Helloween
Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I


5.0
classic

Review

by facupm USER (15 Reviews)
November 29th, 2012 | 9 replies | 782 views


Release Date: 1987 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Power Metal's best

2 of 2 thought this review was well written

Helloween is arguably the most important Power Metal band of all-time. Pioneers in the European Power Metal scene, they earned their reputation mainly thanks to the couple of album called “Keeper of the Seven Keys”. The first of those Keepers remains until today the best and most important Power Metal album of all-time.

After releasing their debut “Walls of Jericho” (which was more of a speed metal record), Kai Hansen decided to leave the vocals, and hired none other than a young boy (just being 18 at that time) called Michael Kiske. Hell he was right. His vocals are really outstanding, high-pitched but keeping his tone so enjoyable. One of the most talented singers I’ve heard really. This addition really meant a big change to Helloween, since Kai’s vocals were rawer and lower in tone (not necessarily bad, but inferior to Kiske’s), and he devoted to song-writing and playing his guitar.

Their previous album showed energy and potential, but was far from perfect. Song-writing was really good, but would be improved here, Kai’s vocals might be annoying at times, and production was unclean. All the merits of Walls of Jericho were maximized to a certain level here that the band would never achieve again.

The keys for the success of this album, aside from the amazing vocals, are of course the guitar work and awesome songwriting. Kai Hansen and Michael Weikath display such a powerful set of riffs and solos that make you think “hell these guys rule”. Riffs are so heavy and powerful that you get immediately hooked with them. But they are not just catchy, they overflow energy. Take I’m Alive for example, the main riff is pure magic, yet it’s not so elaborated or complex, but it draws your attention. Here guitars sound very melodic, something which has improved from the previous album, and very creative. Bass guitar also rules hard; Markus Grosspkof is a talented bassist, who plays equally good on the predominant fast passages and on the slower ones. It can be clearly heard, and that is an advantage for the album.

Every song on the album has something to it. Initiation and Follow the Sign are instrumental short tracks which play a minor part on the album, but build the atmosphere. I’m Alive, the really opener, is nothing short of amazing, with that previously mentioned riff which made me gape the first time I heard it, and the couple of melodic solos leading you into a wild ride which will satisfy anyone with certain love for metal. A Little Time, while slower, is a nice song to follow up, and has a weird yet likeable passage of experimentation. Twilight of the Gods and Future World are two great songs, the first one being led by a melodic guitar duo. The second one was the more radio-friendly one of the album, for its catchiness and instantly likeable riff. The ballad, A Tale that Wasn’t Right is an incredibly fine one, mainly because of Kiske’s talent to sing it with passion and energy.

But this album would be nothing if it wasn’t for the incredible Halloween. This song represents the pinnacle of all Power Metal, being the finest song Helloween ever released. Clocking at almost 14 minutes, this is nothing but a fest of astounding riffs, infectious solos and masterful songwriting. The main riff should immediately catch your attention and prepare you for what’s to come. The climax arrives when after the last of the three slow passages, Hansen and Weikath start playing melodic solos in a way that leaves you pleading for more. I wanted to go back there, just to listen to those two guys playing their guitars in such a way. My God, this song is one of the best I’ve heard in my life. No kidding.

It’s hard to find any flaw here that is why this album is so important for the Power Metal scene. While the genre might turn cheesy, Keeper of the Seven Keys part 1 gets away from that as much as possible within the genre. Lyrics are what you would expect from such an album, but they are funny anyway, and they fit with the music. The album is just 37-minute long, but it is worth every damned minute of it, even the short instrumentals.

All in all, this is undoubtedly the best Power Metal album ever recorded, and every self-respected metal fan should own this. A combination of fast and catchy riffs, melodic solos, and awesome high-pitched vocals that will satisfy your need of banging your head, or your need to get melodic guitars, or you need to sing a chorus out loud. The sequel of this (Keeper of the Seven Keys part II) is also an excellent album on its own right, but fails a bit short in comparison with this sophomore record in their discography.



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user ratings (561)
Chart.
4.3
superb
other reviews of this album
Matthijs van der Lee (5)
Undoubtedly the greatest power metal album ever released. You don't even need to listen to any other...

sonictheplumber STAFF (3.5)
Keeper of the Seven Keys is a good album, but not the classic that it's hailed to be....

Mike Stagno EMERITUS (4.5)
...

peruviantrooper (5)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
VermicideReloadead
November 29th 2012



1434 Comments


Buen review amigo, este album es uno de mis favoritos en lo que a power metal se refiere. Keeper of the Seven Keys Part I y Keeper of the Seven Keys Part II son intocables, que lastima que despues de eso la banda halla decaido bien feo.

facupm
November 29th 2012



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

ya que me hablas en español...
no tengo duda de que este es el mejor album dento del genero, pero tambien me parece que es uno de los mejores dentro del metal en general, especialmente por contener a la impresionante Halloween, que sino es mi cancion preferida de todos los tiempos por ahi anda eh

Digging: Queens of the Stone Age - Songs for the Deaf

VermicideReloadead
November 29th 2012



1434 Comments


Tu nombre te delata amigo, no conozco gente que no sea hispano parlante con apellido peralta, no obstante tambien hay contendores decentes para este album, nightfall in middle-earth, burnt offerings y land of the free no se quedan atras.

facupm
November 29th 2012



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

jajaj mi apellido es demasiado español... aunque soy argentino en realidad. Con respecto a esos albumes, creo que este esta por encima de todos, aunque es subjetivo obviamente.

I fucking love this album

lostforwords
November 29th 2012



439 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I have no problem with the fact that you really like this album. I just feel I should recommend that you write as if you were adressing to people who don't really know what the record is about. If not, then you should try to offer a new or at least more accomplished perspective. try to think that you are addressing to people who must be convinced about the quality of a record. Don't feel the urge to express admiration unless you can back it up with strong argumentation, otherwise you might sound like a fanboy, which might not even be fair.
It's a good effort however, and I will give you a pos.


VermicideReloadead
November 29th 2012



1434 Comments


Facpum is a good reviewer. He reviews a lot of albums that are very good but are not the cup of tea of a lot of people.

CaptainDooRight
November 29th 2012



26459 Comments


sweet album

and i enjoyed your review, pos

Digging: Deniro Farrar - The Patriarch II

PsychicChris
November 29th 2012



194 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I like the second one a little more but this is a great one as well.

facupm
November 29th 2012



5623 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@lostforwords
I understand what you mean. Maybe I exagerated with my love towards this record. I'll take into account for my next review. Anyway, I'm not a Helloween fanboy, I like the band but this the only album I love. I'll try to be more objective next time, thanks for your feedback!



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