Blind Guardian and Tolkien

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FantasyDrummer

Blind Guardian and Tolkien

#1 Post by FantasyDrummer » 06 Aug 2013 10:16

I am writing a term paper about Blind Guardian and J.R.R. Tolkien for a lecture called Music for Middle-Earth. My presentation dealt with the influence that Tolkien had on heavy metal in general and now in my paper I have to focus on one aspect - which brought me to THE band that is associated when metal and Tolkien are mentioned.

For now I planned an in-depth analysis of the songs that deal with Tolkiens novels - focussing on lyrics and music - and compare them to the way the mentioned situations/topics are portrayed in the novels.

If you have any suggestions for me feel free to speak up. :)

Nahar
Posts: 149
Joined: 17 Aug 2002 16:59
Location: Jerusalem, Israel

Re: Blind Guardian and Tolkien

#2 Post by Nahar » 10 Aug 2013 12:39

Hi!
I gave 2 lectures analysing Nightfall in Middle Earth, and there's tons of stuff there
I think I can write about 50 pages about it.

There are many aspects to deal with and I guess you'll have to find some focus.
In general I think it's hard to analyse BG's music as a part of the Metal that was influenced by Tolkien, since it's much more detailed and deep than all the rest (as far as I could tell). I view NIME almost as an "artistic article" about the Silmarillion - that points out very interesting points and let you think about them for yourself.

Anyway..
I'd like to share with you this interview I found useful for talking about the music (till 5:20).
Here I (Tsagadar there) gave some of my lyrics analysis that you might find useful. Here's some stuff about Thorn from the same forum. And I notice now that you already saw my post here about When Sorrow Sang :)

btw, did you get a hold of the concept stories in the booklet? They come in German and English and give Maglor's insight of things (the way Hansi imagined it at least...). They can help understand the songs, though they are also a bit cryptic...

If you need more help I'll be happy to share my insights and findings.
Good luck.

P.S.
There's an article book called "Music in Middle Earth" that has an article that deals with several bands that were influenced by Tolkien (a lot on Battlelore), but as it doesn't even mention Blind Guardian I'm not really recommending it...
but you can find it here (perhaps you can find better articles to help you out in the website)
"As darkness came it brought along silence.
Yet silence also bears madness.
Silence surrounds me - a deathly silence"...

FantasyDrummer

Re: Blind Guardian and Tolkien

#3 Post by FantasyDrummer » 13 Aug 2013 12:53

Hi Nahar,

first of all I want to thank you for all the information you already provided me with.

What makes me curious is the following: How come that you held lectures on analyzing NiME? Are you a lecturer at a university or something similar?

That you mentioned the Music in Middle-Earth book makes me laugh, since the article by Cunningham, which deals with Tolkien and Black Metal was the starting point for my presentation and was recommended by my professor. Funny that you say now that it is not to recommend.

For the paper I have already read the Hobbit in total and am starting now to analyze the lyrics from the song of the same name (btw do you know why it is also called "The Bard´s Song - The Hobbit"? It confuses me a little that there are two "Bard´s songs"). Now I want to move on to LOTR and re-read the part in which the distribution of the rings of power is mentioned, since it is the main topic in the Blind Guardian song along with what I call the "travelling motif" (lyrical me describing that it is on a journey) and analyzing the lyrics of the song.

While working on that I want to read the Silmarillion and a book about musical analysis.

So you see I am filled with work (along with 2 other papers I write aside of this one).

Nahar
Posts: 149
Joined: 17 Aug 2002 16:59
Location: Jerusalem, Israel

Re: Blind Guardian and Tolkien

#4 Post by Nahar » 04 Nov 2013 23:11

FantasyDrummer wrote:Hi Nahar,

first of all I want to thank you for all the information you already provided me with.

What makes me curious is the following: How come that you held lectures on analyzing NiME? Are you a lecturer at a university or something similar?

That you mentioned the Music in Middle-Earth book makes me laugh, since the article by Cunningham, which deals with Tolkien and Black Metal was the starting point for my presentation and was recommended by my professor. Funny that you say now that it is not to recommend.

For the paper I have already read the Hobbit in total and am starting now to analyze the lyrics from the song of the same name (btw do you know why it is also called "The Bard´s Song - The Hobbit"? It confuses me a little that there are two "Bard´s songs"). Now I want to move on to LOTR and re-read the part in which the distribution of the rings of power is mentioned, since it is the main topic in the Blind Guardian song along with what I call the "travelling motif" (lyrical me describing that it is on a journey) and analyzing the lyrics of the song.

While working on that I want to read the Silmarillion and a book about musical analysis.

So you see I am filled with work (along with 2 other papers I write aside of this one).
Hi FantasyDrummer,
Thank you, and sorry for the very late reply...

I'm not a lecturer at a university but I'm part of the Tolkien fans community in my country and they are taking part in conventions where people with subjects of interest to the community volunteer to give lectures.
I study for my bachelor's degree in an art and design academy, and hoped to get a chance to talk about my research in one of the few papers I had to write, but nothing came up (though I have other fields of interest and things are fine in general :) ).

I was not talking about the Black Metal article actually, but about some others in "Music in Middle Earth". I actually remember one about Tolkien and Black Metal that was very interesting (might've been the same one. I don't remember)..

About the Bard's Song... I was wondering the same thing, and didn't really get a good answer until I realized how similar the songs are musically - it's not easy to notice at first but many of the melody lines are the same ("Now you all know the bards and their songs"... "Trolls in the dark the dawn took them all"... for example). I think the common name is mainly because it has the same musical source, but the lyrics are only, perhaps, very loosely related. I think that the demo version of "In the Forest" was also dealing with the Hobbit, btw...

About NIME.. I think you need to know the Silmarillion quite well to start analyzing it - it's spread across the whole book and it's very hard without knowing where to look. Also the Concept Stories I mentioned should be helpful and probably important, as they're a part of the album.

I guess you finished by now, but I'd be happy to hear about what you've done.
And if not, I hope I helped :)
"As darkness came it brought along silence.
Yet silence also bears madness.
Silence surrounds me - a deathly silence"...

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