Hansi Kursh (Vocals) and Andre Olbrich(Guitars) met at school in 1985, and discovered that they were both very interested in metal. They formed a band called Lucifer's Heritage, and from the beginning had the ambition to become professional musicians. They released two demo-versions of "Symphonies of Doom" and "Battalions of Fear" in 1985 that were quite successful, especially the latter. After that bards decided to change the name of their band into something less drastic than "Lucifer's Heritage" and so the new name became Blind Guardian. The rest of the lineup was solidified in 1986 when Marcus, Andre, and Thom joined the band. They received their first record deal with a young, independent label called No Remorse Records.
At this point the band consisted of: Hansi Kursch – vocals and sometimes bass guitar, Andre Olbrich – lead guitar and backing vocals, Marcus Siepen – lead guitar too and rhythm guitar,and Thomas Stauch - drums. The band came into existence in the small German town of Krefeld (their recording studio is still in the suburbs of this town) and was influenced by RPGs and the metal band Helloween.
Two demo-versions of "Symphonies of Doom" and "Battalions of Fear" released in 1985 were quite successful for this band, especially the latter. After that bards decided to change the name of their band into something less drastic than "Lucifer's Heritage" and so the new name became Blind Guardian.
Having signed a contract with No Remorse Records in 1986, they released their first album named Battalions of Fear. The influence of Tolkien’s trilogy "The Lord of the Rings" was quite obvious in that album, especially in Majesty. There are also titles related to it: By the Gates of Moria and Gandalf's Rebirth.
Follow the Blind was released the following year (1988). Kai Hansen from Helloween took part in the recording of this album (at No Remorse director’s will). You can hear his voice as a backing vocal in "Valhalla" and "Banished from Sanctuary".
However, a new album released in 1990 'Tales from the Twilight World' opened a new era in the history of this metal band. The album included compositions that joined the heaviness of the traditional metal and melody that developed Blind Guardian’s absolutely unique style of music. The cover-art was created by Andreas Marshall, a veteran of cover-art design for popular metal bands. The album also included live version of "Run for the Night" from Battalions.
Having signed a contract in 1991 with Virgin Records (for No Remorse went bankrupt), Blind Guardian released 'Somewhere Far Beyond' in 1992 . Melodic ballads in this album are mixed with heavy classical metal compositions. The Bard’s Songs had to become the singles but did not. due to the lack of promotion. Another acoustic ballad by Blind Guardian "In the Forest" turned to be even better than the first one. The album also included two covers – Queen’s "Spread Your Wings" and "Trial by Fire" by Satan.
One year later following the Deep Purple the band recorded live album in Japan named Tokyo Tales (1993). The album consisted of records made during BG’s Japanese tour. The album recorded in 1995 was called 'Imaginations From the Other Side'. It was released with the help and guidance of Flemming Rasmussen, who had previously worked with Metallica. IFTOS is considered by many to be the best album in all history of BG.
In 1996, Blind Guardian recorded 'Forgotten Tales' which was more like a greatest hits album with some rare tracks as well as covers from groups such as The Beach Boys.
In April 1998, their new album 'Nightfall in Middle-Earth' was released, the biggest album by the number of compositions. As it follows from the title, the album was based on the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, mainly Silmarillion. Inside the legal CD box (by hearsay) you can find some chapters from Silmarillion that were used for creating lyrics for the songs. At this time, Hansi Kursch focused more upon his singing than bass playing, and during the tour that followed the album release, bassist Oliver Holdswarth was invited to join the band temporarily.
In 2002, BG released the long awaited, "A Night At The Opera". Opera is a BIG album in every sense: musically, thematically, structurally and especially performance and production-wise. It sounds like a metal band, orchestra and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir all rolled into one. Some songs on Opera feature upwards of 100 separate tracks, and when you hear the soaring choruses or the dizzying leadwork of “Wait For An Answer” or “Sadly Sings Destiny,” for example, the effect is almost overwhelming. To top it all, Blind Guardian produced “And Then There Was Silence”, a 14-minute opus amazingly released as the album’s first single, which took four months to record