Abaddon magazine

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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Review: Blind Guardian – The God Machine

Label: Nuclear Blast

Date: September 2nd, 2022

Oh, yes! The newest album of one of the best German bands ever. Blind Guardian, in all its glory, published twelve album so far. For bands like this we say it’s just the beginning no matter how old they are. I believe so, too. It’s enough that Iron Maiden released their new album and toured this year, now Blind Guardian. I am grateful that I am alive to see the hype about new albums by such good bands.

I don’t know if I can categorise Blind Guardian to some subgenre of metal but for sure I can say the subject they are singing about is something they will be known for even when they die. Of course, that cannot happen because they live in Middle Earth forever, but I just wanted to describe their glory in the metal world. The way this band is talking about “Lord of the Rings” myths and legends can be compared with the book. By reading the lyrics you are making a new world that only your head can imagine and make.

New album even gives us modern and philosophical subjects. “The God Machine” is a layered album. More melodic and more powerful than previous ones. Religion is in its centre. Long lyrics and Mister Kursch Hansi, without whose voice nothing would be the same, are the things that make it special.

It starts with a song called “Deliver Us from Evil”, about power of prayer against all evil spirits. Like in the overture (beginning) of the opera, this song is an opening but not that strong like the next ones. It just opens us the door to the new album. I think that “Damnation” is just a continuation of “Deliver Us from Evil”, so on some level this album has its story.

My favourite song from the album, for sure, is “Secrets of the American Gods”, because it reminds me of the book “American Gods”, written by Neil Gaiman. The story is the same for all gods of all nations that are trying to reach the American dream, but they are left to misery and some of them are even dead. It’s time for something new. New age, new gods. No one believes in the old ones. Symphonic moments and a long solo are giving the special vibe to the song. It sounds more epic.

“Beyond the Spheres” is also one of the songs that will mark this album. I understood it as a call from the other side of our minds. We should make us not imagine the borders. Nowhere. Fear is what’s stopping us from great things in life. It’s not about some galaxy, far, far away.

Everything these guys are writing about is more than complex. You can make your own story from it and understand it on your own. Something that divides this album from the others is a more narrative way of storytelling. In most songs Mister Kursch doesn’t sing as much as he is talking. In the way he talks, this whole fairy tale can be told. Not many singers have that talent.

All songs keep the attention on a high level. You know there are bands whose songs are too long for no reason. Here, that is not the case. Entire six or eight minutes are really interesting. Is it me, my admiration or the songs, I don’t know but some magic is at work.

Guardians won’t be Guardians if there wasn’t something about elves, dwarves, Tolkien etc. Heavy subject, so elves have heavy destiny here in the song “Blood of the Elves”. This one will be much loved on their concerts. Maybe at the same of “Majesty” or “Guardian of the Blind”, but just maybe.

The last song that closes this fantastic album is “Destiny”. You know that time when something bad happens and you don’t know what to say except “this is my destiny”. So when all gods die, when everything goes to misery and threatens to be lost, you are the only one there with destiny in your hands.

So far we saw that Blind Guardian is that kind of band, which you can listen to in different ages and to understand it based on your experience. It’s not just “Lord of the Rings” act. It’s live, experience and life. It’s god’s machine.

Artwork is futuristic, I don’t know if it is a witch from “Deliver Us from Evil” on her broom or some kind of your “American god”, but surely very effective cover for the CD. Different from all previous albums and that makes it pretty.

Thanks Guardians for this new masterpiece we hope to see them in Serbia soon. Please!