings
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SEVEN KINGDOMS Brothers of the Night Album Cover Brothers of the Night
SEVEN KINGDOMS
4.72 | 7 ratings
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ARMORY Empyrean Realms Album Cover Empyrean Realms
ARMORY
4.64 | 9 ratings
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BLIND GUARDIAN The God Machine Album Cover The God Machine
BLIND GUARDIAN
4.73 | 6 ratings
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FALCONER Among Beggars and Thieves Album Cover Among Beggars and Thieves
FALCONER
4.54 | 13 ratings
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ETERNITY'S END The Fire Within Album Cover The Fire Within
ETERNITY'S END
4.68 | 7 ratings
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NIGHTMARE The Dominion Gate Album Cover The Dominion Gate
NIGHTMARE
4.67 | 6 ratings
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power metal Music Reviews

BLIND GUARDIAN The God Machine

Album · 2022 · Power Metal
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adg211288
As my indisputable favourite band, when Blind Guardian releases a new album it is, understandably, one of the biggest metal events of any year that it happens. In 2022, the event is the release of The God Machine, Blind Guardian's eleventh mainline album and twelfth overall, following the long talked about orchestral album that finally appeared as their previous release, Legacy of the Dark Lands in 2019, which was released under the name Blind Guardian Twilight Orchestra. Excluding that album, it has actually been as long as 2015 since Blind Guardian released a new power metal album. The God Machine represents the proper follow-up to Beyond the Red Mirror, ending their longest gap between studio albums – seven years.

Never the most prolific of bands in terms of turning out new albums, Blind Guardian has always represented quality over quantity. There is not such a thing as a sub-par album in their entire discography and The God Machine is of course not the one to break that trend. In fact, it does much the opposite. Despite some fierce competition from especially 2010's At the Edge of Time, what we have here is easily the strongest release Blind Guardian has put out since their golden years of the 1990s. That's in part due to how much this album actually sounds like their classic period once again. This is the kind of record that will likely make their former drummer Thomen Stauch, who left the band after 2002's A Night at the Opera due to be dissatisfied with the less aggressive direction the other three band members were heading in, wish he was back in the band. It's that much like the 1990-1995 era that produced their trio of aggressive power metal classics: Tales From the Twilight World, Somewhere Far Beyond and Imaginations From the Other Side.

This most aggressive side of Blind Guardian isn't like it hasn't been heard since the 1990s. The last two albums most of all had tracks that harkened back to those days, but they were overall very modern Blind Guardian releases of the kind started by 1998's Nightfall in Middle-Earth; more melodic, progressive, and symphonic. The God Machine instead feels like it may be somewhat reactionary to the fact that their last output was the orchestral album, following the non-metal album with an album that's the heaviest they've been since Imaginations From the Other Side. Signs of the more modern Blind Guardian are still here, such as in Secrets of the American Gods, which is a quite symphonic track, and there's also a ballad, Let it Be No More, but mainly this is a Blind Guardian that is all about speed and aggression, with some actual speed metal once again in evidence within the power metal.

The only thing really missing from making this sound like a true classic Blind Guardian album is one of their folksy ballads like A Past and Future Secret or The Bard's Song: In the Forest. Let it Be No More is quite nice but doesn't quite just work in same way. That said, this is still the closest thing you'll hear to a new 1990s style Blind Guardian album. And it turns out that this is just what the doctor ordered. It is, without a doubt, the best album they've done since then. Great songs, heavy as hell and Hansi Kürsch is on absolute fire, singing like he's in his twenties again instead of his fifties. Together Blind Guardian are giving the power metal genre one big kick up the backside.

Despite being my favourite band, or perhaps because of it, I always find it difficult rate Blind Guardian albums when I review them. I could easily put the majority of them on a pedestal and even the weakest among them is still far stronger than the average album, which is why I have to force myself to be more reserved than I might with other bands. Rate them as only Blind Guardian albums and not more generally as power metal albums. Doing it this way, I had long come to the conclusion that the 1990s was Blind Guardian's five star period and other albums, no matter how good, were the four and a half stars, 'best of the rest' ones.

The God Machine is the Blind Guardian album that proved me wrong.

THRONE OF CHAOS Loss Angeles

Album · 2003 · Power Metal
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UMUR
"Loss Angeles" is the third full-length studio album by Finnish death/thrash/power metal act Throne of Chaos. On this release they have however shortened their name to TOC. The album was released through Spinefarm Records in October 2003 in Finland (and internationally through InsideOut Music in 2004). This would be their last album in their original run as they disbanded in 2005. It´s the successor to "Pervertigo" from 2002 and features one lineup change as TOC have opted to add clean vocalist Tuomas Nieminen to the ranks, making the band a sextet on "Loss Angeles".

TOC (under the Throne of Chaos monicker) started out as a melodeath band on their debut full-length studio album "Menace And Prayer" (2000), but already moved on to something different on "Pervertigo" (2002), which combined their core melodeath sound with melodic thrash metal and power metal, incorporating clean vocals. "Loss Angeles" sees TOC playing a melodic power metal style with progressive metal elements, and only very few nods toward melodeath and thrash metal. Nieminen is a great addition to the ranks. He has a strong voice and a powerful commanding delivery (giving off a strong Sonata Arctica vibe in the vocal department). The harsh vocals (performed by guitarist Taneli Kiljunen) are few and far between and predominantly appear on the song "Break-A-Neck".

"Loss Angeles" features 10 tracks and a total playing time of 44:27 minutes. 9 originals and a cover of "Smoke On The Water" by Deep Purple. The latter delivered in a fast speed/power metal version, which is actually pretty well done. The album is a pretty dynamic release, featuring both loud and epic moments and more subdued and mellow sections, as well as a couple of harder edged faster and more aggressive sections. The music is drenched in signature Finnish melancholy and sense for soaring epic melodies. It´s an album which requires a few spins to sink in, and it´s not necessarily an album which will please fans of the band´s early releases, as TOC have by now moved far away from the melodeath of the "Menace And Prayer" (2000). It´s quite interesting how different their three albums sound.

"Loss Angeles" features a powerful, clear sounding, and detailed production job, which suits the material perfectly. Upon conclusion "Loss Angeles" is a high quality release by Throne of Chaos, and although they aren´t the most original sounding act out there (listen to how they almost rip-off Devin Townsend on "Blue Lady"), they still show signs here of something a bit more unique. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

RHAPSODY OF FIRE Legendary Tales

Album · 1997 · Power Metal
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UMUR
"Legendary Tales" is the debut full-length studio album by Italian power metal act Rhapsody (later Rhapsody of Fire as they had to change their name due to copyright issues). The album was released through Limb Music in October 1997. The band formed in 1993 under the Thundercross monicker but changed their name to Rhapsody in 1995. They released the "Eternal Glory" demo in 1995, which led to their label deal with Limb Music. "Warrior Of Ice" and "Land Of Immortals" are featured on both "Eternal Glory (1995)" and on "Legendary Tales". The two demo tracks "Invernal Fury" and "Alive and Proud" were also re-recorded and included on "Legendary Tales", but was given new titles ("Rage of the Winter" and "Lord of the Thunder", respectively). Other than those re-recordings from the demo "Legendary Tales" only features freshly written original material.

Stylistically Rhapsody play a symphonic European power metal style, which at its core is greatly influenced by the 1980s German power metal scene (and late 80s Helloween in particular), but expands on that sound with omnipresent symphonic and neo-classical influenced keyboards and choirs. It can get quite epic at times, but also very pompous and more than a little cheesy. "Legendary Tales" is the first album in a long line of releases from Rhapsody featuring the concept fantasy saga of the Emerald Sword. I won´t go into details about the lyrical concept, but just tell you that you get exactly what you expect from such a story (heroes, magic, and all...).

The sound production is handled by the legendary producer team of Sascha Paeth and Miro (Avantasia, Angra, Gamma Ray, Heavens Gate...etc.) and not surprisingly "Legendary Tales" is a very well produced release. Paeth also plays session bass on the album. The musicianship is generally strong and keyboard player Alex Staropoli and guitarist Luca Turilli compete for the listener´s attention throughout the album. One jaw-dropping guitar solo, intricate heavy/power metal riff follows the one before, and the keyboard playing follows suit. The drumming by Daniele Carbonera is varied and powerful, and lead vocalist Fabio Lione has a strong voice and a passionate delivery (it´s a little like listening to a power metal version of Dream Theater´s James LaBrie) and his Italian accent is tolerable (some may even find it charming).

"Legendary Tales" opens with the short classical intro piece "Ira Tenax", which builds tension and an epic atmosphere before giving way to the powerful bombast of "Warrior Of Ice", which is a song where Rhapsody show all their talents for composing and playing powerful symphonic power metal. It´s a varied and relatively complex track, while still being catchy, melodic, and well structured. The album continues with "Rage Of The Winter", which is arguably another highlight of the album, featuring an almost progressive leaning middle section which some very impressive guitar work. "Forest Of Unicorns" takes the listener on an epic acoustic folk fantasy journey, and while it certainly borders cheesy territory, it´s quite the beautiful and well composed track.

After that the album continues like this and shifts between energetic Euro power metal, symphonic parts, and folk sections, closing with the epic mid-paced and heavy title track (other highlights include "Flames Of Revenge", "Land Of Immortals", and "Lord Of The Thunder"). The quiet folky parts aren´t dominating the album and that´s a good choice, because while they work fine as variation, they are the least interesting part of the album. Rhapsody are strongest when they play their fastests and most heavy parts (and dip their toes in progressive songwriting), and least interesting when they take the tempo down and play more mellow parts.

"Legendary Tales" is an exceptional debut album by Rhapsody, featuring an incredibly well sounding production job, which is detailed, powerful, and not too polished (which happens too often in this genre), high level musicianship on all posts, and very intriguing and varied songwriting. In other words a high quality release on all parameters. If you can´t stomach bombast and epic symphonic power metal songwriting and concepts, this may not be your poison, but to those who can, this is a highly recommendable release and a 4.5 star (90%) rating is deserved.

THRONE OF CHAOS Pervertigo

Album · 2002 · Power Metal
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UMUR
"Pervertigo" is the second full-length studio album by Finnish death/thrash/power metal act Throne of Chaos. The album was released through Spinefarm Records in May 2002. It´s the successor to "Menace And Prayer" from 2000.

While "Menace And Prayer" certainly is a quality melodeath release in the vein of their fellow countrymen in Children of Bodom and Kalmah, it is not the most unique sounding release on the scene. "Pervertigo" shows Throne of Chaos moving away from the relatively generic (but still high quality) melodeath sound of the debut album and instead display a combination of melodeath, melodic thrash metal, and power metal. Especially the latter style has crept into the band´s music, and clean vocals have also been added and power metal sounding keyboards (the melodies sometimes remind me of a slightly less epic Sonata Arctica). The harsh vocals still appear, but aren´t as dominant as before.

"Pervertigo" is well produced, and the musicianship is on a high level too, but although Throne of Chaos obviously try to come up with something unique, they don´t quite succeed, and "Pervertigo" is therefore a decent quality release, but not an album reaching excellent territories in the songwriting department. On occassion maybe, but not when viewed as a full release. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

RAGE Resurrection Day

Album · 2021 · Power Metal
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Kev Rowland
In summer 2020 Rage frontman Peavy Wagner presented the group’s new line-up featuring two guitarists, announcing a return to the configuration that had recorded albums such as ‘Black In Mind’ and ‘End Of All Days’. He has brought in guitarists Stefan Weber (ex-Axxis) and Jean Bormann (Angel Inc, Rage & Ruins) to play alongside himself and drummer Vassilios “Lucky” Maniatopoulos, who has been with Rage since 2015. It does not seem to matter who is in the band though, as this is all about Peavy, as it has been since the formation of Avenger in 1983. That band released one album, ‘Prayers of Steel’, in 1985 before changing their name to Rage and Peavy still counts that as the debut Rage release, which makes this the 25th album (although he is also working in Refuge with ex-Rage members who have also released an album, he is one busy guy).

Rage have been through different styles over the years, but over the last 20 plus they have found their own version of highly melodic and commercial rock which is very heavy yet somehow is also radio friendly in a manner which is very much their own. They really mean this, and in Peavy they have a singer who may not be mentioned in the same breaths as the greats, but he has a wonderful style which is almost operatic, but with a real edge, and although he often sings mostly in lower registers he can also lift it up when he needs to. There are also some orchestral elements, something else which is strangely Rage, as they bring in Wagnerian elements and it is no surprise that Peavy created another side project, Lingua Mortis Orchestra, to further explore this side (and they released an album as well, does this guy never sleep?). This hits like a hammer, with the guitars providing some nice harmonies as well as crunching it down, Lucky keeps it blasting from the back, and then there is Peavy over the top of everything with his bass keeping it tight and his vocals always in control. He is like a master conductor bringing together musicians to fulfill his vision, and it does not matter who it is as Rage is Peavy and Peavy is Rage.

Yet another great album to add to the canon – they have long been one of my favourite German metal bands and this release re-emphasises why.



power metal movie reviews

HELLOWEEN United Alive

Movie · 2019 · Power Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Imagine a Judas Priest show with both Tim Ripper Owens and Rob Halford singing together. No wait… Imagine a Sepultura show with both Max Cavelera and Derick Green singing. No wait, that’s not even it. I’ve got it… Imagine an Iron Maiden show with Paul Dianno, Bruce Dickinson and Blaze Bailey all singing. Well, maybe, if Dickinson had left after four albums and Blaze had been there ever since. Ok, Now swap out the zombie mascot for some comedy pumpkins and you’re approaching the situation here. Helloween, one of Germany’s biggest and most important bands, one of the most iconic Power Metal bands in history, with one of the most impressive family trees (Gamma Ray, Masterplan, Freedom Call, Unisonic, Iron Savior etc) make one of the most anticipated decisions in the history of the genre.

Who is your favourite Helloween singer? Is it Kai Hansen, the heaviest singer and the original? Is it Michael Kiske, the most technically accomplished and the one from their most iconic record? Or is it Andi Deris, their best frontman and the singer on the most albums? – Turns out, now you don’t have to choose. United Alive, the live video from the Pumpkins United tour sees all three join the stage together, cracking out a career spanning mixture of material from the earliest thrashiest material to the modern gems, with all the iconic genre defining masterpieces from the peerless Keepers’ era sprinkled in too.

There are over 20 tracks here (some are intros and solos, and some are medleys/combinations, but still…) that’s a lot of Helloween. All three singers take it turns to sing. Sometimes not even a song each, but rather dividing it up section by section inside each song, or all at once. It is very welcome to hear them back on some of their own tracks like ‘Heavy Metal Is The Law’ after not hearing it on the other live videos, or ‘Dr. Stein’ after having heard only Deri’s take on it previously. Conversely it is very interesting to see Kai or Kiske sing on some of the big commercial ‘90s/’00s hits like ‘Perfect Gentleman’ or ‘If I Could Fly.’

There are often 7 members on stage at the one time (or 8 if you count the keyboardist, Eddy Wrapiprou). There’s Weikath and Grosskopft on guitar and bass as always. Sascha Gerstner and Daniel Löble on guitar and drums like the last several albums. And the three aforementioned singers (with Kai also playing guitar).

There’s a mix of footage, ranging from headline shows in Madrid, Spain to festival appearances at Wacken and in Brazil. Sort of like they did already on their previous ‘Legacy World Tour 2005/2006 DVD.

Normally I really prefer a concert DVD to come from one single show, rather than complied from a series of different dates in different places with different lighting, sound and camera work, but given that the band itself is now a compilation of past and present members and some of the songs included are medleys, I don’t know why but it just works here.

The band put on a great show. There’s a lot going on. There’s video screens, a big pumpkin stage set piece around the drum kit (which has 4 kickdrums for some reason, just to add to the over-the-top feel of it all), a light show, and a few cheesy moments like members coming out dressed in a top hat and cane, or raining pumpkin balloons.

Deris, ever the consummate front man is great at revving up the crowd, and then the different members get spotlights for certain tunes and join up on others, there’s prolonged solo segments, a tribute to late drummer Ingo Schichtenberg, its all very diverse and entertaining. They even do a stripped-down bare bones version of the ballad ‘Forever And One’ straight after a super heavy Walls Of Jericho/EP medley, which pretty much shows both polar opposites of the band’s varied discography.

There’s multiple different ways you can buy it. DVD, Blu Ray, combinations thereof. Versions with CDs. The version I got it two Blu Rays. One with the concert and one with a load of extra footage. There’s a few extra songs (Including the underrated ‘Kids Of The Century’ from the oft maligned Pink Bubbles Go Ape album). There’s a bunch of behind the scenes footage looking at various aspects of the tour and production. It comes in a nice shiny digi-book with some brief liner notes and a glossy photo booklet. You know, just as if it wasn’t value for money enough already with an almost three-hour concert of a Helloween fan’s wildest fantasy line-up.

As a concept you really have to hand it to them; its quite a clever move to reuinite with past members without losing current members as some fans never got over Kiske leaving the band or only ever even tried the Keepers albums. Some fans really love the Kai era and you never get to see Helloween play much material from it anymore (you only really get the chance if he chucks one in to a Gamma Ray show some time). Its a great idea to reel them back in and show them how great the Deris era can be too. Come for ‘Halloween’ and ‘Future World’ but stay for ‘Sole Survivor’ and ‘Power’ then learn to love the Deris era if you don’t already.

Thankfully though, its not just the concept that’s good. The whole package is good. The sound, footage, editing and bonus material. Most importantly though, the performance. It doesn’t come across as a novelty cash grab, it really feels like a jubilant celebration. As they say in the opening track ‘Halloween’ ”There’s magic in the air.” This may be cheesy to say (but hey, if you like Helloween, you better be used to cheesy) but it really is a heavy metal dream come true. Buy it!

BETO VÁZQUEZ INFINITY 15 Years Alive LTD Edition

Movie · 2016 · Power Metal
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m3g52
A year ago Beto Vazquez Infinity met its 15 years ... And gave us a feast with joy, good music and diversity. And now we have the fruit in a DVD accompanied with 2 CDs with all the live sound of this recital. The show presented in this DVD contains a section of his classics, then a middle section where all played more Prog Metal and left many open mouths and an end to all motor either energizing. The DVD and limited edition cd show impeccable quality. Everything is divided as follows: The first part of the show was the memories, issues conodcidos discography BVI, renewed and with new energy, with the voices of Caro Guedes, Vero Libre, Casti and Pereyra on a solid band. The band shows with ease, stressed this fact with good camera movements. The sound and picture quality gives a good sense of what was experienced in that reecital of celebration of 15 years. Then began the most difficult part in stage movement, instrumentation and personnel. Metal Prog most part, higher flight, which leaves more than one amazed. Flutes game, rhythm guitars, harp, saxophone and a chorus that vibrated in states of metal, prog and Ethnic ... The third part returns to the strength of metal with Devil Vision by Caro flawless interpretation of Guedes and choirs Nadia Mancini, a soprano who gives the exact support. A material that is worth having, especially if you want to discover Beto Vazquez Infinity, risky in a scene (the Argentina) where it is very difficult for independent bands to achieve, first that recital that is documented, much less achieve DVD + CD unsupported's the big distributors.

ANGRA Angels Cry: 20th Anniversary Tour

Movie · 2013 · Power Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Angels Cry 20th Anniversary Live is a 2013 concert Blu-ray by the Brazilian Progressive/Power Metal band Angra. It features the line-up with Italian singer Fabio Lione (ex-Labyrinth, Rhapsody of Fire) on vocals performing material from all eras of the discography passionately – with some interesting guest appearances including Tarja Turunen (ex- Nightwish), Uli Jon Roth (ex-Scorpions), Amilcar Christófaro (Torture Squad) and the Familia Lima string section.

This set has quite high production values. Visually; the thing is an absolute gem. Top notch image quality, great camera work with tasteful editing, and the actual stage show contains interesting video screens with eye catching imagery. Its all just great for the eyeballs, which is why you’re getting a video recording and not an audio recording anyway, right? Well this is totally worth every penny in the visual department.

Sonically, the recording is crystal clear. You can hear every single note, every different drum and cymbal. Its like a Rush concert or something – brilliant clarity and definition. The only thing that’s not absolutely perfect is that in the stereo mix, the rhythm guitar is not as heavy as some of the studio versions, but it is still a brilliant mix nonetheless. Best of all; The performance is beyond stellar; Fabio nails it recreating the band’s different singers’ work well and injects some of his own flair into the proceedings. The guitar solos are out of this world and the tireless drumming of Ricardo Confessori sounds great. Listening to and watching the interesting music is an absolute joy.

Highlights include the fantastic renditions of ‘Evil Warning,’ ‘Nothing To Say’ and the fantastic set closer ‘Nova Era.’ The enthusiastic São Paulo audience seem really into it.

Overall; Its an absolutely great concert DVD on a technical level, and better still it’s a great concert in and of itself. The line-up is strong, the setlist is great and the guest musicians add an extra layer of interest. I highly recommend this to fans of the band, fans of this end of the musical spectrum, and fans of good quality concert recordings. It would be an unquestionable treat for existing fans but would also work really well as a first purchase for newcomers

STRATOVARIUS Under Flaming Winter Skies - Live in Tampere

Movie · 2012 · Power Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
Under Flaming Winter Skies, Live In Tampere is the first official concert Blu-Ray by the legendary Finnish Power Metal band Stratovarius. It was filmed in Tampere, Finland on the Jörg Michael farewell tour and as such the crowd interaction is in Finnish (with English subtitles) and Jörg gives the crowd a farewell speech. In part, the setlist is built around him, such as the inclusion of `Speed Of Light’ because it was the first song he ever played with the band… although to be fair they’d have probably played that anyway. The main feature lasts around 1hr 52mins and contains 22 tracks, which works out as 17 songs when you discount the intro, guitar solo, bass solo, keyboard solo and speech. There’s a Deep Purple (`Burn’) and The Who (`Behind Blue Eyes’) cover in there, as well as all the fan favourites you’d expect like `Eagleheart’ `Kiss Of Judas’ `Hunting High And Low’ `Paradise’ `Father Time’ `Black Diamond’ etc

The picture is absolutely fantastic, clear and sharp. Its helped a lot by a great but subtle stage show with intelligent use of lighting, and not too much dry ice as well as a tasteful and sensible editing job that is fast and contains enough movement to keep your interest but is slow and still enough so that you can appreciate the actual musicianship (of each member, as none are overlooked.)

The sound is even better with an absolutely crystal clear mix in which you can hear every stoke of every drum, each key get pressed (without the keys being too loud and overpowering the Metal) and every note the bass plays. The vocals are impressive and the crowd noise doesn’t overpower them, even though they sing almost every word and best of all, it all actually seems to be live and not obviously mimed or overdubbed (or indeed out-of-sync). In general, its just one of the best concert audio mixes that I’ve heard so far and very solid visually as well.

The biggest thing in this concert’s favour however is the sheer enthusiasm of the performance; the band are so into it and absolutely deliver on all levels. They are very interactive with the crowd, they interact with each other, Jörg twists and throws his sticks around, the guitars and mic stands are enthusiastically moved around and generally the band just look like they love being there.

In terms of extras; the booklet has a lot of high-quality photos and a little written interview with Jörg. The disc has a bonus 5.1 mix of the track `Elysium’ and there is a 29 minute documentary called `Rewinding From The Past To 2012.’ In terms of Blu-Ray Statistics; the screen format is 1080i/29,97/16:9(1,78:1) and the audio format is DTS HD MA 2.0/5.1 (although the documentary is only available in stereo), the disc format is BD-50 and the region code is: A/B/C.

Overall; this is an excellent, well made and masterfully performed concert Blu-Ray and I’d highly recommend it to anyone who’s into this sort of thing.

HELLOWEEN Helloween - High Live

Movie · 1997 · Power Metal
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Kingcrimsonprog
High Live is a concert DVD by the legendary German Power Metal band Helloween, recorded in Milan, Italy (and Gerona, Spain) in 1996 on the Time Of The Oath tour.

The main feature is a scorching 84-minute concert, in which an energetic and totally on-form band blast through a lot of material from Master Of The Rings and Time Of The Oath to an enthusiastic crowd. Just going off the performance, this is an absolute 5-star live album.

Songs like “Sole Survivor,” “Before The War” and “Power” sound absolutely blistering here, and I’d highly recommend checking it out on that basis. Andi’s vocals on his own material are absolutely excellent on this release, and Uli’s powerful, understated drumming absolutely kills.

There are a few downsides to the overall product however, such as the picture being a little soft and not the sharpest. The sound is pretty great in one way, and you really get that “live feel,” but you have to turn it up fairly loud for it to become clear, as things can sound a bit muddy on low volumes. Nothing show-destroying though.

The other potential downside is that at the end of some songs, it stops, when they cut to the other concert (eg. from Italy to Spain) and the transition isn’t perfectly smooth, which may interrupt the flow a little. Luckily this never happens in the middle of songs or anything outrageous like that, and for the most part isn’t actually too disruptive.

Apart from that, this is a pretty great main feature all round, and shows the band proving why they are still one of the biggest names in Power Metal. In terms of bonus features: There is a text “History” feature, a discography feature and a photo gallery. All your standard ‘90s DVD extras that don’t add too much really, but look good written on the back of the box.

There is also a five minute “review” feature by Malcome Dome, which is a brief Metal Evolution style history lesson with a mixture of archive footage of the band and talking-head footage of Dome. The dialogue is a bit stiff and the audio is a bit muffled, but as a free extra its still worth a watch.

The track-listing for the main concert is:

1. We Burn 2. Wake Up The Mountain 3. Sole Survivor 4. The Change 5. Why 6. Eagle Fly Free 7. Time Of The Oath 8. Future World 9. Dr. Stein 10. Before The War 11. Mr Ego 12. Power 13. Where The Rain Grows 14. In The Middle Of A Heartbeat 15. Perfect Gentleman 16. Steel Tormentor

Overall; If you like the band, especially if you like the Deris era, then it’s a pretty worthwhile purchase. It shows the band at their Europe-conquering best, dripping with enthusiasm and playing like they mean it. The sound and editing are a tiny bit imperfect, but the band themselves more than make up for it. Comment

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