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Dark Passion Play - Nightwish

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Genre: Indie Rock & Punk - Goth / Artist: Nightwish / Audio CD released 2007-10-01 at Nuclear Blast

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    • More +
      22.01.2011 01:02
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      A new era to Nightwish.

      ~Nightwish~
      Anette Olzon - Vocals (joined in 2007.)
      Tuomas Holopainen - Keyboards & song-writing.
      Emppu Vuorinen - Guitars
      Jukka Nevalainen - Drums (joined in 1997.)
      Marco Hietala - Bass & vocals (joined in 2002.)

      Nightwish are quite a well know Finish metal band that inspired symphonic metal using strong classical elements of music along with the drums and guitar riffs. The band was founded in 1996 by Tuomas Holopainen along with Emppu Vuorinen and Tarja Turunen. In fifteen years they've released six studio albums, two EPs, three live albums, six compilations, thirteen music videos and nineteen singles. They've achieved four number one albums and ten number one singles in their native country.

      Their mixture of classical and metal music became highly appealing and was much loved by their country along with some other small areas of the globe. There's been three line-up changes, the most recent was in 2005 where Tarja was asked to leave by a letter which was published on the website and it still there today.

      Tarja's removal from the band caused a variety of concerns. Every Nigthwish fan found Tarja's operatic vocal style unique and inspiring. They could hear the passion when she sings. I think she has the ability to sound both powerful and peaceful in her vocals.


      ~Dark Passion Play~
      Nightwish's sixth album, Dark Passion Play was released in Finland on September 26th 2007 in Finland, September 28th for the rest of Europe and October 2nd 2007 in the United States. Annette Olzon was announced as a replacement some months earlier and the leader of the band, Tuomas knew that she would always get compared to Tarja and some people would still think Nightwish is dead without her, but he said he had faith that Anette could do well.

      I like the peaceful tone in Anette's voice. Vocally I prefer Tarja, but Anette also has a quirky voice. Anette heavily reminds me of Björk. Her live performances with the band haven't always been strong compared to the studio recordings and she continues to get a lot of extreme stick which has gone as far as death threats. Recently I've heard some major improvements in Anette's vocal ability on live performances and her constant improvements make me look forward to the next album.

      Marco also contributes much more vocally. He takes the lead vocals on Master Passion Greed and The Islander, and also sings the chorus for 7 Days To The Wolves and Bye Bye Beautiful. The B-sides of the singles also provide Dark Passion Play demos where Marco is responsible for all the vocals. I love the powerful and eccentric tone in his voice and it's very distinctive.

      There are also instrumental versions of each songs available on the deluxe versions. So they've been very generous and I think it really benefits the people who aren't too keen on Anette's voice because the instrumentals are really powerful pieces and really stand out on their own. They also the band collaborated with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and Metro Voices Choir.

      The album is also the most expensive album produced in Finland costing 500,000Euro (£424481.12) so the expectations were quite high. So I can see there has been a lot of effort being placed into this album. The lyrics are very personal on some tracks such as Poet And The Pendulum, Bye Bye Beautiful and Master Passion Greed. Some of the lyrics were also inspired by novels by Stephen King and works from Edgar Allan Poe and Walt Whitman.

      The album opens with a very personal track named Poet And The Pendulum. A 14 minute long song that revolves around Tuomas. It's quite a powerful opener and it's currently one of their longest songs to date. It has a huge mixture of feelings, about his personal conflicts and his life as a writer and composer. It's one of his favourite tracks because he really put his heart and soul into this track. He once stated that this album saved his life. Not quite sure how, but I'm guessing it's because he was in love with Tarja and he was starting to move on.

      "The morning dawned, upon his altar,
      Remains of the dark passion play,
      Performed by his friends without shame,
      Spitting on his grave as they came."
      - From Poet And The Pendulum

      Bye Bye Beautiful is much more fast paced and aggressive. It's about Tuomas' feelings about Tarja and how he feels that Tarja gave up her passion for the music. A lot of people feel it's an unreasonable attack on Tarja. The chorus sung by Marco heavily refers to the open letter.

      "Did you ever hear what I told you?
      Did you ever read what I wrote you?
      Did you ever listen to what we played?"
      - Part of the chorus.

      The third track, Amaranth is a catchy strong tune with an uplifting tune that help makes the the fourth track, Cadence Of Her Last breath a dark and dramatic surprise. I particularly like the line, "and all the poetry in the world finally makes sense to me."

      The most brutal track of the album is Master Passion Greed where Marco does the majority of the vocals. The guitars are blazing, deep and hard hitting and the drums are vividly banged. Marco's loud vocals capture the punch in the song. It's a stand out track for me, but my only problem with the song that it lacks a certain identity in some of the verses. It doesn't make me think of Nightwish, but makes me think of Tarot, a band that Marco has been in way before Nightwish's formation.

      Eva and Sahara are also both beautiful songs for different reasons. Eva paints a tale about a girl called Eva who runs away from a bad life and Sahara starts off as very sweet then slowly shows the dark and powerful side of Anette's vocals. I've had Sahara on repeat recently.

      The eight track is one of my favourites from the album, Whoever Brings The Night. I love the energy packed in the song and I think Marco and Emppu do a fantastic job with the blazing bass and growling guitars here. I think the lyrics here are quite imaginative and they make me think of a villain's theme.

      For the Heart I Once Had is a rather pleasant rock song with some elements of pop. I don't think it stands out as much as the rest of the tracks but I still enjoyed it and I liked the soft high-pitched vocals Anette shows on here because I think she sounds really cute on this track.

      Their most recent single and the last from the album is the Islander. Stripped from all the grand fancy choirs and orchestras and just a simple and peaceful Celtic style track with Marco sounding incredibly great on the track with Anette's backing vocals fitting nicely.

      Last Of The Wilds is a very nice fast paced instrumental track that gives great impact to the last two tracks 7 Days To The Wolves and Meadows Of Heaven. Both tracks are quite outstanding, though I think 7 Days To The Wolves would have given a much more powerful ending and would have flowed better if it was the last track.

      The album closes on the sweet ballad called Meadows Of Heaven. That puts the choirs into full use. Anette sounds very mature and it helps hide the fact the lyrics are bit cheesy and sloppy at times, but the cheese in the lyrics also help the song paint a theme about a childhood you wish you could go back to. The guitars kicked in the middle of the song may seem a bit random but I think it gives fantastic vibes to the song.

      I think it's a very beautiful album. Very different compared to previous releases by the band but I still think it's a solid album. Some of the lyrics don't have much vivid imagination in albums such as some of their previous work, but the mixture of atmospheres and solid production help make up for it. It may not have the operatic style of Tarja that most people used to know and love, but the classical and metal mixtures are still there and I still think Nightwish are great. Oceanborn is technically the best album in my opinion, but my favourite is Dark Passion Play.

      Some people still want Tarja to come back to Nightwish. While I miss Tarja in Nightwish, I think her solo career is going just fine and if she is to return to Nightwish I think now would be far too soon because I think they should let Anette keep developing as the strong front woman she has the potential to be. And she's improving a lot too.


      ~Track list, quotes from the lyrics and my personal rate for each song~
      1) Poet And The Pendulum - "One last perfect verse. " 5/5
      2) Bye Bye Beautiful - " It's not the tree that forsakes the flower." 4/5
      3) Amaranth - "Caress the one, the Never-Fading rain in your heart- the tears of snow-white sorrow." 5/5
      4) Cadence Of Her Last Breath - "Save one death for me!" 5/5
      5) Master Passion Greed - "Seek her! Seduce her! Tame her! Blame her! Have her! Kill her!" 5/5
      6)Eva - "In this cruel children's game there's no friend to call her name." 5/5
      7)Sahara - "1001 nights unseen the philosopher and the queen." 5/5
      8)Whoever Brings The Night - "We seduce the dark with pain." 5/5
      9)For The Heart I Once Had - "The music flows because it longs for the heart I once had." 5/5
      10) The Islander - "This is the long forgotten light at the end of the world." 5/5
      11) Last Of The Wilds - (Instrumental) 5/5
      12) 7 Days To The Wolves - "Taking us home where dust once was a man." 5/5
      13) Meadows Of Heaven - "Childhood games, woods and lakes, streams of silver, toys of olden days." 5/5

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      • More +
        14.07.2009 00:42
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        Dark Passion Play is an album any Nightwish fan, or indeed music enthusiast should give a go.

        Nightwish.

        Now there's a band name that can spark a heated debate between fans and listeners alike. While the band may have been around for a long time, it can be claimed that they did not reach full mainstream status until the release of 2005's 'Once', an album that was beautifully crafted and turned so many first time listeners into avid fans. While Nightwish are certainly more than capable on their instruments, weaving some of the most intricate songs and styles I have ever listened to, it is without doubt that one of the biggest draws was the simply awe-inspiring operatic vocals of Tarja Turunen.

        I will always remember the first time I ever heard her voice when a friend lent me his copy of Century Child (quite a while ago now, come to think of it) and I was blown away. In particular it was her haunting rendition of 'The Phantom of the Opera' that made think: 'wow, here is a band that are willing to take risks and experiment'

        This is what brings me into this review of Dark Passion Play. In October 2005, Tarja was dismissed via open letter by the rest of the band. It was a shock to all Nightwish fans. How could anyone replace their Tarja, her voice was one in a million! After lenghty auditions, it was finally announced that Annette Olzen would be the replacement. Of course this sparks a huge 'pop/rock vs operatic singer' debate which I will not go into.

        With all this publicity, there was large anticipation surrounding the album, with many 'true' fans already touting that it could not possibly live up to the other albums, due to the vocalist change. I, however, remained open to everything. Nightwish, after all, was not just Tarja. Yes, she may have sang the songs, but without the breathless composition by Tuomas Holopainen, there would be no songs to sing. Plus, all the instrumentalists were still here. I would wait for it to come out, and judge it then.

        And then, it came out.

        What can I say? At first, I was not sure. It was a different sounding Nightwish yes, but I could tell the craftmanship was there. This was no half assed album; it had been carefully nutured with compassion and dedication. I went back and listened to it again. It is now one of my more preffered albums of the last two years.

        As I mentioned before, Nightwish have always been one for experimentation. In 'Once,' we saw the band explore Native American music through songs such as 'Creek Mary's Blood' which featured notable Native American Muscian, John Two-Hawks, as well as playing around with a full orchestral set up (Ghost Love Score.)

        In Dark Passion Play we have experimentation in another traditional style of music (on a couple of songs) in the form of Irish and Finnish folklore and roots, with the sombre tones of 'The Islander' and the extraordinary instrumental of 'Last of the Wilds', both which feature Irish muscian, Troy Donockley using the uilleann pipes. But Nightwish would not be Nightwish without its variance in song styles. As well as these experiments in traditional elements, we also have the epic 'Poet and The Pendulum,' a 14 minute masterpiece which Tuomas described as almost a 'film score,' and simply has to be listened to for full apperciation. There are also much more harder sounding stuff in pieces such as 'Master Passion Greed' and the very personal 'Bye Bye Beautiful.'

        While I may be talking specifics here, I think I need to give a quick overview before you are lost in my endless prattle. The album is probably Nightwish's darkest to date, and that can be seen due to a bout of depression which Tuomas went through directly before and during the composition of the piece. The lyrics are often surprisngly abrupt and powerful, and then suddenly change pace and fizzle to something much more poetic and duel-layered. You only need to listen to the chorus of 'Bye Bye Beautiful' (extracts from the open letter of dismissal to Tarja) to get the point of the song.

        But what of Annette? At first I was impartial. While the vocals were admittedly much 'cleaner,' you could hear the power and skill that defined its form. Listening to the slow-paced 'Eva' shows that Annette is not messing around here; she knows what she has to live up to and is making sure she is giving her best damn performance out there. While both singers have their pro's and cons, I personally think it is unfair to judge 'whom is better' as they are very different styles - you wouldn't compare Pavarotti to Pink, would you? (Extreme example, I know)

        Personally, I have no problem with Annette covering older Nightwish songs, just as long as she can hit the notes. If she cannot, then leave the song alone. It is that simple for me.

        But now, the abum review, song by song! If you've stuck with this review so far then it's time to look at each song in some (some less) detail!

        1. THE POET AND THE PENDULUM

        As mentioned before, it is hard to describe this song. Opening with soft keyboards and shrill bell-like sounds that signal a preclude to something rather epic, our ears are privvy to the almost angel-like mourning of a child operatic voice. Annette's voice kicks in as the the instruments hit a steady rhythm. Our first hearing of her voice and isn't it good! A powerful chorus with even stronger lyrics:

        'Getaway, runaway, fly away
        Lead me astray, to dreamer's hideaway
        I cannot cry 'cause the shoulder cries more
        I cannot die, I, a whore for the cold world
        Forgive me,
        I have but two faces
        One for the world,
        One for God
        Save me
        I cannot cry 'cause the shoulder cries more
        I cannot die, I, a whore for the cold world'

        The song hits some filmic effects with some sporadic imstrument bursts which climax in a frantic guitar solo blast around the 7 minute mark that lasts until Marco's screaming voice kicks you in the face at 8 minutes in. After another chorus, the tempo hits a slower beat as we reach the climax. The piano softly creeps in as Annette shows us an impressive vocal range before a soft flittering finale.

        An epic beginning that really needs to be listened to multiple times to fully appreciate: Comparable to other songs such as Ghost Love Score. 10/10

        2. BYE BYE BEAUTIFUL

        The song title should be a dead giveaway. Aimed at Tarja, and a very personal one for the old members, this song is one of the louder and 'metal' if you will of the album, although Annette's vocals do seem almost too clean on this song and do verge into pop/rock territory at times. An excellent intro followed by a powerful verse leads into a thunderous chorus sang by Marco (quoting lines from the dismissal lines, as well as other added ones) The song has rather typical high and low ends with a soft moment before the final repeated chorus and end of the song. One of the singles released from the album, it is a very 'accessible' song, but still remains a strong one. I would have liked a solo in this one though. 8/10

        3. Amaranth.

        ooo boy. The song which a lot of people judge this album on without listening to the rest. Before I go on I must warn you I'm not trying to pull you astray here - this is still a great and catchy song. The first single released from the album, Amaranth is rather straightforward in composition with an addicting chorus that is sung well. It is typical of Tuomas to craft such a simple song yet still exhibit all the signs of Nightwish. There is classic Nightwish guitars, some keyboard moments (although mainly backing) and Marco adds some backing vocals near the end as well. The video for this song does look rather unappealing though. It covers the story of a boy in a village who uncovers the supposed corpse of an angel (that comes back to life and flies away) still, this is a very catchy song, and almost Nightwish-lite, if you were. 7.5/10

        4. CADANCE OF HER LAST BREATH.

        The song starts out with the frantic panting of Annette to a few, cold keyboard pings. In kicks the guitars and hints of orchestral backing. The vocals are particularly strong on this song, Annette really puts emotion into this song (it is quite grim) The song bolsters between frantic and steady, yet keeps up a dark intensity which hasn't been seen since the opening track. 3:18 in particular is moving with all instruments fading out and leaving only the frantic panting of breath again, alluding, we can assume, to the title. There is quite a well placed solo in this song as well, and for once I almost didnt want there to be one as the song keeps its intensity through the brooding and well sang lyrics. The ending is great as well. One of the more chilling songs on the album. 8.5/10

        5. MASTER PASSION GREED

        Eh. This song has an extremley metal opening which left me very excited. Unfortunately the way the lyrics are executed just did not cut it for me. I usually only give praise to Marco's voice (which is fine on this song) but I just didn't feel it. You might, but I just cannot get into this song. It is well performed and has an interesting chorus, but at 6 minutes, it is far too long for me, and I find myself losing interest as the song reaches the halfway point, which really does not make much sense as there are some brilliant instrumental parts around the 2:40 mark. Probably one of my least favourite songs on the album, but saved by certain bits which are superb. 6/10

        6. EVA

        After the head rattling sounds of 'Master Passion Greed,' Evan is a surprising change in tempo. And a welcome one, I can say. Eva is a truly touching song that highlights the skills of Annette's voice, as well as her precision of vocal range. The song is actualy rather simple, but also sad and bittersweet. I won't post the lyrics or this review might never end! This is definitely one of my preffered songs on the album. Soft, slow, soothing, almost hypnotic. It is simply a pleasure to listen to. I cannot re-iterate enough how one listen to this should quell all worries over Annette as a proficient singer. At 4:20, it is just about the right length for this sort of song as well. Also there's a great solo in here as well. 9/10

        7. SAHARA

        Another case of a great intro and dissappointing finish. Perhaps that is a tad harsh, this is not a bad song by any means. The chorus is brilliant (I'm sensing a pattern here) but yet again the verse does not do much for me, although it is Annette singing here, while my qualm before was with Marco. The song contains themes of Egypt, and is only slightly shown through the musical style. Another slight dissapointment. But you may like it, so who knows. 6.5/10

        8. Whoever Brings The Night.

        Not much to say about this one. It's another harder sounding song with some interesting lyrics but not much else. Also, the chorus line of 'All your love is a lie' is rather cliche, even if it was written during a time of depression. Perhaps I'm being too harsh. For me, this song is rather forgettable.

        9. For The Heart I Once Had.

        WOW. Simply, WOW. I do not lie when I say the first time I listened to this I simply stared into nothing for ten minutes after it finished and had to switch the song back so I could fully appreicate the one I zoned out in! An almost seducing opening with more emotion than I will ever understand in a simple riff pulled me in instantly. The lyrics are powerful, sincere, and really do touch me. Annette's voice is slightly higher than usual and really carries the feelings the song is trying to portray. Effective backing instruments cast a final ray of perfection to a perfect song. I literally have nothing bad to say about this song, and it is easily my favourite 'slower' song, narrowly beating EVA; a truly heart-wrenching performance which continues to hit me every time I hear it. 10/10

        10. THE ISLANDER.

        This is where the Irish experimentation comes into play. I mentioned before the guest muscian they have on this song, and it really does work. Reminding me of classic ballads as 'the flying dutchman,' the song takes inspiration from finnish folklore and is sang primarily by Marco with minimal backing from Annette. It really is a great song and possibly the most unique on the album as well as, again, being rather sad. It was also released as a single and had an accompnying video which ventured into steampunk territory (showing a captain pulling his flying ship for a final voyage) The lyrics again are rather inspiring and possibly some of my favourite on the entire album. A great song that leads into an almost two-parter with what follows. 9/10

        11. LAST OF THE WILDS

        This is the instrumental song I mentioned earlier. It uses a good mix of traditional instruments as well as guitars and other such items. It is rather rollicking fun if I may use such a term and really swings the mood up as we go into the closing stages of the album. This song is often played live now, bringing in Troy Donockley to play live (you can hear him on the live from hong kong album released in 2008) A great song. 9/10

        12. 7 DAYS TO THE WOLVES.

        The final 'heavy-hitting' song is a lengthy one at 7:04, but for me it works. Slowly rising in intensity with a simple verse sang by Annette before kicking in with the explosive chorus fronted by Marco on vocals. Hard hitting, and almost minimalistic lyrics work well. 3:06 brings in a rising drum beat as the vocals fade that leads into one of the best instrumental parts (in a lyrical song) on thr album until 4:20. The song finishes on a fast paced finish which paves the way for an abrupt finale. 8/10

        13. Meadows of Heaven.

        Another long song. This really is the climax of quite a journey. Opening to a sorrowful violin backed by a steady keyboard, you can almost feel the feeling of the band members realising the album is coming to an end, the first lyrics are even 'I close my eyes.' Perhaps the simplest chorus in the entire song, simply stating 'Meadows of Heaven,' the song kicks in with soft drums from 1:50 onwards as the violins mournful tune continues to add some truly gripping song composition. With varied instrumental moments interspersed with short vocal bursts, the song hits a more weighty feeling from 4 minutes onwards as the hard vocals kick in for a few short moments before Annette softly sings 'flowers wither' and the guitar fades, leaving only the softer instruments. Stunning. 6:00 onwards to the end is, for lack of another word, epic. To the songs conclusion at 7:11 I suddenly realise the journey of this album is over, and I am left pondering the album itself.

        CONCLUSION:

        I know this has been a review of mammoth proportions, and I have probably lost you by now, but I wanted to do a HUGE review of an album I feel draws unfair critiscsm. Some people simply cannot look past the change of singer and appreciate this for what it is: One of Nightwish's best albums to date. While there are a few missed swings, the ones that hit are usually at the top of their game. Tuomas really pured his heart and soul into this one; to quote him, 'This is the album that saved my life.'

        A long, compelling, at times perplexing, and ultimately gratifying ride, DARK PASSION PLAY is a monolith of an album that explores a myriad of styles which Nightwish pull off masterfully. OVERALL RATING: 8.5/10

        ALBUM STATUS: RECOMMENDED.

        'Dark Passion Play' can be bought at most major online retailers such as Amazon and Play, usually priced between £6 and £12 depending on where you get it.

        If you liked ONCE and CENTURY CHILD, you will love this new addition to the Nightwish discography.

        BAND MEMBERS:

        Tuomas Holopainen - Keyboard, Piano, Backing vocals (on "Master Passion Greed")
        Marco Hietala - Vocals, Bass guitar, Acoustic guitar
        Erno "Emppu" Vuorinen - Electric guitar, Acoustic guitar
        Jukka Nevalainen - Drums, Percussion
        Anette Olzon - Lead vocals

        GUEST MUSCIANS:

        London Philharmonic Orchestra - Orchestra
        Guy Elliott - Lead Boy Soprano (on track 1)
        Tom Williams -- Second Boy Soprano (on track 1)
        Metro Voices - Choir
        Troy Donockley - Bodhran, Uilleann Pipes, Low and Tin Whistle (on track 10, 11)
        Nollaig Casey - Fiddle (on track 11)
        Senni Eskelinen - Electric Kantele (on track 11)
        Greg Knowles - Cymbalom

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        • More +
          31.05.2009 21:21
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          8/10

          When Nightwish released Dark Passion Play in 2007, the question was: can they really do it without Tarja Turunen? Replacing their trademark operatic vocals for the rockier style of Anette Olzen, Nightwish proved they were more than just that band with the operatic chick.

          Musically, Dark Passion Play continues where Once left off and then takes it a step further. The powerful sounds of the full orchestra fit seamlessly with the riffing guitars and on this album they really pull out all the stops by also featuring boy sopranos on the 14 minute epic film score-esque 'The Poet and the Pendulum' and even a gospel choir adding a real spiritual feel to album closer 'Meadows of Heaven'. 'Bye Bye Beautiful' and 'Amaranth' are both catchy rock anthems which will get stuck in your head and how anyone manages not to break out into a dance during 'Last of the Wilds' I doubt I'll ever know!

          The problem with this album is that whilst it starts off fantastically, we soon find ourselves reaching tracks that feel like little more than just filler. Sixth track 'Eva', the first single from the album, continually feels like its about to become more powerful, yet never does and cushy ballad For The Heart I Once Had makes you wonder if Nightwish are about to go for another Eurovision bid. With the album B-side being the far more fitting and interesting Escapist, quite why both these tracks made the final cut remains a mystery.

          And whilst tracks like the hauntingly atmospheric 'The Islander' and edgy 'Whoever Brings The Night' are both good tracks, one wonders whether they really fit with the tone of the rest of the album.

          Vocally, I feel Anette Olzen fits well within the tone of this album, although very different to her predecessor, she still conveys great emotion and power in her delivery on the record. Cleverly, Nightwish have accounted for those who don't share the same fondness for Anette's vocals by also including the entire album as an instrumental on a second disc. Even for those who do enjoy the full versions, this is still worth a listen as it provides the opportunity to fully appreciate the orchestral work which may go unnoticed when listening to the full versions.

          When this album is at its best, it is a truly epic work, but it is let down by the aforementioned weaker tracks. It could have been a truly spectacular piece of work yet disappointingly, it never quite reached its full potential.

          For fans of their power metal style work who felt that Oceanborn is Nightwish's best work, this isn't going to change that, but for a music fan that is looking for a new and exciting musical journey, this could just be the album you're looking for!

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            29.05.2009 07:37
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            A mediocre album that leaves much to be desired.

            Nightwish were silent for three years. Plenty of time one would think, to write a killer of an album. Unfortunately Dark Passion Play just isn't. It lets down frequently and shows off neither the songwriting skills of Tuomas Holopainen or the playing talent of the rest of the band.

            The change in vocalist from the classically trained Tarja Turnunen to Annette Olzon has had an impact not only on the quality but the style of the music as well. Rather than the mix of heavy metal and opera that Nightwish usually do so flawlessly we are left with something of much lower quality.
            Dark Passion Play is a pop- rock album with a little bit of metal on the side.

            The songs are catchy but lack the power and impact of previous work. Amaranth may be easy to sing along to but it is bland. It is a pop song, pure and simple, that seems to be directed more at chart success than anything else.

            Some songs that are better than this(although not in the class of anything from 'Once'.) The Islander, 7 Days to the wolf, Bye bye beautiful and Master passion greed all show flashes of Nightwish's previous brilliance but are still geared towards a more commercial audience.

            Nightwish have always been at the forefront of their genre but Dark Passion Play is a front runner in no sense. Sadly, Nightwish have failed to make another astounding album and the vocalist must be partly to blame. She simply does not have a strong enough voice to carry the songs. It is pleasant enough but there is nothing special or unique about it. Olzon is an average singer which just doesn't cut it.

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              16.02.2009 19:28
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              A failure to my ears!

              Nightwish more or less perfected the female fronted Symphonic metal sound throughout the late 90s and beginning of this millenium culminating in the commercialy uber-succesful album Once in 2004 which reached no.1 in the album charts in the majority of Europe (somehow only got to no.102 in the UK..), from that moment on it was bound to take something awesome to beat what they had done. Whilst a lot of praise has to go to the quality of the musicians, a lot of the band's sound came from the enormous range of vocalist Tarja Turunen.

              Dark Passion Play was the first album without her, there had been a 3 year break and everyone was wondering how Swedish vocalist Anette Oldon would fair. By this time Nightwish had already started to become incredibly predictable and commercially everywhere that they were beginning to get on my nerves.

              This album was the chance to redeem themselves by creating something new with the new line-up, it seemed to me though that the album was a poor version of some of their older work with little new forcing it's way into the fray. I've basically given up on the band due to this album, Once was commercial and predictable but still very good, this has the same heavy songs to ballad ratios and there are no unexpected twists yet it's lacking something and simply isn't as good as Once. Dark Passion Play is for me, not only commercial but poor too!

              Disc: 1
              1. Poet And The Pendulum
              2. Bye Bye Beautiful
              3. Amaranth
              4. Cadence Of Her Last Breath
              5. Master Passion Greed
              6. Eva
              7. Sahara
              8. Whoever Brings The Night
              9. For The Heart I Once Had
              10. Islander
              11. Last Of The Wilds
              12. 7 Days To The Wolves
              13. Meadows Of Heaven
              Disc: 2
              1. Poet And The Pendulum
              2. Bye Bye Beautiful
              3. Amaranth
              4. Cadence Of Her Last Breath
              5. Master Passion Greed
              6. Eva
              7. Sahara
              8. Whoever Brings The Night
              9. For The Heart I Once Had
              10. Islander
              11. Last Of The Wilds
              12. 7 Days To The Wolves
              13. Meadows Of Heaven

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          • Product Details

            Disc #1 Tracklisting
            1 Poet And The Pendulum
            2 Bye Bye Beautiful
            3 Amaranth
            4 Cadence Of Her Last Breath
            5 Master Passion Greed
            6 Eva
            7 Sahara
            8 Whoever Brings The Night
            9 For The Heart I Once Had
            10 Islander
            11 Last Of The Wilds
            12 7 Days To The Wolves
            13 Meadows Of Heaven