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Quite an impressive showcase of power metal. - 91%

Blackheartx, August 2nd, 2007

First of, let me state that this was my second Blind Guardian album, my first being "A Night at the Opera." That being said, apart from a few tracks my friends showed me, I heard mostly their "polished" work.

That being said, this was rather a rather surprising album when I heard it. Instead of the multi-layered and overdubbed work found on the newer record, this was old-school power at it's best. The epic sound was beginning to show here, and it soon develop into the BG we all know and love today.

"Traveler in Time" opens up the album, and it proves to be one of the strongest tracks on the album. Although a bit slow in the beginning, it soon transforms into a very enjoyable track. "Welcome to Dying" is a good song, as well, but I do feel it is rather overrated. "Weird Dreams" is short, but not really filler. "Lord of the Rings" is the ballad of the album, and a good one at that. I never really cared too much for "Goodbye My Friend," but others may like it.

Now, next to "The Bard's Song," "Lost In The Twilight Hall" is favorite Blind Guardian song. Although Kai Hansen's vocals are not as prominent as I would have liked them, he really helps the epic feel of the song. The song also boasts some beautiful guitar harmonies and fantastic drum work, especially in the intro. It very well could have opened up the album.

"Tommyknockers" and "Altair 4" are both enjoyable songs (both of them based of off Steven King's 'Tommyknockers'), but not ones that I'm keen on listening to often. "The Last Candle" is a fitting way to end the album, and Kai's solos are enjoyable, to say the least.

Overall, this is not the quintessential power metal album, but it is one the most enjoyable & epic. A recommendation for any fan of the genre.