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Music / Demons & Wizards

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Demons & Wizards was a Heavy Metal supergroup formed in 1997 by Hansi Kürsch of Blind Guardian and Jon Schaffer of Iced Earth, who originally became friends a few years earlier when their bands toured together. The project's name supposedly came about when "Demons and Angels" was suggested by Schaffer's wife as a description of the contrast between Schaffer's demon-like thrashy guitar riffs and Kürsch's angel-like singingnote . Kürsch corrected her and said it would be more accurate to describe him as a wizard, also referencing the 1972 Uriah Heep album of the same name.

In general, the instrumentals were written by Schaffer while Kürsch wrote the lyrics and vocal melodies, though some of the guitar solos were done by producer and collaborator Jim Morris. Their music has been described as a dark and aggressive form of epic Power Metal with occasional elements of Progressive Metal and folk music worked in.

After Jon Schaffer's arrest following his involvement in the 2021 Capitol Riots, Hansi Kürsch immediately left the project and announced that he would never work with Schaffer again, effectively dissolving the band.

Not to be confused with the Uriah Heep album of the same name (although, as mentioned above, Schaffer and Kursch have said that the album partially inspired their name).


  • 1999 - Demons & Wizards
  • 2005 - Touched by the Crimson King
  • 2020 - III

This band has examples of:

  • Ancient Astronauts: "Spatial Architects" concerns this subject, and alludes to humankind's gods and angels being distorted reflections of some kind of eldritch spacefaring precursors.
  • Balancing Death's Books: "Fiddler on the Green" provides a variant on this trope: The song turns out to be about the Grim Reaper taking a young boy "too early" and, feeling remorseful for his error, 'balances it out' by taking a young girl so the boy can gain a companion when he goes to the afterlife.
  • BSoD Song: "Winter of Souls" is about Mordred on the eve of the final battle with his father King Arthur. He realizes that he's in the wrong and has used his legitimate grievances against Arthur as an excuse for his cruel ambitions, but it's too late to turn back and the fates of him and Arthur are sealed.
  • Everything Sounds Sexier in French: Or, rather, everything sounds more ominous whispered in German, as Hansi occasionally does for dramatic texture on a few tracks.
  • God Is Evil: The trilogy that ends the first album, seemingly written from the point of view of a fallen angel who feels betrayed and mistreated by the Christian God.
  • Heavy Mithril: As one would expect, this is a consistent theme throughout many of the band's songs. Their second album in paraticular is entirely dedicated to Stephen King's The Dark Tower. However, Hansi has stated that many of songs have more than one meaning and are more related allegorically, such as the songs about Captain Ahab reflecting Roland's quest. Additionally, the bonus track "Lunar Lament" is about a passage from The Silmarillionnote .
  • Metal Scream: Hansi, known for his awe-inspiring Type 4 screams, does this often. One of the most epic examples is near the end of "Fiddler on the Green".
  • Ominous Latin Chanting: "Rites of Passage", "Heaven Denies," "Chant", and "Crimson King" all employ this for dramatic effect.
  • Perspective Flip: "Winter of Souls", which is from Mordred's POV; "Crimson King," which is from the Crimson King's POV; "Terror Train" from Blaine the Mono's POV; and "The Whistler" from the Pied Piper's POV. Though, despite the title, "Crimson King" focuses more on Flagg.
  • Power Ballad: "Wicked Witch" and "Fiddler on the Green" are their two most well-known examples.
  • Shout-Out: They have songs about:
  • Stock Quotes: The song "Crimson King" contains the line, "I am Legion".
  • A Storm Is Coming: "Winter of Souls" is themed around this motif, and starts with the narrator saying he's "facing the storm".
  • These Hands Have Killed: "Blood On My Hands", about the narrator being haunted by the spirits of those he has killed.