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Touched By The Crimson King

Demons & Wizards Audio CD

Price: CDN$ 13.83
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Touched By The Crimson King + Demons And Wizards
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Product Details


1. Crimson King
2. Beneath These Waves
3. Terror Train
4. Seize The Day
5. The Gunslinger
6. Love's Tragedy Asunder
7. Wicked Witch
8. Dorian
9. Down Where I Am
10. Immigrant Song
11. Lunar Lament
12. Wicked Witch (Slow Version)
13. Spatial Architects
14. Beneath These Waves (Edit)

Product Description

Product Description

Ever since the self-titled Demons & Wizards debut arrived at the stores in 2000, fans have been waiting impatiently to be fed with more songs. The fact that they had to wait five years is in the nature of things; after all, vocalist Hansi Krsch's chief occupation is his band, Blind Guardian, while guitarist Jon Schaffer has launched several major projects with his main group, Iced Earth. The overall impression of this, their second album, is marked by a certain rawness, together with an acoustic, atmospheric mood. Contains 4 bonus tracks not available on the original album that are also available on the import version. Steamnhammer. 2005.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  56 reviews
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hails To The Crimson King Aug. 15 2005
By Ken Pierce - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Taking the creative minds of Jon Schaffer and Hansi Kursch is certainly going to give you a unique Metal experience and with "Touched By The Crimson King" these two Legends certainly deliver. Given their already well-known work in Blind Guardian and Iced Earth it is pretty much expected for the combined efforts of Demons & Wizards to be nothing short of exemplary. The group also does not suffer any lag time with this second release from the project as each tune is fresh and very well put together. Originally I felt this record had more of a Blind Guardian feel to it, but lost that quickly after a few more listens. It is very important to note that this mindset of expecting either Blind Guardian or Iced Earth should be lost in order to fully appreciate this music. Use it as a frame of reference but enjoy the exponential growth this is able to offer you. Starting off the release is the title track "Touched By The Crimson King" and this is one rousing number. It also showcases the ever exciting drumming of Bobby Jarzombek (Iced Earth, Halford, Riot) who is a welcome addition to this group in my opinion. Thinking this is impressive in terms of drums will quickly have you second guessing when "Terror Train" begins. This is a blistering track and the guitar and drum feel that encompasses it speeds by you and yet is also very well laced with a technical flair. Hansi's voice is on point for the whole record as he showcases both his powerful side on numbers that dictate this be so as well as the softer side on the ballad type numbers. As I enjoy Metal ballads I found particular interest in the ones they did on this release. "Seize The Day" and "Wicked Witch" are great from a ballad standpoint.

"Beneath These Waves" is fast becoming a favorite and this holds a very traditional style to its metal content. There is a lot of this present on "Crimson King", but largely this release falls to the "Power Metal" motif more than anything else. According to Jon in a recent interview, Hansi had more to do with this release than he had as he had just become a Father and also had some health issues to deal with. Once things got back to normal pace the record was recorded and some of this piece is based on Stephen Kings "Dark Tower" books which Hansi is a fan of.

The band includes a cover of Led Zeppelins "The Immigrant Song" and it's nice to see these guys also have a little loose fun on the record. This is a high recommendation for anyone who follows their respective bands and wants to sample what the two can come up with together.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Strong Follow Up July 29 2005
By Mr D. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Who would you say are the male vocalists with the most distinctive voices you can think of? I've been thinking about that and I've come up with three vocalists who not only are easily recognizable but also add so much to their music, you just know it would even be close to the same with somebody else.

First there is Type O Negative's, Peter Steel. Then we have the Scorpion's fabulous lead singer, Klaus Meine. Last but not least, and you may not have heard of him, is Hansi Kursch of the German symphonic power metal band Blind Guardian and Hansi can belt out those amazing vocals with the best of them. Hansi is a singer, that to the unsuspecting ear may mistake him for that other great unmistakable vocalist, the late Freddie Mercury.

Demons and Wizards is a collaboration between two superlative heavy metal band's leaders, Blind Guardian and Iced Earth and this album, Touched by the Crimson King, is the second album born of this prolific union. Each band can and does stand strongly on it's own but as a unit there strengths seem to be magnified and as I started to say Blind Guardian's main strength is their incomparable singer Kursch. The singing of Kursch just lights up the music like a billboard. Even Steel and Meine cannot, in my opinion, do what Hansi does.

Touched by the Crimson King

The brand new Demons and Wizards album picks up where the self titled debut album left off. Touched by the Crimson King is sixty-six minutes of musical variety ranging from slow melodic ballads to super hard driving blockbusters. Borrowing from Jon Schaffer's Iced Earth style, we have speedy heavy percussion and guitar riffs galore, merging with the strengths of Blind Guardian, symphonic style, melodious backing vocals, lush layering of music so deep you can get lost in it, topped off by the indescribable vocals of Hansi Kursch, like a cherry on a hot fudge sundae.

Demons and Wizards is:

Hansi Kürsch - Vocals

Jon Schaffer - Rhythm, Bass, Lead and Acoustic Guitars

Guest Musicians:

Jim Morris - Guitar Solos and Backing Vocals

Bobby Jarzombek - Drums

Rubin Drake - Bass & Fretless Bass Guitar

Howard Helm - Piano and Backing Vocals

Kathy Helm - Backing Vocals

Tori Fuson - Backing Vocals

Jesse Morris - Backing Vocals

Krystyna Kolaczynski - Cello

Conclusion

For those who haven't picked up on it, this is a concept album, based upon the famous (or infamous, depending of your point of view) Gunslinger series of Stephen King.

I have read where at least one reviewer said he didn't like this as well as the original D&W release because it wasn't as homogenous as the first one. This is precisely why I like this one. I love the variety and the strong melodies that permeate this wonderful recording.

Just like a Blind Guardian album, there is too much too absorb here in one setting, This album gets better and better the more you hear it. I was going to give it a high three stars or a low four stars at first, forgetting my own admonitions from reviews past but no this is a great, great album. High five stars. If you like Iced Earth or Blind Guardian, don't ask questions, just buy it. If you like Heavy or Symphonic Metal, listen to samples if you must, then buy it and if you don't like it at first, give it at least four or five spins. If you still don't like it, you don't really like Heavy Metal.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every Bit as Good as the First! July 1 2005
By MetalMarc - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Before this album was released I was reading many reviews that said CK did not stack up to the debut album. I was very pleasantly surprised when I popped this album in to find out that it is definately as good if not better than their debut. I think the main reason is the songs are better front to back. Sure there was some killer tracks on the first album but there were also a few songs that I didn't care for either. I can't think of a dull track on this album.

The combination of John's hammering rhythms and Hansi layered vocal harmonies create a great atmosphere and unique sounds. There is quite an even mix of heavy and acoustic parts again as John's acoustic playing really shines on this album. Usually I get turned off by too much mellow stuff on a metal album but Demons and Wizards pull if off so well I can't help but like it. Don't worry there is still a lot of heavy songs and most parts that start mellow always kick in and get heavy. Like I said before I like every song on the album but my personal highlights include 'Beneath these Waves' killer song and great chorus!, 'Loves Tragedy Asunder' a powerballad done right, 'Down Where I Am' another powerballad, can't explain why I like it so much, and 'Lunar Lament' supposedly a bonus track but one of the best IMO.

Overall this album exeeded my expectations. Not sure if was because of the previous reviews I read or the fact that I didn't care for the last Iced Earth album TGB. Irregardless I see no reason why anyone who liked the first one won't dig CK just as much. Who knows you may even like it better.

My rating for CK is 9/10 while I'd give the first album 8.5/10
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Demons and Wizards is Back Oct. 8 2005
By Mr D. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
Who would you say are the male vocalists with the most distinctive voices you can think of? I've been thinking about that and I've come up with three vocalists who not only are easily recognizable but also add so much to their music, you just know it would even be close to the same with somebody else.

First there is Type O Negative's, Peter Steel. Then we have the Scorpion's fabulous lead singer, Klaus Meine. Last but not least, and you may not have heard of him, is Hansi Kursch of the German symphonic power metal band Blind Guardian and Hansi can belt out those amazing vocals with the best of them. Hansi is a singer, that to the unsuspecting ear may mistake him for that other great unmistakable vocalist, the late Freddie Mercury.

Demons and Wizards is a collaboration between two superlative heavy metal band's leaders, Blind Guardian and Iced Earth and this album, Touched by the Crimson King, is the second album born of this prolific union. Each band can and does stand strongly on it's own but as a unit there strengths seem to be magnified and as I started to say Blind Guardian's main strength is their incomparable singer Kursch. The singing of Kursch just lights up the music like a billboard. Even Steel and Meine cannot, in my opinion, do what Hansi does.

The brand new Demons and Wizards album picks up where the self titled debut album left off. Touched by the Crimson King is sixty-six minutes of musical variety ranging from slow melodic ballads to super hard driving blockbusters. Borrowing from Jon Schaffer's Iced Earth style, we have speedy heavy percussion and guitar riffs galore, merging with the strengths of Blind Guardian, symphonic style, melodious backing vocals, lush layering of music so deep you can get lost in it, topped off by the indescribable vocals of Hansi Kursch, like a cherry on a hot fudge sundae.

Demons and Wizards is:

Hansi Kürsch - Vocals

Jon Schaffer - Rhythm, Bass, Lead and Acoustic Guitars

Guest Musicians:

Jim Morris - Guitar Solos and Backing Vocals

Bobby Jarzombek - Drums

Rubin Drake - Bass & Fretless Bass Guitar

Howard Helm - Piano and Backing Vocals

Kathy Helm - Backing Vocals

Tori Fuson - Backing Vocals

Jesse Morris - Backing Vocals

Krystyna Kolaczynski - Cello

Conclusion

For those who haven't picked up on it, this is a concept album, based upon the famous (or infamous, depending of your point of view) Gunslinger series of Stephen King.

I have read where at least one reviewer said he didn't like this as well as the original D&W release because it wasn't as homogenous as the first one. This is precisely why I like this one. I love the variety and the strong melodies that permeate this wonderful recording.

Just like a Blind Guardian album, there is too much too absorb here in one setting, This album gets better and better the more you hear it. I was going to give it a high three stars or a low four stars at first, forgetting my own admonitions from reviews past but no this is a great, great album. High five stars. If you like Iced Earth or Blind Guardian, don't ask questions, just buy it. If you like Heavy or Symphonic Metal, listen to samples if you must, then buy it and if you don't like it at first, give it at least four or five spins. If you still don't like it, you don't really like Heavy Metal.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not excellent July 10 2005
By Shotz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
I remember a few years back when i got the first D&W album. i really didnt like any of the tracks besides "Blood on my Hands" for quite a while (besides the remake of White Room). after a few times letting the album play through, it really began to grow on me. Now i love almost the entire cd. but back to this new release.

The latest CD by Schaffer and Kursch is lacking in power compared to the first release. The album starts off on a good, powerful, and heavy note with Crimson King. a track more mystical and somewhat along the lines of something produced by Lucca Turilli but with the classic Iced Earth/Blind Guardian power. then the next two tracks (Beneath these Waves and Terror Train) are pure power metal at its finest. The strength of Iced Earth style musical background music and the excellence of Hansi's vocals. Im a big fan of Blind Guardian and Iced Earth both, and if both bands had merged in their beginnings, this cd is what would have come from it.

As the CD progresses, the songs begin to slow down. Seize the Day is a slower, more ballad like song (comparable to the Whistler on the previous cd). Yeah, i know i compare this to the previous cd a lot, but its the best way to convene the description of the cd to those who havent heard it.

Next up is the Gunslinger, with a very slow intro, the song picks up about midway through and (although it doesnt match the first three tracks) it does become quite good with lots of nice heavy riffs and a decent drum solo.

The next two tracks are for those who like a little slower music. actually, a LOT slower. Loves Tragedy Asunder is a decent and somewhat catchy track, but Wicked Witch needs more work IMO. it really lacks something.

The CD then picks up again with Dorian. Although comparably weak, its still a good track. I think it belongs more at the beginning of the CD.

Up next, Down Where I Am. Slow, but ok. not much to say about it really.

Immigrant Song: not as good a cover as White Room, but it puts a whole new spin on the Led Zepplin classic!

Then the bonus tracks, two are self-explanatory, but the other two are actually good. Spatial architects can be the sole reason for anyone to want the bonus track edition. Lunar Lament follows along about the same path, but its not as good as Spatial Architects.

Overall the CD sounds to me like Iced Earth replaced Jon Schaffer with Hansi Kursch (not a bad idea either).

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