Vocalist Hansi Kürsch of German power metallers BLIND GUARDIAN was recently interviewed on Bulgaria's Tangra Mega Rock radio about "Memories Of A Time To Come", the ultimate collection of BLIND GUARDIAN music from 1987 to 2011, which will be released on January 20, 2012 via Virgin/EMI. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
Tangra Mega Rock: Compilation albums and collections and Best Of albums have grown a little jaded, so what is the special thing about this one?
Hansi: "Well, basically, the special thing is of course the BLIND GUARDIAN music. But, in general, we treated it like a regular studio album which means we did a remix for all the old stuff and we did some re-recordings of some other classic material. We did a version of 'And Then There Was Silence' which is a fourteen-minute song which we did completely new. As well as we did a new version of 'Valhalla' with Kai Hansen [GAMMA RAY] and some other amazing stuff, so all in all, if you listen to the album it will be like a roller coaster ride throughout our whole career with a new sound experience."
Tangra Mega Rock: Recording new versions of these particular two songs, does it mean that you've been living through the years with the bitter feeling that you could have done better? That something was missing on the original versions, or is there another reason?
Hansi: "The simple reason is we liked these songs and we had the feeling we could just try out and see where we would end up ten, twenty years later. It was obvious for us that we would work on a song like 'And Then There Was Silence' again, because ever since we have recorded this one, there was so much more to say about this one or in this particular tune. With the others it was more a sort of taking back some nostalgic feelings."
"Memories Of A Time To Come" will be available as a double CD, three-CD deluxe limited edition, including the band's demo recordings when they were called LUCIFER'S HERITAGE, and as download.
Commented the band: "Finally, after all these years, we have found the time to gather our most worthy songs into a best of compilation, representative of our career's first 25 years.
"From the very beginning it was important for us to undertake this project only if we could put the necessary time and attention to detail into it. With overwhelming nostalgia we have looked back on 25 years and came up with 'Memories Of A Time To Come', an organic mixture of some of our greatest songs.
"With the exception of 'Sacred Worlds', all songs on 'Memories of a Time to Come' have been remixed while 'The Bard's Song - The Hobbit', 'Valhalla' as well as 'And Then There Was Silence' have been re-recorded.
"This album contains some very pleasant surprises for the die-hard BLIND GUARDIAN fan and delivers a perfect image of our musical spirit to those who are not, or just loosely, familiar with the band. 'Memories Of A Time To Come' precisely defines our progression and the long-standing dedication to our music. We are proud to present an album that will take the listener on a musical voyage. This year's Christmas will be in January!"
01. Imaginations From The Other Side (7:11) *
02. Nightfall (5:34) *
03. Ride Into Obsession (4:46) *
04. Somewhere Far Beyond (7:32) *
05. Majesty (7:29) *
06. Traveler In Time (6:01) *
07. Follow The Blind (7:11) *
08. The Last Candle (6:03) *
01. Sacred Worlds (9:17)
02. This Will Never End (5:07) *
03. Valhalla (5:13) **
04. Bright Eyes (5:15) *
05. Mirror Mirror (5:09) *
06. The Bard's Song (In The Forest) (3:26) *
07. The Bard's Song (The Hobbit) (3:41) **
08. And Then There Was Silence (14:06) **
CD 3: (only available with the deluxe limited edition)
01. Brian ***
02. Halloween (The Wizard's Crown) ***
03. Lucifer's Heritage ***
04. Symphonies Of Doom ***
05. Dead Of The Night ***
07. Trial By The Archon
08. Battalions Of Fear
09. Run For The Night
10. Lost In The Twilight Hall
12. Ashes To Ashes
13. Time What Is Time
14. A Past And Future Secret
15. The Script For My Requiem
* Remixed 2011
** Re-recorded 2011
*** Reworked 2011
An audio sample of an orchestral version of"The Bard's Song (In The Forest)" can be streamed in the YouTube clip below.
BLIND GUARDIAN is currently collaborating with Germany's best fantasy author Markus Heitz on an orchestral album which is expected to be released in 2012.
"At The Edge Of Time", the tenth studio album from BLIND GUARDIAN, sold around 4,400 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 108 on The Billboard 200 chart. The CD landed at position No. 1 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
BLIND GUARDIAN's previous CD, "A Twist In The Myth", opened with 3,000 units back in September 2006.
"At The Edge Of Time" entered the German Media Control chart at position No. 2 — the band's strongest chart showing ever in its home country.