Reach Out For The Light
The Seven Angels
Shelter From The Rain
What Kind Of Love
Where Clock Hands Freeze
Savior In The Clockwork
Dweller In A Dream
Unchain The Light
Wake Up To The Moon
Requiem For A Dream
Michael Kiske born January 24, 1968, is a German singer best known as the lead vocalist for the German Power Metal band Helloween.
After he left the band in 1993, Michael Kiske recorded four solo albums participated on various metal and rock related projects, such as Avantasia, Place Vendome and Kiske/Somerville.
Michael Kiske also performed with numerous bands as a guest vocalist.
In 2009 he formed the band Unisonic and began touring again after 17 years.
In October 2016, Michael joined Helloween and Kai Hansen for the Pumpkins United World Tour that continued through 2017 and 2018.
A live recording of the Helloween tour, entitled United Alive, released in 2019, and a new Helloween album with Kiske and Hansen is planned for 2020.
Prior to joining Helloween, Michael sang with the German band I'll Prophecy at the age of 17.
The band recorded a demo, but it was never released commercially.
Helloween 1986–1993, 2017–present
At the age of eighteen, Michael Kiske was asked to join the German power metal band Helloween, which was fronted by singer/guitarist Kai Hansen.
Kai Hansen had some difficulties being both the lead guitarist and lead vocalist, and it was decided that a new vocalist would be needed.
Michael rejected Helloween's first offer, because he disliked the sound of the band's Walls Of Jericho album, but accepted the second and joined Helloween in late 1986.
Michael's first album with the band was 1987's Keeper Of The Seven Keys: Part I, widely considered to be one of Helloween's best albums and a milestone in the creation of the Power Metal genre.
The album's worldwide success enabled the band to embark on an extensive world tour and perform at famous festivals such as Monsters Of Rock.
Helloween went on to release Keeper Of The Seven Keys Part II in 1988, which went gold in Germany and brought even more success than its predecessor.
The Keeper Of The Seven Keys albums proved to be highly influential and aided in the formation of a new wave of European Power Metal bands, such as Blind Guardian, Stratovarius, HammerFall and Edguy.
After the completion of the band's 1988 headlining tour, the album Live in the UK was released, while Kai Hansen left the band and was replaced by guitarist Roland Grapow.
Legal disputes with their record company, prevented Helloween from releasing new material until 1991's Pink Bubbles Go Ape, which was followed by 1993's Chameleon.
These two albums saw the band moving away from their Power Metal roots and experimenting with different sounds.
Both Pink Bubbles Go Ape and Chameleon were commercial failures and resulted in Kiske leaving Helloween.
Michael Kiske was fired from the band in 1993, reportedly for personal reasons.
He was replaced by Pink Cream 69's Andi Deris, who has remained with Helloween ever since.
Michael was rumored to be Bruce Dickinson's replacement, after he left Iron Maiden in 1993, but the position was filled by Blaze Bayley.
In 2016 it was announced that Michael Kiske would join Helloween, together with Kai Hansen, for a reunion tour that would take place during 2017 and 2018.
The Pumpkins United World Tour started in October 2017 in South America and continued in Europe with concerts lasting close to three hours.
On December 8 2017 the single Pumpkins United, featuring the reunited line-up, was released.
The reunion tour continued throughout 2018 in Japan, Russia, Ukraine, European summer festivals, North America, Canada, Latin America and Europe.
The Pumpkins United World Tour was the biggest one in the band's history as it comprised 69 shows and lasted for 14 months.
In August 2018 it was announced that a live release entitled United Alive and United Alive in Madrid is planned for October 2019 and a new studio album with Kiske and Hansen is due to be released in 2020.
Solo work 1996–2000
On August 16 1996 three years after leaving Helloween, Michael Kiske released his first solo album Instant Clarity.
The album featured guest appearances by Adrian Smith of Iron Maiden, Kai Hansen and Ciriaco Taraxes and contained songs in a wide variety of styles.
A music video for the ballad Always dedicated to deceased Helloween drummer Ingo Schwichtenberg was filmed and produced in New York City.
In the same year he also wrote a book, Kunst Und Materialismus which is only available in German Instant Clarity was reissued in 2006 with the addition of 4 bonus tracks.
His second solo album, Readiness to Sacrifice, which included some songs by Ciriaco Taraxes, was released in Korea and Japan in 1999 and in Europe in 2001.
The music on the album featured Michael moving completely away from his Heavy Metal roots and even contained two Symphonic songs.
In 2003 out of desire to make rock music again, Michael Kiske formed a project, named SupaRed.
They released a self-titled album in January 2003.
This album had a modern rock sound and a song structure, distinct from both his solo albums and the Heavy Metal sound of Helloween.
The project was under promoted and unsuccessful and he dissolved the band.
In 2006 Michael Kiske released his third full-length solo album under the name Kiske.
The album contained songs in a mellow, acoustic singer-songwriter style and was a step away from the sound of his previous solo albums.
According to Michael It's a healthy careless and musically free album.
I am very proud of this record because it is a true statement from myself.
In 2008 Michael Kiske released his fourth solo work, entitled Past in Different Ways.
The album contained acoustic re-arrangements of his old Helloween material and one new song.
According to Michael Kiske the album on one hand shows that I don't reject my past just because I'm a different person today, and on the other hand it can maybe give people who were part of that past a different view at those songs.
Avantasia since 2000
In 2000 Tobias Sammet vocalist of the band Edguy, asked Michael Kiske to participate in the rock opera project Avantasia.
Michael agreed to sing on the project, in the role of Lugaid Vandroiy, but only under the nickname Ernie.
The nickname was printed on the back of the first Avantasia release, The Metal Opera, but not on the sequel, The Metal Opera Part II, where he was featured under his real name.
Michael said in interviews that at that time, he did not want people to link him to Heavy Metal anymore.
He had a main role in the concept of the Metal Opera albums and performed on the songs Reach Out For The Light, Breaking Away, Farewell, Avantasia, The Tower, The Seven Angels and No Return.
In 2007 he recorded guest vocals for two Avantasia tracks; Promised Land and Lost In Space the Extended Version,
both of which appeared on the Lost in Space Part I & II compilation album Promised Land was also featured on the EP Lost In Space Part II.
In 2008 Michael took part in the Avantasia album The Scarecrow, singing lead on the track Shelter From The Rain and backing on the title track and on What Kind Of Love.
In 2010 Michael Kiske performed on the Avantasia albums The Wicked Symphony and Angel Of Babylon, singing on the tracks Wastelands, Runaway Train and Stargazers.
Between November and December, he also took part in The Metal Opera Comes to Town Tour, sharing the stage with Tobias Sammet, Kai Hansen, Jorn Lande, Bob Catley, Amanda Somerville, Sascha Paeth, and Oliver Hartmann among others.
On August 6 2011 Michael performed with Avantasia at Wacken Open Air.
In 2013 Michael Kiske took part in the Avantasia album The Mystery Of Time, singing on the songs Where Clock Hands Freeze, Savior In The Clockwork and Dweller In A Dream.
Between April and August he also participated on The Mystery World Tour, which included 10 European festival appearances in South America, Japan, Russia and Europe.
On August 2 2014 Michael Kiske performed with Avantasia at Wacken Open Air once again.
In 2016 Michael Kiske participated in the Avantasia album Ghostlights singing on the songs Ghostlights, Unchain The Light and on the bonus track Wake Up To The Moon.
Between March and August of the same year, he was part of the biggest Avantasia tour, entitled Ghostlights World Tour, which consisted of more than 40 concerts in Europe, North America, South America, Canada, Japan, Russia and Scandinavia.
In 2019 Michael Kiske participated in the Avantasia album Moonglow, singing on the song Requiem For A Dream.
Place Vendome 2005-2017
In 2005, Michael took part in the Place Vendome project, on Frontiers Records. Place Vendome was composed of Dennis Ward bass and production, Kosta Zafiriou drums and Uwe Reitenauer guitars from the German band Pink Cream 69, Gunther Werno keyboards from the band Vanden Plas and Kiske on vocals.
The project's debut album, Place Vendome, was a blend of melodic hard rock and AOR comparable to the sound of bands such as Foreigner or Journey and the majority of the songwriting was provided by Dennis Ward.
In 2009, the Place Vendome project released its second album entitled Streets of Fire.
A video was filmed for the song My Guardian Angel, marking Michael's visual return since 1996.
The songwriting for the second album was provided by musicians Magnus Karlsson from Primal Fear, Torsti Spoof from Leverage, Ronny Milianowicz from Saint Deamon and Robert Sall from Work Of Art.
In 2013, Frontiers Records released Place Vendome's third album entitled Thunder in the Distance.
A video was filmed for the song Talk To Me.
The songwriting for this release was provided by musicians Alessandro Del Vecchio from Hardline, Timo Tolkki ex-Stratovarius, Brett Jones, Tommy Denander from Radioactive, Magnus Karlsson from Primal Fear, Sören Kronqvist from Sunstorm, Roberto Tiranti and Andrea Cantarelli from Labyrinth.
In 2017, the Place Vendome project released its fourth album entitled Close to the Sun.
The album featured songs written by Magnus Karlsson, Alessandro Del Vecchio, Jani Liimatainen, Olaf Thorsen, Fabio Lione, Simone Mularoni, Aldo Lonobile and Mike Palace.
In addition, it was be the first Place Vendome album to feature guest guitar solos by Gus G, Kai Hansen, Gamma Ray, Mandy Meyer, Alfred Koffler, Michael Klein, Magnus Karlsson and Simone Mularoni.
In late 2009, Michael collaborated with female vocalist Amanda Somerville in a duet project, put together by Frontiers Records.
The project was named Kiske/Somerville and it marked the contribution of musicians Mat Sinner, Magnus Karlsson, Sander Gommans, Martin Schmidt and Jimmy Kresic.
The self-titled debut album was released on September 24 2010.
Two videos were filmed for the songs Silence and If I Had A Wish, enabling most of the participants to actually meet in person.
The second Kiske/Somerville album entitled City Of Heroes was released on April 17, 2015.
Mat Sinner, Magnus Karlsson and Veronika Lukesova handled the instrumentation, while Jacob Hansen and Sinner were in charge of the production.
Two music videos were filmed for the songs City Of Heroes and Walk On Water.
On November 10th 2009, Michael formed the band Unisonic together with Dennis Ward, Kosta Zafiriou and Mandy Meyer.
Unisonic began a short tour in June 2010, playing some warm-up shows in Germany and performing at Sweden Rock Festival and Masters of Rock Festival as well. This small tour marked Kiske's return to the live stages after 17 years of absence.
In March 2011, Kai Hansen joined the band, and on October 15 the new line-up performed its first show at Loud Park Festival in Japan. In 2012 Michael Kiske played with Unisonic at Rockwave Festival in Greece.
The band released the EP Ignition, together with their first video for the song Unisonic in January 2012, through EarMusic.The release of their self titled debut album followed on March 30 2012.
The debut album entered several international music charts, scoring the highest points on the Finnish albums chart, Japanese Albums Chart, German Albums Chart and Swedish albums chart.
Unisonic was live at RockFest Barcelona in 2016
Unisonic embarked on their first world tour in May 2012 performing in South America and in various European music festivals, such as Masters of Rock, Hellfest, Rock Hard Festival and Gods Of Metal among others.
The second half of the tour included concerts in Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Russia, Spain and Germany.
The band's second EP, For the Kingdom, came out in May 2014, the video for the song Exceptional followed in July, while their second album, Light Of Dawn, was released on August 1, 2014.
Light Of Dawn entered several international music charts, scoring the highest entries on the Finnish, German, Swiss, Czech and Japanese Albums Chart.
The band embarked on a summer festival tour in July 2014, performing at Masters Of Rock, Leyendas Del Rock, Moscow Metal Meeting, Bang Your Head, Skogsrojet and Rock Pod Kamenom. A Japanese and European tour together with Edguy followed, while the band's final show was at the Knock Out Festival in December 2014.
On August 5, 2016, Unisonic performed their first show at Wacken Open Air Festival, which was recorded and released under the title Live in Wacken on July 21, 2017.
Collaborations and guest appearances:
In 1995, Michael participated as a guest on Gamma Ray's Land Of The Free album, singing lead vocals on the song Time To Break Free and additional vocals on the title track.
In 2002, Michael sang the song Key To The Universe, which was featured on Timo Tolkki's album Hymn To Life.
In 2003, Kiske took part in the metal opera Days Of Rising Doom by Aina, in the role of the Narrator, singing on the songs Revelations, Silver Maiden, Serendipity and Restoration.
In the same year he also sang the duet Heroes with Jorn Lande on Masterplan's album Masterplan.
In 2004, Michael sang on the duet The Encounter, together with the female vocalist of the band Thalion on their album Another Sun.
During 2005, Michael was a guest on the heavy metal album Execution of the band Tribuzy, singing the duet Absolution.
Following this participation Michael also sang as a guest on the song Judas At The Opera, of Edguy's Superheroes EP.
In 2007, Michael sang the duet Breathe In Water, together with the female vocalist of the band Indigo Dying on their self-titled debut album.
During 2008, Timo Tolkki left Stratovarius and formed the band Revolution Renaissance. The band's debut album New Era, was recorded by session musicians and Michael on the role of the main singer, performing vocals for the tracks I Did It My Way, Ange, Keep The Flame Alive, Last Night On Earth and Revolution Renaissance.
In 2009, Michael was a guest on Trick or Treat's album Tin Soldiers, singing all vocals on the song Hello Moon and additional lead vocals on the duet Tears Against Your Smile.
In 2010 Michael recorded guest vocals for the song All You Need To Know, on Gamma Ray's To The Metal album.
In 2011, Michael appeared as a special guest in Gamma Ray's concert in Pratteln, Switzerland.
The full show was released on CD and DVD under the name Skeletons & Majesties Live in 2012.
Michael singss on the songs Time To Break Free, A While in Dreamland and Future World. In 2013, Michael took part in Timo Tolkki's metal opera project Avalon.
Michael sang the self-titled track on thes debut album The Land Of New Hope.
Michael Kiske live with Rock Meets Classic in 2015