Helloween & Gamma Ray

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween and Gamma Ray (including weekly poll)

Alright, I decided on the three songs. It took me at least 4 listenings, but it was good because the album has grown more on me than when it came out. Imo track 8, 9 and 10 are still filler and the rest varies from listenable to good. There are no real stand-outs compared to most other Helloween albums. In the end I had to make a choice and picked these three:

1. Dreambound
The fantasy/science-fiction kind of computergame intro provides some nostalgic feeling and right after that the great melodic riffs kick in. Helloween in optima forma! There are not so many bands with such driving pace. Impossible to not move the head. :) The instrumental part is less strong compared to other songs but the beginning, the couplets, chorusses and ending are very strong.

2. Heaven Tells No Lies
I am especially impressed by the instrumental part. Atmospherical stuff accompanied by excellent solos.

3. The Bells Of The 7 Hells
The song has quite some repetitive parts but I find the part from 2.18 til 2.50 so mindblowing that this song really deserves to be in this top 3.
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Gambling With The Devil" (H)

Perhaps a bit off-topic here, but my friend and I discovered something quite interesting.  He pointed out that Gamma Ray's "It's a Sin" (from the Power Plant album) had the same beginning melody as The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner.  I listened to both, and realised he was right.  However, I had a distant memory that the song wasn't by Gamma Ray originally, and after checking, I found out that it's originally by the Pet Shop Boys.  At this point I was a bit afraid that Maiden had stolen the melody, but again, I checked, and Maiden's song came out a year before the Pet Shop Boys' one.  So is it possible that they stole the melody from Maiden?

Yes, a bit off topic, but it started with Gamma Ray.  And Gamma Ray have ripped off a lot of Maiden and Priest songs on their last albums, which is why I originally started investigating.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Gambling With The Devil" (H)

Interesting, I never heard the similarity, I'll check it as soon as that album comes along. :)

I agree 100% with your last sentence Invader. I long back to the older GR days when they put more of themselves into their music.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Album 3: Gamma Ray - Insanity And Genius (1993)
 

GuineaPig

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Wow.  This is easy.

For the sole future purpose of this poll, Kai kindly only wrote 3 good songs for this album, and then ordered them for me as well.  They are, of course:

1. Tribute to the Past
2. No Return
3. Last Before the Storm
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

I haven't heard this album before, so no idea.  I may contribute some day in the future if I happen to listen to this album.
 

GuineaPig

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Invader said:
I haven't heard this album before, so no idea.  I may contribute some day in the future if I happen to listen to this album.

Trust me, you need only listen to the aforementioned tracks.  It's probably GR's worst CD.
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Worse than Majestic or No World Order? :huh:

I actually haven't heard the entirety of either of those albums, but I've heard they're pretty bad.
 

GuineaPig

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Invader said:
Worse than Majestic or No World Order? :huh:

I actually haven't heard the entirety of either of those albums, but I've heard they're pretty bad.

I like No World Order, and Majestic has its moments.  But Insanity and Genuis is reaaaaaalll bad.
 

Onhell

Infinite Dreamer
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

From what I've heard, yes, "worse" than those two, but the two you mentioned, I'll go deeper into it when we come to them, are REALLY good... I'll leave it at that for now. I also don't own that one, but from the reviews I read, this is the beginning of something good for GR, after all they followed it up with Land of the Free... So again it's about taste. After all I LOVE Helloween's Chameleon when 99.9% of people despise it :)
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

In all honesty: I don't mind criticism but I hope that the newbies won't let themselves be influenced too much by other's tastes before they take a listen themselves.

The point of this poll is almost the opposite: to share passion or to create interest. To select three tracks, no matter if you hate or love the album. As long as you know it well enough to choose.

I agree that I find this record one of the weakest. Still I like it better than Majestic (and Chameleon ;) ) and I find it no fair judgement to only listen to three tracks.
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

I'll no doubt listen to it some day; it's just when that day comes.  I'll probably give a good listen to the entireties of No World Order and Majestic, just because I prefer Kai's vocals over Ralf Scheepers'.  I think Kai is too often remembered as a guitarist and songwriter, while he's a great singer and an amazing frontman.  The first (and only) time I saw Gamma Ray live, I liked them though I had never even listened to their music; and that I can attribute to Kai's awesome spirit and energy he puts into his performance.  I don't think I've ever seen a musician look so 100% into and "happy" (though that's the wrong word) with what he's doing on stage.
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

I'd like to see them soon again! There's indeed a tremendous feeling of joy when those guys play!

Hereby a repost of the clip my wife made.

For all eternity..!!  :yey:
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

1. Last Before the Storm (a good impression of the later path Scheepers took)
2. Insanity and Genius (quite unique track in the Gamma Ray catalogue, reminds me a bit of the band Fight with a touch of Maiden in the pre-couplets)
3. No Return

Two other tracks which came close: The ballad 18 Years, featuring some nice delicate guitar work and the opening Tribute to the Past which has its moments but at the same time some parts remind me too much of Ride The Sky.
 

GuineaPig

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Insanity And Genius" (G)

Forostar said:
Two other tracks which came close: The ballad 18 Years, featuring some nice delicate guitar work and the opening Tribute to the Past which has its moments but at the same time some parts remind me too much of Ride The Sky.

That's a bad thing?!?!?!?!

If more Helloween songs were like Ride the Sky, they'd be a much better band!
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 2" (H)

Album 4: Helloween - Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 2 (1988)
 

Invader

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 2" (H)

Very good album full of good songs, but I'm going with the best live ones.  It was hard leaving out March of Time though.

1. I Want Out
2. Dr. Stein
3. Eagle Fly Free
 

GuineaPig

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 2" (H)

Very easy.  Once again only a couple of tunes that I like.

1. I Want Out
2. March of Time
3. Eagle Fly Free
 

Forostar

Ancient Mariner
Re: Helloween & Gamma Ray - current poll: "Keeper of the Seven Keys Part 2" (H)

You must really enjoy this band.  :D
 
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