Blind Guardian, Gloryhammer - Nottingham, England, 21st May 2016

Event: Blind Guardian: Beyond The Red Mirror UK Tour
Written by: Baz Anderson
Published: 25.05.2016


Blind Guardian, Gloryhammer - Nottingham, England, 21st May 2016 by Baz Anderson (35)

The German masters of power metal Blind Guardian have been touring the world on the back of their latest Beyond The Red Mirror album, which for the first time included a slightly extended visit to the UK and Ireland playing to audiences previously unreached in the bands thirty-odd year history.

With doors opening early on this Saturday evening and not having had the luxury of a warm-up act, it comes to some surprise that Gloryhammer draw a good audience right off the bat. It feels like we're heading straight into the meat of the sandwich with thunderous, cheese-laden power metal slices from the band's two albums.

The audience respond well to the band from... outer space. Gloryhammer are the clichéd but refreshingly self-aware and humorous band the power metal world needs more of. UK audiences really love getting their teeth into metal you can both wail along to and have a chuckle about at the same time. The balance Gloryhammer have is brilliant.

Rise of the Chaos Wizards
Legend of the Astral Hammer
Hail to Crail
Questlords of Inverness, Ride to the Galactic Fortress!
The Hollywood Hootsman
Magic Dragon
Angus McFife
Universe on Fire
The Unicorn Invasion of Dundee

In what seems like no time at all, the venue is full of life and Blind Guardian make their understated yet historic debut to the Nottingham stage. The audience erupts with excitement as the dream becomes reality for those who never thought they'd see the day Blind Guardian came to their doorstep.

What turns out to be one of only two visits to the latest album, "The Ninth Wave" opens this unindulgent and crowd-pleasing set. Following up with two classics from the Nightfall... album, things could not have started much better.

The band have been going over thirty years, yet still they seemingly find themselves a little surprised at just how much appreciation the Nottingham audience sent their way. It certainly illustrates how far-reaching and influential Blind Guardian have been, considering this is the band's first visit in this city.

A few newer songs followed by a duo from the ...Twilight World album and trio from Imaginations... close out the main portion of the show with great energy and a nice nod back to that era in the nineties. The loud audience ensure it isn't long before the band return for the first encore including the fantastic "Journey Through the Dark" and endless gift-that-keeps-on-giving sing-along "Valhalla".

With a back catalogue so rich and extensive, it seems unavoidable that some won't hear their favourite songs. With a setlist made up tracks from almost all Blind Guardian albums, completely omitting the Night At The Opera album could have been somewhat of an oversight, especially given the two-hour set length.

Still, back for one final encore with three fan-favourites from the three main eras of the band's history. The still relatively fresh "Sacred Worlds" followed by two songs no Blind Guardian set could be without. The Nottingham audience knew every word for "The Bard's Song..." and once again apparently staggered the band with their volume, and "Mirror Mirror" to close.

The night a huge success all round, from fantastic support band to the headliners amazement at their reception. It might be fair to say Blind Guardian will think twice about leaving it another thirty years to come back.

The Ninth Wave
Time Stands Still (At the Iron Hill)
Tanelorn (Into the Void)
The Last Candle
Lord of the Rings
Bright Eyes
The Script for My Requiem
Imaginations from the Other Side

Into the Storm
Journey Through the Dark

Sacred Worlds
The Bard's Song - In the Forest
Mirror Mirror

An interview with Marcus and Frederik conducted before the show can be found here.

Thanks to Claire at Nuclear Blast


Written on 25.05.2016 by Member of Staff since 2006.


Comments: 3   Visited by: 54 users
26.05.2016 - 16:10
I saw them both separately last year and I was blown away by Gloryhammer which I didn't listened any of their songs before then.
Blind Guardian was very good too, but Hansi didn't have the vocal abilities of 'Nightfall In Middle-Earth' anymore.
This doesn't affect the new songs, they work very good live but especially songs like 'Nightfall' doesn't work with his new vocal approach.
He sings it lower and softer now and with those songs it totally blurs with the guitar parts.
Still the new songs rocks live so maybe I will check them again when they are nearby.
30.05.2016 - 00:33
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
And legend returns to this twilight hall... starter of ''getting into'' , great articles and concert reviews, I miss you Barry, welcome back, I hope it wont be one in a like year but it will happen often

Set list is lame, way to many new songs, I wish there was more older ones
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
14.06.2016 - 10:01
Blind Guardian is coming out to the United States in late 2016. This review is definitely pumping me up as their approaching concert arrives!
See how it sings like a sad heart
And joyously screams out its pain
Sounds that build high like a mountain
Or notes that fall gently, like rain.

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