Back in 1988, when I was only 20 years young, my musical taste was this: Def Leppard, Europe, Bon Jovi, Treat… Melodic rock where keyboards were as important as guitars, where big choruses and catchy, radio friendly melodies were a must. Sure, I dug Iron Maiden and Judas Priest still, but I thought it was a brilliant idea when they started to use keyboards in their music. I thought that Crazy Nights was one of Kiss’ finest moments and that the fact that the keyboards were as high in the mix as the guitars was exactly how things should be. Oh Lord! Well, that year was the first time I was acquainted with Helloween for real for the first time. Sure, I knew about the band and had heard a song or two from their debut LP Walls Of Jericho (1985), but I didn’t like what I heard and dismissed them as just another useless speed metal band. See, I hated speed, thrash and black metal back then. I didn’t even like Metallica – thought they were crap. So when Helloween added lead singer Michael Kiske to take over vocals from the underwhelming Kai Hansen (Hansen’s vocals on Jericho is plain horrible) and released Keeper Of The Seven Keys in 1987, I couldn’t care less. To me, they were still a speed metal band and speed metal was crap.