The European Power Metal Thread

First Post July 08, 2020 09:19 PM

Helloween - "Keeper Of The Seven Keys Part I" (1987)

Helloween & I have had a long & rocky relationship over the years but they've never managed to get the better of me. Despite feeling confident that the metal runs freely through their veins, I can't ever get away from the fact that it's a watered down & syrupy metal that's intended more to give them a sugar-high than any sort of adrenaline rush. "Keeper Of The Seven Keys Part II" has always been my preferred Helloween release but even then I wouldn't say that I find it to be in any way an enjoyable experience. I just find that the highlights are a touch stronger than its predecessor despite having more deeper canyons. I like the intro & outro tracks on ""Keeper Of The Seven Keys Part I" as well as one of the six legitimate songs but while the rest of the material is well executed & easy on the ear you'll find it to not only tiptoe along the cheese line but to confidently leap over it time & time again. I guess I'm really not Helloween's target audience.

3/5

September 20, 2020 07:33 AM

Blind Guardian - "Nightfall In Middle-Earth" (1998)

I thought I'd revisit this one after quite enjoying Andi's submission for the September The Guardians Playlist & found that I still have a lot of time for it. As with most European power metal, there's still a bit more cheese on offer than I'd like (particularly the medieval folk influence which is more pronounced than I remember from Blind Guardian's other releases) but the anthems are huge with some absolutely epic choruses. The vocals & instrumental performances are incredible here & have always been the main drawcards for me with Blind Guardian along with the furious speed metal component. I definitely prefer 1995's "Imaginations From The Other Side" over this one but "Nightfall in Middle-Earth" still sits comfortably amongst the top few power metal records I've ever experienced. I guess that says a lot about my taste for power metal in general. For fans of Helloween, Gamma Ray & Iced Earth. 

3.5/5

March 19, 2021 09:59 PM