Somewhere Far Beyond is one of those masterpiece must-own albums. The 1992 effort was German Power Metal legends Blind Guardian’s fourth full-length studio album and saw the band really hit their stride. Everything about this album is perfectly developed, finely honed and impressively delivered.
Opening with the beyond-catchy “Time What Is Time” the album kicks out powerfully with a brand of Melodic European Power Metal that owes as much to Bay Area Thrash acts like Testament, Exodus and Forbidden as it does to the Neoclassical and NWOBHM legends who usually inspired Power Metal bands of the same generation. People who worry that Power Metal may be too wimpy for them need a stat dose of Blind Guardian. Stylistically this isn’t the band’s most progressive release, but sees the band well on their way to heading in that direction, with a lot of song writing depth and efforts made not to just be straightforward or simplistic. Overall; Its kind of something like listening to Keeper Of The Seven Keys being covered by Kreator.
The album unleashed some of the band’s classic material, such as “The Bard’s Song” “Journey Through The Dark” and the aforementioned “Time What Is Time” and impressively the rest of the album holds up to that high standard; there’s no weak tracks and nothing worth skipping, its just all pure high quality, interesting and well written music filled to the brim with chunky riffs, blistering double-kicks, interesting melodies and catchy choruses.
Highlights include “Theater Of Pain,” “Quest For Tanelorn,” (featuring guest guitar by the legendary Kai Hansen) and the seven-minute title track.
I could go on; but really you just need to hear it for yourself. If you have any interest in Power Metal you either own this already or are probably about to own it soon, all I can really add is another happy convert’s voice to the list of many praising reviews. Give this classic a chance, you won’t be disappointed.