Helloween – Unarmed: Best Of 25th Anniversary

Helloween - Unarmed: Best Of 25th Anniversary

HELLOWEEN
UNARMED: BEST OF 25TH ANNIVERSARY
Released 2009 (JVC/Victor), 2010 (Sony/SPV/The End Records)

Track List:
01. Dr. Stein
02. Future World
03. If I Could Fly
04. Where The Rain Grows
05. The Keeper’s Trilogy
06. Eagle Fly Free
07. Perfect Gentleman
08. Forever & One
09. I Want Out
10. Fallen To Pieces
11. A Tale That Wasn’t Right
12. Why
Bonus DVD Digipack Track List:
01. Making Of “Unarmed”
02. Making Of “Dr. Stein” Videoclip
03. Videoclip “Dr. Stein”
04. Unarmed – 25th Anniversary – The Interview

Band:
Andi Deris – vocals
Michael Weikath – guitar
Sascha Gerstner – guitar
Markus Grosskopf – bass
Dani Loble – drums

Additional Musicians:
Harriet Ohlsson – vocals
Andreas Becker – guitar
Matthias Ulmer – piano
Nippy Noya – percussion
Gero Drnek – accordion
Albie Donnelly – saxophone
Prague Symphonic Orchestra

Production:
Produced by Charlie Bauerfeind.

Review:
German power metal pioneers Helloween‘s contribution to the subgenre can’t be denied. Still an active unit, though their popularity is mainly abroad these days, Helloween celebrate their 25th year of existence in 2010 with the release of Unarmed: Best Of 25th Anniversary.

  Unarmed is a best of collection with a twist, that being that the tracks in question have been re-worked, re-arranged and re-interpreted. The best way to describe Unarmed is to imagine Helloween‘s hits done in the style of Page/Plant‘s Unledded, the ScorpionsMoment Of Glory and Dokken‘s One Live Night — then you’d get the general concept behind this collection. While stripping down classics to nearly acoustic form, incorporating both choirs and a symphony seems passe in 2010, the Helloween classics lend themselves very well to this new treatment.

  Kudos to Helloween for not taking the predictable route and issuing a run of the mill hits collection, that would have been way too easy. It would have also been calculated to record another live DVD or CD and put it out there for a quick cash grab. In the end Unarmed is a celebration of the past, while at the same time giving the fans something new and fresh.

  The only track that may truly shock the listener is the re-worked “Dr. Stein” and its heavy use of the saxophone — it’s different, however I can’t say it does much for the song. “If I Could Fly” is found here in stripped down form and works wonderfully, as does “I Want Out,” but without a doubt the best track on Unarmed is “The Keeper’s Trilogy.” The trilogy steals the show half way through the album and sets the bar so high that not much can follow it.

  You know that old saying that ‘everything old is new again’? Well, nothing can be more true for Helloween on Unarmed.

  www.helloween.org – www.myspace.com/helloween – www.theendrecords.com

Reviewed by Ruben Mosqueda for Sleaze Roxx, January 2010.

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