Blind Guardian
Tokyo Tales


4.0
excellent

Review

by manosg STAFF
December 6th, 2014 | 31 replies


Release Date: 1993 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A highly representative live testament of Blind Guardian's speed/thrash days in front of an ecstatic audience.

Blind Guardian is one of those cases of bands that evolved their sound with each release. Beginning in the late ‘80s with strong speed/thrash influences, they shifted towards more symphonic territories with 1995’s Imaginations From The Other Side. Nevertheless before reaching to that turning point, the band released the magical Somewhere Far Beyond with anthems such as the incredible title track and “The Bard's Song (In the Forest)” among others.

Tokyo Tales comes from the tour in support of Somewhere Far Beyond and as expected comprises solely of Blind Guardian’s speed/thrash material. Moreover, as the title suggests, it was recorded during two shows in the Land of the Rising Sun in December 1992. Japan being a stronghold of melodic metal, was probably the optimal destination for a Blind Guardian live back in the beginning of the ‘90s. The crowd is very much into the music as we can hear them clapping and singing the lyrics along with Hansi Kursch which results in a very energetic performance from the band. Listening to the choruses from "The Quest for Tanelorn" or “Time what is Time” are great experiences on their own but in this live environment they’re spine tingling. Going back to the setlist, it consists of one song from Battalions of Fear, four from Follow the Blind, a whopping five from Tales from the Twilight World and just three tracks are from the then newly released Somewhere Far Beyond.

The listener can enjoy anthems such as “Journey through the Dark”, “Traveler in Time” and “Goodbye My Friend” that are not included in the band’s other live album, Live. In addition, the performance of the members is outstanding with Kursch being in top form even though he handled bass duties too at the time, the drumming is precise while the guitar duo’s chemistry is high.

On the other hand Tokyo Tales is missing the absolute peak of every Blind Guardian live set “The Bard's Song (In the Forest)” and “Somewhere Far Beyond” which is one of the best tracks in the band’s catalogue. “Lord of the Rings” has a somewhat similar feeling to “The Bard's Song (In the Forest)” but it’s not the same. In addition, Hansi Kursch could and should have interacted more with the audience.

In a nutshell, if you’re a fan of Blind Guardian’s first period, you’re in for a treat. Tokyo Tales is very representative of the band’s speed/thrash days and can also serve as a compilation to those who aren’t so familiar with that side of the German power metallers. Nevertheless, those of you who enjoy their more symphonic sound will probably find a lot of elements that you’ll enjoy as the music might be more aggressive than albums such as “A Night at the Opera” but is still very melodic.



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user ratings (70)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I know a few guys on here (including myself) are pumped for the new Blind Guardian so here you are.



Full album: http://grooveshark.com/#!/album/Tokyo+Tales/2376054



Your comments are appreciated.

Digging: Winterstorm - A Coming Storm

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


7989 Comments


Great review, pos.

I first listened to "Welcome To Dying" and "Valhalla" on the radio from this album and I was immediately hooked on the band.

Digging: Kevin Hufnagel - Messages To The Past

Ayashi
December 6th 2014


294 Comments


This is one of my favorite bands ever, and one of the few metal groups I still listen to actively. Everything is amazing. I gave their last album 4,5 two years ago, and it's still every bit as good. Will also see these guys live for the first time ever next summer. Fuaaargh

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys. Yeah this band is so easy to get addicted to with the catchy choruses and their ability to create epics just like that.



You're a lucky man Ayashi.

Tunaboy45
December 6th 2014


16570 Comments


Great review, pos. Enjoy listening to this band.

danielcardoso
December 6th 2014


11759 Comments


Great one as usual, man. Pos'd.

Titan
December 6th 2014


19088 Comments


great review manosg, pos'd

i do not own this album but based on your review, that may have to change.

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys, appreciated. Blind Guardian deserve all the love they get around here lately.

Sabrutin
December 6th 2014


5733 Comments


Good review, pos'd.

I should listen to them more, I pretty much love their debut.

Digging: An Autumn For Crippled Children - The Light of September

facupm
December 6th 2014


11327 Comments


nice one manosg! pos

i never got into blind guardian tbh, i only heard imaginations and didnt click with me as other power metal classics

CalculatingInfinity
December 6th 2014


8553 Comments


@fac: Check Somewhere Far Beyond, definately their best. Great band.

Titan
December 6th 2014


19088 Comments


@facupm

I would start with Somewhere Far Beyond and Nightfall In Middle Earth. You will love it.

rufinthefury
December 6th 2014


3080 Comments


Solid review. BG is solid through all their phases.

and nice taste manosg that Witchfynde album is incredible.

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks Sab and facu. CalculatingInfinity and Titan know. Start with Somewhere Far Beyond and see where that takes you from there. Mind you, Blind Guardian needed a few listens for me to get used to their vox and all the stuff that is happening.

Titan
December 6th 2014


19088 Comments


'and all the stuff that is happening.'

haha, right on!

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I swear man every time I listen to these guys' 90s albums I get images from Lord of the Rings. So much stuff going on haha!

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 6th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"and nice taste manosg that Witchfynde album is incredible."



Sorry man, missed your comment. The Witchfynde album kinda reminded me of Diamond Head which I love.

Nagrarok
December 7th 2014


8587 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is indeed a great live presentation of their early period, which rules. Well, most Blind Guardian rules, but I love the rawer edge they still had at this point. Nice work manosg.

CalculatingInfinity
December 7th 2014


8553 Comments


@manosg: I'd only say that for A Night at the Opera, the amount of overdubing and symphonic work on that work is mental.

manosg
Staff Reviewer
December 7th 2014


11269 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh yeah, A Night at the Opera is the apotheosis of overdubbing in their discog. Still for someone who hasn't listened to the band before, albums like Imaginations or Somewhere Far Beyond need a few listens to break into and realize everything that's going on. At least that was the case for me, haha.



@Nagrarok

Thanks man.



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