For 30 years Blind Guardian have galloped their way into the world of power metal. The latest album is a live record that embodies their career and perhaps a farewell to the band’s sound that we have come to know. Most live albums are contractual obligations by a record company or a collector’s item for its audience. However, in some cases, a live record can be the sign of a band re-inventing themselves.
So much rich history has made it onto this CD set. The collection of songs starts with the ten-minute opus, “The Ninth Wave” from Beyond The Red Mirror. We get an organic feel of this live recording especially with the songs from that album. These live recordings are quite impressive, hearing them done with a stripped-down production.
Having the production this way showcases the guitar work of Marcus Siepen and Andre’ Olbrich. We get to hear a nice raw mix in songs like “Twilight of the Gods”, “And Then There Was Silence”, and “Prophecies”. Even the synthesizers take a back seat in the mix, which allows the work of this dynamic duo to be considered in a new light.
Live Beyond the Spheres has deep cuts such as “Tanelorn (Into The Void)” and “Sacred Worlds”, which made this compilation of music not only vast, but reminding its audience the versatility of its sounds. Hansi’s voice is ever so clean and is everything you would want and more in a vocalist, and his sense of humor is also documented as he commanded, “Scream for me Warsaw!” as the band start to play the song “Fly”. While the album does have its raw quality, somehow the drums are highlighted in the same way as the synthesizers. We do get that bombastic sound by Frederik Ehmke, especially when they play “Valhalla”. His drumming is even more exciting as they close out their performance with “Mirror, Mirror”, and his work is truly inspiring for any future drummer. The 22 songs on this record will only make the listener want to buy a ticket when they are in their respective towns, but it is also a great way to indoctrinate a person to these mighty bards.