BLIND GUARDIAN, Ex-NIGHTWISH Singers Added To 20th Anniversary NUCLEAR BLAST Compilation

February 10, 2007

RAGE guitarist Victor Smolski is working on a compilation CD to celebrate Nuclear Blast Records' 20th anniversary, entitled "Into the Light". Smolski composed, recorded and produced about 10 songs for various metal artists that are part of the Nuclear Blast history, including a track that is being recorded and performed by his own band.

Commented Smolski: "It's a great honor for me working at a large contract, a compilation CD for the 20th anniversary of Nuclear Blast. It will be an album with 10 songs of various metal bands of Nuclear Blast history, [and it will include] a new RAGE song, for which I composed, produced and recorded all guitars, keyboards and bass. I got support by Andre Hilgers (drums) and Peavy Wagner (lyrics). Except some vocal parts, all songs were recorded at VPS studio in Hamm, where Charly Czajkovski again did a great job.

"During composing I tried, making all songs stylistic, and concerning the pitch of the voice, much comfortable for the singer. I didn't figure out, that, beside hearing out the different styles of the bands, the composing and arranging, I had lots of stress while doing clerical work as mailing and phoning. Thanks a lot to all singers for good cooperation. I think, this compilation CD is a real special and important project for Nuclear Blast. Special thanks also to Andy Siry, Jaap Wagemaker and Achim Köhler for support."

The details of the ten songs are as follows:

* Title: "In the Picture"
Vocalist: Tarja Turunen (ex-NIGHTWISH)

Victor: "This last mid-tempo song of the CC develops itself from the ballad-like beginning to a catchy chorus, which is a good example for how harmonic a powerful metal song can fit to Tarja's classical voice. The lyrics deal with the subject, if there were any other existences, and even if we faced directly with the facts, would we believe our eyes?"

* Title: "Slaves of the Desert"
Vocalist: Hansi Kürsch (BLIND GUARDIAN)

Victor: "A long, both groovy and also progressive metal tune, with an interesting structure in the song itself, as well as in harmonics, containing many catchy metal riffs and some arrangement parts for big choir, like Hansi is famous for the several voices work with BLIND GUARDIAN. The song is in a sense about the question, if there is an alien-like existence or even something like a strange population somewhere out there."

* Title: "Dirty Wings"
Vocalist: Tobias Sammet (EDGUY)

Victor: "The opener — one of my favorite songs — is a catchy tune with a real nice melodic chorus, which fits perfect to Tobi's emotional voice. The song lyrics are about a person, who comes back to do it better after he fell, in spite of the mistakes he did."

* Title: "Death is Alive"
Vocalist: Mats Leven (THERION)

Victor: "This is a bombastic dragging song, which contains a lot of dynamic and interesting voice arrangements. (Mats Leven's all-round voice makes you almost feel, like the death in person is singing to you — being a great contrast to the female angel backing [vocals]). A fictional story about immortallity, similar to the Highlander theme."

* Title: "Inner Sanctuary"
Vocalist: Marco Hietala (NIGHTWISH, TAROT)

Victor: "Here we have an almost up-tempo piece, beginning first with a guitar riff, followed by a celtic-like keyboard line, developing later on into a metal song with the mix of powerful orchestration and calm keyboard arrangements, which often is used by NIGHTWISH. The lyrics of the song deal with the fact that life is causing deep wounds sometimes, so it's good, when you have an inner refuge to reflect, an inner sanctuary, where you can regenerate."

* Title: "Terrified"
Vocalist: Peavy Wagner (RAGE)

Victor: "Especially recording a new RAGE song together with Peavy was great fun. There are lots of fast double-bass parts, but also many groovy stuff and great melodies in chorus at 'Terrified', the title of the song. Again, I tuned down the guitars to 'C,' as I did at 'Straight To Hell'. The song really worked out well. The lyrics are describing an inner relief."

* Title: "Bloodsucker"
Vocalist: Schmier (DESTRUCTION)

Victor: "Real trashy number with 200 double-bass. The song deals with the current crisis in Iraq war and their causes (failed U.S. politics)."

* Title: "A Perfect Day"
Vocalist: Andy Deris (HELLOWEEN)

Victor: "Straight HELLOWEEN-style metal song with a catchy chorus. The song deals with the incalculability of life and the associated fact that our end can overtake us any time."

* Title: "Ruling the World"
Vocalist: Tony Kakko (SONATA ARCTICA)

Victor: "Straight metal number with several voices and and keyboard arrangements. The song is about the arrogant power politics of the western great powers."

* Title: "Eternally"
Vocalist: Oddleif Stensland (COMMUNIC)

Victor: "Very slow ballad — heavy and modern. It's about suicide. Too often, especially young people in crisis decide to end their life, without getting straight about the irreversibility of this act."

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