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Gamma Ray

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Hamburg, Germany (1989 – present)

Founded in 1989 by Kai Hansen in Hamburg, Germany after leaving Helloween, Gamma Ray borrowed straight from the Helloween classics, and continued to pioneer Hansen’s style of power metal.

After four years with Helloween, Kai Hansen decided to leave the band at the height of their career. He then went on to do some studio work with Blind Guardian.

Kai and his friend Ralf Scheepers from Tyran’ Pace decided to start a project. They recruited bassist Uwe Wessel and drummer Mathias Burchard. The resulting sound was very close to Helloween’s power metal style.

The first album Heading For Tomorrow was released in 1990. Two lineup changes resulted in Uli Kusch (who would later join Helloween) becoming the bands second drummer and Dirk Schlachter becoming a new guitarist. The new lineup released the Heaven Can Wait EP.

In 1991 the band released Sigh No More, which resulted in a 50 date world tour.

In 1993 Uli Kusch left the band and was replaced with Thomas Nack and Jan Rubach who replaced Uwe Wessel as the new bassist. The resulting cd was Insanity and Genius. Later that year, along with Rage, Helicon and Conception the band played on a tour called “Melodic Metal Strikes Back”. This resulted in a double CD release and video called Power of Metal. They also released Lust For Live which did not feature the other bands.

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