Chameleon (Helloween album)

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Studio album by
Released31 May 1993
Recorded1992 at Chateau du Pape, Hamburg, Germany, mixed at Scream Studios, Los Angeles, United States
112:35 (with bonus tracks)
Helloween chronology
Pink Bubbles Go Ape
Master of the Rings
Singles from Chamelon
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic2/5 stars [1]

Chameleon is the fifth studio album by German power metal band Helloween, released in 1993.[2] It is their most musically adventurous release, but also their least commercially successful, and last studio album to feature singer Michael Kiske and original drummer Ingo Schwichtenberg.


Tensions within the band and its management resulted in an album that is highly eclectic in terms of its musical aesthetics, to the point that it has been rejected by the band's core audience as not being a Helloween album at all. This position is based on the notion that Helloween (arguably) created but, more importantly, had perfected the power metal sound.[citation needed]

Having failed to live up to the standard of Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part I and Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part II after Pink Bubbles Go Ape in commercial (and somewhat artistic) terms, Chameleon abandoned almost all elements of the power metal sound that the band had been instrumental in creating, and can be seen as an attempt to garner success in wider musical avenues like synthesizers, horns, acoustic guitars, the children's chorus of the Orchester Johann Sebastian Bach, violin, church organ, country music, grunge and swing, with participation of musicians like Stefan Pintev and Axel Bergstedt. The atmosphere of the album is closer to progressive rock, with some pop elements. While some of these elements may have always been a part of Helloween's sound, they were not in the forefront of their sound and were not the elements most celebrated by the bands core heavy metal audience. The song "Giants" has more power metal elements than any other song on the album. Chameleon was the only time these diverse influences would make it to the front of the band's sound. In terms of production, this is arguably the most accomplished album of the Michael Kiske era, well produced with an epic sound full of different stylistic influences. The name "Chameleon" is derived from the style change from song to song (as a chameleon changes color).

The album contains four singles: "Windmill", "When the Sinner", "Step Out of Hell", and "I Don't Wanna Cry No More".

The album was a failure both critically and commercially, and vocalist Michael Kiske and drummer Ingo Schwichtenberg were fired after the subsequent promotional tour. The band then recruited vocalist Andi Deris from Pink Cream 69 along with drummer Uli Kusch and continued in a direction more akin to their earlier works.

Track listing[edit]

1."First Time"Michael Weikath5:29
2."When the Sinner"Michael Kiske6:54
3."I Don't Wanna Cry No More"Roland Grapow5:11
4."Crazy Cat"Grapow3:29
7."Revolution Now"Weikath8:04
8."In the Night"Kiske5:36
10."Step Out of Hell"Grapow4:21
11."I Believe"Kiske9:12
Expanded edition bonus tracks
1."I Don't Care, You Don't Care"Weikath4:01
2."Oriental Journey"Grapow5:43
3."Cut in the Middle"Markus Grosskopf3:57
5."Get Me out of Here"Weikath2:50
6."Red Socks and the Smell of Trees"Helloween10:48
7."Ain't Got Nothing Better"Grosskopf4:41
8."Windmill (Demo Version)"Weikath5:28




It is an interesting footmark, that three of the children of the children's choir are Aminata, Jazz and Sophie from Black Buddafly, who had been 12 and 13 years old, when they sang for Chameleon.


Chart (1993) Peak
Swiss Albums Chart[3] 30
German Albums Chart[4] 35
Swedish Albums Chart[5] 35

Recording information[edit]

  • Recorded in 1992 at Chateau De Paup in Hamburg, Germany
  • Mixed in 1992 at Scream Studios in Los Angeles, United States
  • Mastered at Precision Mastering, Hollywood, United States
  • Produced by Helloween and Tommy Hansen, assisted by Michael Tibes
  • Mixed by Michael Wagener at Double Trouble Productions Inc., assisted by Craig Boubet
  • Mastered by Stephen Marcussen
  • Logo by Michael Weikath and Sleeve design by Michael Kiske
  • All songs are published by Zomba Music Publishers (LTD) S.F. USA


  1. ^ Chameleon at AllMusic. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  2. ^ "Chameleon". Encyclopaedia Metallum. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  3. ^ "Helloween - Chamaleon (Swiss Charts)". Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  4. ^ "Helloween - Chamaleon (German Charts)". Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  5. ^ "Helloween - Chamaleon (Swedish Charts)". Retrieved 19 July 2019.