Blind Guardian is a German heavy metal band that has been active since 1984. Over the years, they have become one of the most iconic bands in the power metal genre, known for their epic, melodic sound and their fantastical lyrics that draw from fantasy and mythology.
In this article, we’ll explore the story behind Blind Guardian, their members, their music, and their journey to becoming one of the most beloved bands in the metal scene.
The Story Behind Blind Guardian
Blind Guardian was formed in 1984 in Krefeld, Germany, by vocalist Hansi Kürsch and guitarist André Olbrich. The band was initially called Lucifer’s Heritage, but they changed their name to Blind Guardian in 1986, after releasing their debut album Battalions of Fear.
The band’s early music was heavily influenced by speed metal, but they soon began to incorporate elements of folk, progressive rock, and classical music into their sound. Their second album, Follow the Blind, showcased this new direction, and it received critical acclaim.
They’re breakthrough album, however, came in 1992 with the release of Somewhere Far Beyond. The album featured the hit single “The Bard’s Song (In the Forest),” which became an instant fan favorite and solidified the band’s reputation as one of the most innovative and exciting bands in the metal scene.
Since then, the band has released a string of successful albums, including Imaginations from the Other Side, Nightfall in Middle-Earth, A Night at the Opera, and Beyond the Red Mirror. Their music has continued to evolve, incorporating elements of orchestral music and even opera into their sound.
Members of Blind Guardian
They have undergone several lineup changes over the years, but the core of the band has remained the same: Hansi Kürsch and André Olbrich.
Hansi Kürsch is the band’s lead vocalist and lyricist. He is known for his powerful, soaring voice and his ability to tell fantastical stories through his lyrics. André Olbrich is the band’s lead guitarist and is known for his intricate, melodic solos.
Other members of the band have included drummer Thomen Stauch, who was with the band from its inception until 2005, and guitarist Marcus Siepen, who joined the band in 1987.
Blind Guardian on Festivals
Blind Guardian is also known for their electrifying live performances, which have earned them a dedicated following of fans around the world. They have played at some of the biggest metal festivals in the world, including Wacken Open Air, Rock am Ring, and Hellfest.
One of their most memorable performances was at the Wacken Open Air festival in 2011, where they played their classic album Nightfall in Middle-Earth in its entirety. The performance featured a full orchestra and choir, making it a truly epic and unforgettable experience for fans.
Blind Guardian Merchandise
Blind Guardian has a dedicated fan base, and they offer a wide range of merchandise for their fans to show their support. Fans can purchase Blind Guardian t-shirts, hoodies, hats, posters, and other accessories on the band’s official website.
Demons and Wizards
In addition to their work with Blind Guardian, Hansi Kürsch and guitarist Jon Schaffer of Iced Earth have collaborated on a side project called Demons and Wizards. The project has released three albums, with the most recent, III, coming out in 2020.
Demons and Wizards features a similar epic, melodic sound to Blind Guardian, but with a darker, more aggressive edge. The project has been well-received by fans and critics alike and has
further cemented Hansi Kürsch’s status as one of the most talented and versatile vocalists in the metal scene.
Blind Guardian Best of
The band has released several “best of” collections over the years, showcasing some of their most popular and beloved songs. These collections include The Forgotten Tales, Memories of a Time to Come, and The Best of Blind Guardian.
One of Blind Guardian’s most beloved albums is Nightfall in Middle-Earth, released in 1998. The album is a concept album based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, and it tells the story of the fall of the Elven city of Gondolin.
The album features some of Blind Guardian’s most epic and memorable songs, including “Into the Storm,” “Mirror Mirror,” and “Nightfall.” It also showcases the band’s ability to weave complex stories into their music, with lyrics that are both poetic and engaging.
“Valhalla” is one of Blind Guardian’s most popular songs, and it has become something of an anthem for the band. The song first appeared on the album Follow the Blind and has since been featured on several “best of” collections.
The song tells the story of warriors who have died in battle and have ascended to Valhalla, the Norse mythological hall of the slain. It features Hansi Kürsch’s powerful vocals and André Olbrich’s intricate guitar work, making it a standout track in Blind Guardian’s discography.
Blind Guardian 2021 (After the Pandemic)
Still going strong in 2021, with no signs of slowing down. They recently released a live album called Imaginations from the Other Side – Live, which features a performance of the classic album in its entirety.
The band has also been teasing a new album, which will be their eleventh studio album. Fans are eagerly awaiting its release, which is expected sometime in 2022.
Blind Guardian’s live performances are legendary, and they have released several live albums over the years to capture the energy and excitement of their shows. Some of their most popular live albums include Live, Tokyo Tales, and Imaginations through the Looking Glass.
One of their most memorable live performances was captured on the DVD/Blu-ray Wacken Open Air 2016 – 27 Years Faster: Harder: Louder. The performance features a career-spanning setlist and showcases the band’s incredible energy and musicianship.
Blind Guardian Metal Archives
Blind Guardian has a dedicated following on Metal Archives, a popular online database of metal music. The band has received high ratings and positive reviews from fans and critics alike, cementing their status as one of the most beloved bands in the genre.
Blind Guardian Prophecies
“Prophecies” is another popular Blind Guardian song, featured on their album A Night at the Opera. The song tells the story of a prophet who can see into the future but is powerless to change it.
The song features some of Hansi Kürsch’s most emotive vocals, and it showcases the band’s ability to craft complex and engaging narratives in their music.
They also have a strong presence on Spotify, one of the most popular music streaming services in the world. Fans can stream all of the band’s albums and singles on the platform, as well as playlists and “best of” collections.
Blind Guardian Orchestra
Blind Guardian’s music has always had a cinematic quality to it, and they have embraced this by incorporating orchestral elements into their music. They have collaborated with orchestras on several occasions, including their performance of Nightfall in Middle-Earth at Wacken Open Air.
Blind Guardian’s fans are often referred to as “Guardian Blind,” a testament to the band’s loyal and dedicated following. The band has always had a close relationship with their fans, often taking time to meet with them before and after shows and interacting with them on social media.
EMP Blind Guardian
Blind Guardian has a wide variety of merchandise available for fans, including t-shirts, hoodies, hats, posters, and more. Fans can purchase merchandise from the band’s official website, as well as from various online retailers and at live shows.
EMP is one of the largest online retailers of metal merchandise, and they have a wide variety of Blind Guardian merchandise available. Fans can purchase t-shirts, hoodies, posters, and more from EMP’s website.
Blind Guardian & Demons and Wizards
Blind Guardian’s members have also collaborated with Jon Schaffer of Iced Earth to form the side project Demons and Wizards. The project has released three albums to date, with the most recent being III, which was released in 2020.
The project features a blend of Blind Guardian’s epic and melodic sound with Schaffer’s heavy and aggressive style, creating a unique and exciting sound that has won over fans of both bands.
They actually have a flag available for fans to purchase, featuring the band’s iconic logo and artwork from some of their albums. The flag is a popular item among fans and is often seen at concerts and festivals.
Blind Guardian Official Site
Blind Guardian’s official website is the best place for fans to keep up with the latest news and updates from the band. The site features tour dates, merchandise, and information about the band’s history and discography.
And they have released several concerts and performances on Blu-ray, including their Wacken Open Air performance and their concert with a symphony orchestra. These releases showcase the band’s incredible live performances and are must-haves for any fan.
Blind Guardian Box
Blind Guardian has released several box sets over the years, featuring collections of their albums, live performances, and other special content. These box sets are highly sought-after by fans and are often limited edition.
Nuclear Blast is a record label that Blind Guardian has worked with for many years, releasing several albums and live performances through the label. The band has a close relationship with the label, and their collaboration has resulted in some of their most beloved and successful releases.
Blind Guardian is one of the most beloved and respected bands in the metal scene, with a loyal fanbase and a rich history of epic and engaging music. From their early days as a speed metal band to their more recent collaborations with symphony orchestras and side projects like Demons and Wizards, Blind Guardian has consistently pushed the boundaries of what is possible in metal music.
Their unique blend of complex storytelling, intricate musicianship, and soaring vocals has won over fans around the world, and their live performances are legendary. Whether you are a die-hard fan or new to the band, Blind Guardian’s music is sure to leave a lasting impression.
Link to Blind Guardian’s live video at Wacken: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i-IcX_bccFc
Link to my experience when I saw Arch Enemy Live in Gothenburg: https://haborymx.com/arch-enemy-live-in-gothenburg/
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