Their latest album is slated to be released on August 25th, 2008.
DragonForce was formed in 1999 from the remnants of the band Demoniac under the name of DragonHeart, but they changed their name to DragonForce before releasing any commercial albums due to possible commercial issues with Brazilian band Dragonheart. Their career began with the publishing of their early songs on the first incarnation of MP3.com, claiming the top of the site's heavy metal charts. The hit song "Valley of the Damned" reached over 500,000 downloads in the first few months. Two of the original members, Steve Williams and Steve Scott, left the band to form the power metal outfit Power Quest. Sam Totman also started a side project called Shadow Warriors featuring himself and ZP Theart. Sam has confirmed many times that Herman Li was not involved with Shadow Warriors.
The band's first successful song was "Starfire" off of their debut album, Valley of the Damned. It was most noted because it starts off with a light piano intro, which is atypical among DragonForce songs. DragonForce have released three albums and toured extensively while supporting Helloween, W.A.S.P. and Iron Maiden. Their 2005 tour in support of the Sonic Firestorm album included support from Angra and Mendeed during their passage through the UK. On October 28, 2005 bassist Adrian Lambert announced his departure from the band in order to focus more time on raising his young son (Lambert later revealed in an interview that he had left due to musical differences with Herman Li and Sam Totman). Less than a month after Lambert's departure, on November 23, 2005, DragonForce were signed to Roadrunner Records in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Australia and New Zealand, who released their most recent effort, Inhuman Rampage on January 9, 2006. Lambert was replaced in 2006 by Frédéric Leclercq, who was made an official member after a performance on tour.
A master track of the song "Through the Fire and Flames" is featured in the video game Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock and is generally considered to be the most challenging track in the Guitar Hero series. The developers used the song to demonstrate the game at E3. After Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock was released, the band's music sales reportedly increased dramatically.
A new DragonForce album has been announced to be released on August 25th, 2008. This will be followed by an extensive UK tour through October, with support coming from Finnish folk metal act Turisas.
DragonForce's musical style includes:
- Emphasis on fast, twin-guitar harmonies in speed metal styles
- Generally optimistic and uplifting chorus sections
- Lyrics of a fantastical or epic nature, with a hopeful and optimistic attitude, often with recurring themes and lyrical phrases in multiple songs
- Use of multi-tracked backing vocals
- Use of keyboards throughout songs
- Video game-influenced melodies and noises
Although the band takes their musicianship seriously, they do not embody the themes in their music. In an interview with Metal Hammer, guitarist Herman Li has stated "Oh no, it's completely serious, we have fun doing it...". DragonForce's influences are drawn from various kinds of metal such as melodic styles of rock, and in particular video games such as "Wonder Boy in Monster World", and the Final Fantasy series, with lyrics comparable to themes present in fantasy games.
The band have frequently referred to their style not just as power metal, but as extreme power metal. Herman Li commented on descriptions of the band's style in an interview with Guitar World: "'Nintendo metal,' 'extreme power metal', 'Bon Jovi on Speed,' 'Journey Meets Slayer,' ...people are always coming up with weird labels for us." 
- "Herman Li" - Lead and rhythm guitars, backing vocals
- "Sam Totman" - Lead and rhythm guitars, backing vocals
- "ZP Theart" - Lead vocals
- "Vadim Pruzhanov" - Keyboards, backing vocals (2001-present)
- "Dave Mackintosh" - Drums, percussion, backing vocals (2004-present)
- "Frédéric Leclercq" - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2006-present)
- "Adrian Lambert" - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2004-2005)
- "Didier Almouzni" - Drums, backing vocals (1999-2003)
- "Diccon Harper" - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2001-2003)
- "Steve Scott" - Bass guitar, backing vocals (1999-2000)
- "Steve Williams" - Keyboards, backing vocals (1999-2000)
- February 20th 2003: Valley of the Damned
- May 2004: Sonic Firestorm
- January 9th 2006: Inhuman Rampage
- August 25th 2008: Ultra Beatdown
- 2000: Valley of the Damned (as DragonHeart)
|Year||Title||Chart peak positions||Album|
|2005||"Fury of the Storm"||—||—||—||—||—||Sonic Firestorm|
|2006||"Through the Fire and Flames"||86||56||34||49||41||Inhuman Rampage|
|"Operation Ground and Pound"||—||—||—||—||—|
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.
- "Through the Fire and Flames", from Inhuman Rampage
- "Operation Ground and Pound", from Inhuman Rampage
- ↑ http://www.dragonforce.com/discography.php
- ↑ Metal Hammer, November 2006, pg 40 "DragonForce interview"
- ↑ Template:Cite web
- ↑ Template:Cite web
- ↑ Metal Hammer, November 2006, pg 35 "DragonForce interview"
- ↑ Metal-Temple.com Herman Li (Interview)
- ↑ Guitar World, Holiday 2006, pg 72 "Hotter Then Hell"