Label. Nuclear Blast Playing Time: 159 Min Release: 07th July 2017
The release of the last Blind Guardian live album “Live” was already 14 years ago. Now they deliver a new one and that’s a heavy weight! There are almost 160 minutes of music, packed onto three CDs. Like its predecessor, “Live Beyond…” was not recorded on one single show. Instead, it is the product of multiple shows across the world, all played on the “Beyond The Red Mirror”-World Tour. In the case of “Live”, this procedure resulted in an inhomogeneous sound because the acoustics of the different shows were too different. Due to profiling amps and similar devices, “Live Beyond…” sounds very homogenous, almost as if the songs were recorded at only one show. And it is not necessary to mention that the sound itself is very great. I like the balance between the sound directly from the stage and the massive room and audience sound.
One word concerning the setlist: “Live Beyond…” is like a live best-of-album and in a way the best concert Blind Guardian never played because it . So when you are new to Blind Guardian, this is definitely one for you! But this approach comes with a lot of overlapping songs with the past live releases. Personally, I would have preferred to waive some of the “second row hits”. Some candidates would have been ‘Banish From Sanctuary’, ‘Bright Eyes’, ‘Lost In The Twilight Hall’ and ‘Majesty’. All of them are already featured on two past live releases and all of them do not belong to the biggest hits of the band. Instead of those, I would have preferred some rare tracks like ‘Guardian Of The Blind’, ‘Blood Tears’, ‘Otherland’ and ‘The Holy Grail’. Those were not featured anywhere yet. But I still have the hope that they will be released soon, maybe as a bonus track.
Nevertheless, both thumbs up for “Live Beyond The Spheres”! I am already looking for the next live album, of course – following the increase of features – on 4 CDs!