Sound — 10
The sound is excellent! You can hear how perfect the melodic riffs and solo's really are. The music is somewhat more complex than that of earlier albums and this is really a thing to notice, the melodic style of Blind Guardian is really taken to a new height with this album, or a different height at least. Inspired by JRR Tolkiens book, The Silmarillion.
Lyrics — 10
Since the entire album and atmosphere around it is inspired by The Silmarillion, so is the lyrics. And they are really good. They do not completely retell the story, but the parts the actually retell are told in a most delightful way! Hansi is as usual an excellent vocalist, matching the style of Blind Guardian very well!
Overall Impression — 10
It can't really be compared to any other album that I've heard because it's really no album like it. Not even former albums of Blind Guardian. Blind Guardian is my favourite band so I can't say I'd rather have any other artist either. It's just brilliant, so beautiful, and so powerful. Nightfall, A Dark Passage, Into The Storm and Thorn are my favourites from this album. I'd buy this again if it were stolen. A real, killer good album.