Nightwish - First Concert With Anette

Event: Nightwish
Written by: Ernis, Ivan
Published: 26.09.2007

The following concert review concerns a very special event. On the 22nd of September in Tallinn Nightwish gave their first live performance in 2 years, and their first with the new singer Anette Olzon. The anticipations were high - a lot of people already heard Anette's singing, but how would she perform live, and would she be able to sing Tarja's songs?

As you might know, the 'premiere' was not exactly official - the event was advertised as a concert of Nightwish tribute band, "Nachtwasser". The reason for this, as well as for doing it in Tallinn, was probably to keep low profile for the first few gigs (2 similar concerts are planned for Finland and Germany) and make sure everything works as it should before starting a full-blown tour. Anyway, that certainly didn't fool the audience, even after a fake manager got on stage and with a heavy german accent announced "Nachtwasser" and even told us a bit of this "cover band" history. I wonder if there were any people in the audience who actually didn't know the real Nightwish were coming - I imagine the next few moments have been quite a surprise for them!

The band started with "Bye Bye Beautiful" - probably one of the best tracks of the new album, somewhat in the vein of "I Wish I Had An Angel" (I wonder if the title somehow refers to the former vocalist?...) It was then immediately followed by "Cadence Of Her Last Breath". These two songs from the new album were received very positively by the fans, but when Anette said she would give us the "Dark Chest Of Wonders" everyone in the front rows seemed to lose their minds and general excitement at least doubled. Songs came one after another without almost any pause and it seemed that with each new one the audience became crazier with delight and the band grew more and more enthusiastic. In fact, I've seen them live 5 times before, but this one easily beats them all by the sheer amounts of energy and the perfect chemistry between bandmembers - Anette and Marco worked amazingly well together, and songs where they both had vocal parts were a real treat. It seemed as if they were playing a wicked and intense game with each other on stage, both being angry when needed, tender when necessary. Emppu as usually was storming around like a restless jester with his guitar, at one point even plucking the strings of Marco's bass. Jukka kept the pace going on and Tuomas led the show as a captain with a small Jack Sparrow doll attached to his keyboard kit.

As for the question of whether Anette can perform Tarja's songs... She sure can - and some of them (Nemo, Slaying The Dreamer) sound even better now! Unfortunately, she was less successful with the 3 Wishmaster songs, due to her very different vocal technique - and that were the only moments I missed Tarja. The rest sounded considerably better, and all the new songs were absolutely terrific.

The crowd was definitely pleased and the band were clearly enjoying themselves on stage. I don't think this is an exaggeration to say that Anette was brilliant and almost stole the show. While Tarja was also good in her baroque queen-like presence and with her classical voice, Anette was a merry and fierce fairy whose appearance resembled that of Pippi Longstocking, a Swedish children's book character. Her crystal clear voice added passion and intensity into the older songs such as "Slaying The Dreamer" and "Wish I Had An Angel" and gave the new songs their power. On the other hand, she proved she could handle the slower and more emotional pieces just as well - songs like "Sleeping Sun", "Eva", "Ever Dream and "Nemo".

Marco Hietala was good as always with his unique vocals and "evil eyes" look. This time he showed the softer side of his voice in "The Islander" - which is the band's first acoustic ballad and is basically Marco's track (Anette is on back-vocals here). Four flaming torches decorating the stage really added to the atmosphere on this one - definitely one of the show's highlights. Somewhat surprisingly, the band also performed "The Poet And The Pendulum", epic masterpiece from "Dark Passion Play", which really showcases each bandmember's abilities (and of course, Tuomas' songwriting talents!). It was absolutely extatic - unfortunately, the 14 minutes of it went by all too quickly...

To sum up, the concert was indeed most special. The crowd didn't wish the band to leave and they returned to play more and even when they left the stage after that the audience was still crying "We want more!". The band returned to the stage for the final bow, their faces filled with sincere delight. "We love you, Anette!" - exclaimed a fan standing next to me in the front row, and the overall atmosphere in the venue left no doubt that the new and powerful era of Nightwish has now begun. We will wait for Anette, Tuomas, Jukka, Emppu and Marco to return to Tallinn in the future as well. And we will always be waiting for them to write more good music!

The band performed 17 songs, seven of them from the new album, three from Once, two from Century Child, three from Wishmaster and two from Oceanborn. Here's the setlist:

1. Bye Bye Beautiful
2. Cadence Of Her Last Breath
3. Dark Chest Of Wonders
4. Ever Dream
5. Come Cover Me
6. Amaranth
7. Sacrament Of Wilderness
8. The Islander
9. The Poet And The Pendulum
10. She Is My Sin
11. Sahara
12. Sleeping Sun
13. Slaying The Dreamer
14. Nemo

15. Eva
16. Wishmaster
17. Wish I Had An Angel

Written by Ivan and Viggo. Picture by Håkon Grav, taken from the official website.



Guest article disclaimer:
This is a guest article, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Comments page 2 / 2

Comments: 35   Visited by: 74 users
25.10.2007 - 22:04
@K7....that's what I've mentioned before....waiting for a proper live release......because she's heavy...
Go ahead, make my day...
12.11.2007 - 19:02
Account deleted
Sounds fantastic, I really hope they record a live dvd/cd for this tour.
13.11.2007 - 21:46
Account deleted
I saw them on Saturday at The White Rabbit in San Antonio, Texas....

She was better than I expected her to be, but still nowhere near Tarja

The new songs were good, but when she tried to sing Tarja's songs, I was disappointed

Especially on Creek Mary's Blood, Higher than Hope, and Nemo

But John Two-Hawks was there to salvage her performance on Creek Mary's Blood

I did get to meet them and talk to them, though, and Bye Bye Beautiful IS about Tarja

Here's the setlist and pictures:

Bye Bye Beautiful
Dark Chest of Wonders
Whoever Brings the Night
The Islander
The Poet and the Pendulum
Come Cover Me
Higher than Hope
Creek Mary's Blood
Wish I Had an Angel

Emppu is amazing
14.11.2007 - 23:15
Lone wanderer
Interesting... I didnt really pay attention on Nightwish for few years, for some reason, but I might look it now.... Good article man.
28.11.2007 - 14:33
Account deleted
Passion and the Opera
The Pharaoh sails to Orion

they included Sacrament, and that would be the only Nightwish's song I d be interested in. Wish I had an angel is more suitable for a disco pub than a metal concert in my opinion. Nevermind, I m probably the only one who believes that Oceanborn is the real deal and what followed isn worth it.

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