Originally written by Gregory Bradley.
The simply titled album Live is just that: a live album from one of the legends of power metal, Blind Guardian. It’s interesting to hear what they sound like live, since I haven’t had the pleasure of seeing this spectacle in person. Hearing this album only makes me kick myself even more for not having the funds to be able to fly to Germany and see them. Since this is a double disc set, you get 22 excellent tracks to enjoy thoroughly. There are only about 4 songs from the new album, and luckily they’re some of the best. While two or so hours is hardly enough time to truly appreciate all of the glory that is Blind Guardian, they do manage to squeeze nearly every one of the songs I wanted to hear from a live album. From “Into the Storm” to “Nightfall” to “The Soulforged” to “Bright Eyes” to “Mirror Mirror”, all of the good ones are here. This album is not without fault though. There was one problem I had, and although it’s a minor one, it’s still annoying. The problem lies in the transition between tracks. They include just a little bit of the between-song banter of singer Hansi Kursch. In this reviewer’s opinion, you should include none or all, not just parts. And it’s not that they just included parts of the banter, they just kind of overlap what he’s saying with the beginning and the end, meaning Hansi will start talking, getting you interested in what he’s about to say, then it cuts him off with the intro of the next song. It’s hard to describe, but I assure you it makes for a very awkward and non-seamless transition. With just a little thought, it could’ve been done in a stealthy way, which is a shame. They should’ve just not included some of the banter if it isn’t gonna be in full, as it has no point when it gets cut off. The aforementioned problem is a problem with the post-production of the album, so when the band is in mid-song, they never sounded better. Hansi’s vocals are as top notch as we’ve come to expect, and the guitar work is as perfect as you can get in the live setting. Production is slightly cymbal heavy at times, but to my amazement you can actually hear the bass guitar! All in all, (as if you needed me to tell you) if you like live albums and you like Blind Guardian, you’ll like this.