Helloween was founded in the early ’80s by members of the Hamburg bands, Iron Fist and Powerfool. The original line-up consisting of Kai Hansen (guitars/vocals), Michael Weikath (guitars), Markus Grosskopf (bass), and Ingo Schwichtenberg (drums). At the age of eighteen, Kiske was asked to join the band Helloween, which was fronted by singer/guitarist Kai Hansen. Hansen had some difficulties being both the lead guitarist and lead vocalist, and it was decided that a new vocalist would be needed. Kiske rejected Helloween’s first offer, 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.
After the completion of the band’s 1988 headlining tour, the group’s first live recording LIVE IN THE U.K. was released, while Kai Hansen left the band and was replaced by guitarist Roland Grapow. Legal difficulties with their record company Noise put Helloween on ice for many months and proved a major obstacle at the beginning of the ’90s.
Helloween had left the label Noise Records and turned to EMI. Their fourth studio album PINK BUBBLES GO APE was their first album released on EMI Records in 1991. The album contains two singles, which are “Kids of the Century” and “Number One”. “Kids of the Century” written by Michael Kiske reached #56 in the United Kingdom. After the album was released, a lawsuit stopped Helloween from touring for a year. In the spring of 1992 an agreement was done, and they could finally play on a short European Tour starting in Hamburg 30 April 1992, and in the autumn they also played some shows in Japan.
The fifth studio album CHAMELEON, mirrored an exceptional musical quality, definately their most musically adventurous release, but also their least commercially successful. After the experimental, Michael Kiske left towards the end of 1993 to devote himself to a solo carrer.
In November 2016, it was announced that former members Kai Hansen and Michael Kiske were re-joining the band for a world tour titled the Pumpkins United World Tour, that would start on October 2017 and conclude the following year. On August 2018, the band announced that, at the request of their label Nuclear Blast, the Pumpkins United line-up would perdure after 2018, and that a live CD and DVD for the Pumpkins United World Tour would be released in 2019, followed by a new studio album to be recorded later that year for a planned 2020 release. On October 2019, a live recording on DVD/Blu-ray titled UNITED ALIVE and the live album UNITED ALIVE IN MADRID were released. The first comprises recordings of the band’s performances in Madrid WiZink Centre (2017), at Wacken Open Air (2018) and in São Paulo (2017) and the second is a recording of the full performance in Madrid, with songs recorded in shows in Prague, São Paulo, Wacken Open Air festival, and Santiago de Chile acting as bonus tracks.
In March 2021, it was announced that the band’s first album with the Pumpkins United line-up would be titled HELLOWEEN, and it was released on 18 June 2021. The album topped German and Spanish charts and also reached number one at the physical charts in Sweden, Finland and the rock charts in the United Kingdom.
HELLOWEEN invited their friends from HAMMERFALL to join them on their European tour in order to create a tremendous metal-package together. The UNITED FORCES TOUR 2022 called alliance is not only the full HELLOWEEN experience, on top the fans will enjoy fine Swedish steel out of the HAMMERFALL forge. Both bands will have brand-new albums in their luggage and the fans will be able to listen to the new songs live for the very first time on the UNITED FORCES TOUR 2022.