Rating:
7.0
Tarja - What Lies Beneath
31 August 2010


Disc I [US version]
01. Anteroom Of Death [feat. Van Canto]
02. Until My Last Breath
03. Dark Star [feat. Phil Labonte]
04. Underneath
05. Little Lies
06. Rivers Of Lust
07. In For A Kill
08. Montañas de Silencio [exclusive U.S. track]
09. Falling Awake [feat. Joe Satriani]
10. The Archive Of Lost Dreams
11. Crimson Deep [feat. Will Calhoun]

Disc I [international version]
01. Anteroom Of Death [feat. Van Canto]
02. Until My Last Breath
03. I Feel Immortal [exclusive international track]
04. In For A Kill
05. Underneath
06. Little Lies
07. Rivers Of Lust
08. Dark Star [feat. Phil Labonte]
09. Falling Awake [feat. Joe Satriani]
10. The Archive Of Lost Dreams
11. Crimson Deep [feat. Will Calhoun]

Disc II [Limited Deluxe Edition Bonus Disc]
01. We Are
02. Naiad
03. Still Of The Night
+ Tarja Speaks About "What Lies Beneath" [video]


Tarja Turunen requires no special introductions, even people outside the metal scene know her, so I will proceed to what I'm here for, review her latest effort, What Lies Beneath. To be honest, I was wondering the same thing as the title, hoping it will be something very good, judging from the fact Tarja holds all artistic freedom within her hands since her Nightwish sunset.

Everybody knows what a fabulous interpreter Tarja is, her operatic lines are highly expressive, enriching any fragile emotion with her aura and for one more time she stands behind the microphone with passion and honesty, breathing life to the words that consist of the lyrics. Could this be enough? Well, no, otherwise every gifted vocalist would sing a capella without the ensemble of musical background. Music is like an entertainment airplane, if it's decent, a trained pilot will succeed in his goals in order to please the crowd. The difference between a trained and a mature, high class pilot is that the second one won't just please the crowds, he will make them scream their lungs out of happiness. They have something in common though, no matter how talented they are, if the airplane has major problems, the pilot goes down with it. The same applies for the music body of a band and the singer, no matter how good the singer might be, if the music doesn't have this something that will help the singer make it reach stratospheric amounts of highness, it will remain grounded the least. If it won't crash.

Well, concerning Tarja's situation, the plane crashed, she had the chance though to hit the eject button and the parachute managed to save her. In that case, there are songs that have something to say, but most of them set sail on the vast waters of mediocrity and not even her voice can make the sea awaken with waves of inspiration. The main character of What Lies Beneath is the simplistic yet symphonic/atmospheric one and Tarja's operatic vocal lines and then according to the more specific music structure the songs are metal-driven compositions, rock-oriented ones or just acoustic pieces. Some of them that caught my attention have to be "Until My Last Breath", "In For A Kill", "I Feel Immortal", "Rivers Of Lust", "Fall Awake" with Joe Satriani trying to prevent the crash from the communication tower with some interesting solo instructions and "The Archive Of Lost Dreams". The problem is that Tarja's personal work sounds almost like second league Nightwish, with this meaning that we've heard Tarja before in such compositions which were more emotional, diverse, complex and of course, they complimented her voice even more.

What Lies Beneath might be a pleasing and fair enough offering for the common listener of generic symphonic metal with characteristic voice and probably it has something more to say to the Tarja-obsessed audience, yet, all I know is that Tuomas Holopainen's compositions scream for Tarja Turunen behind the microphone and Tarja's compositions are not enough for her vocal abilities.

The most generous rating i could give:

2.5 + 4 + 3.5 + 3.5 + 3 + 3 + 3 +3 + 3.5 + 3 + 3 = 34.5/11 = 3.13 to 5 = 6.26 to 10.

9 + 6 + 7 + 9 = 31/4 = 7.75

6.26 + 7.75 = 14.01/2 = 7.005 = 7.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 7
Production: 9


Band profile: Tarja
Album: What Lies Beneath


 



Written on 25.09.2010 by
DerRozzengarten
"It is myself I have never met, whose face is pasted on the underside of my mind."
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Dark†SymphonY - 25.09.2010 at 18:49  
I have to agree with the rating and review even though I gave it an 8, Tarja is still strong and her voice is never a disappointment, (for me that is). I do agree that the songwriting skills are very weak and nothing really new or different. But still she has performed well throughout the album.
mariano - 25.09.2010 at 19:40  
Written by DerRozzengarten on 25.09.2010 at 00:00

...all I know is that Tuomas Holopainen's compositions scream for Tarja Turunen behind the microphone and Tarja's compositions are not enough for her vocal abilities.

-can't be more agreed on that.
Unfortunately, it seems they will never get together again. I have had to resign myself to listen other bands but there won't be another Nightwish.
Elodie Artour - 25.09.2010 at 20:23  
That's a really good review with some beautiful descriptions!

As a die-hard-Tarja-fan, I'm pleased with "What Lies Beneath." As a an objective person/reviewer, however, I'm pretty much disappointed. Compositions are (once again) weak and I did expect much more of it. In contrast with "My Winter Storm," most ballads are also quite weak. Otherwise, there are some interesting stories behind the concept and I think Tarja had many things to say with this record.

As for the rating, I wouldn't have given more than 7.5 either. It's quite fair.
-DC-002- - 25.09.2010 at 23:06  
Mediocrity is What Lies Beneath.
Almagest - 26.09.2010 at 00:55  
No, Mediocrity is recent Nightwish.

The compositions are actually good, they're just not in the vein of traditional hard rock or metal, but they are quite clever and deep. They just don't always quite open up on first listen. There's a lot of little detail that easily passes over your head but makes the songs very relistenable and is testimony to the meticulous care devoted to the songwriting. What Lies Beneath, beneath the surface, indeed. If you measure Tarja's work only by comparing it to Holopainen's overrated cheesy-epic, poppy and repetitive fluff (as if anyone in that band could compete with Tarja's musicians, let alone Satriani), with a laundry check list apparently, you'll never discover the true depth of the songs on this album. Not to mention the incredibly catchy but interesting melodies here. The biggest surprises were the bonus tracks.

This album is another grower; I like it more and more and am beginning to appreciate the way the songs are constructed. Nightwish's recent albums, on the other hands, were the opposite.

That even devoted metalheads can appreciate the songs on this album is demonstrated by the unexpectedly positive reviews on Metal Archives
Adus11 - 26.09.2010 at 01:23  
The best song is Naiad and I think it's a special edition only. Shame. Like the album overall but it didn't wow me.
DerRozzengarten - 26.09.2010 at 01:24  
Naiad and We Are from the special edition are very good songs
Raziel X - 26.09.2010 at 04:58  
Lol almagest, you sound like a scientist who tries to say that a drop of water could actually quench thirst of thousands, they just dont see it

this album is not deep, the compositions are changing yes, but they are going nowhere, the flow is mediocre... tuomas, despite having more simple compositions at times, can write more complex stuff than this, and at least it goes somewhere... you can get that the melody and stuff go hand in hand to achieve desired effect on listener, and not always on first listen...

I dont mean to be rude, but you are trying to find complexity and depth where there is very little of it... her vocals are good, this album is a bit of improvement from last one, but still, compared to her voice, every other aspect of the album falls way short... and dont talk about opening on more listens... I am a prog fan, and I am used to giving albums a lot of listens, some I can already see through after a couple... and I can tell you that while Tuomas sometimes relies on more simple parts, he can WRITE songs to fit any singer, while Tarja cant write great stuff for the awesome voice she has... Tuomas can use any potential he has at hand, while Tarja cant use her golden potential... ))
mr.archness - 27.09.2010 at 01:04  
Written by Dark†SymphonY on 25.09.2010 at 18:49

I have to agree with the rating and review even though I gave it an 8, Tarja is still strong and her voice is never a disappointment, (for me that is). I do agree that the songwriting skills are very weak and nothing really new or different. But still she has performed well throughout the album.

i do agree, nothing more to add
Dragonlord TG - 29.09.2010 at 17:58  
I love the first half of the album. I think it's fantastic. But get's a little weaker towards the end.
Lovecraft - 30.09.2010 at 04:15  
Written by Dragonlord TG on 29.09.2010 at 17:58

I love the first half of the album. I think it's fantastic. But get's a little weaker towards the end.

Agreed.
kurokamen - 02.10.2010 at 19:08  
"Tuomas Holopainen's compositions scream for Tarja Turunen behind the microphone and Tarja's compositions are not enough for her vocal abilities."

Absolute Truth... Holopainen is a great composer, but Olson is a pop star singer... Tarja is a great singer but her songs lack a clever musical structure... Everyone could write as she does...
Almagest - 10.10.2010 at 04:17  
Written by Raziel X on 26.09.2010 at 04:58
Lol almagest, you sound like a scientist who tries to say that a drop of water could actually quench thirst of thousands, they just dont see it

Well, obviously the album DOES satisfy a lot of people, even people who are otherwise firm metalheads. So your comparison is mighty strange.

Written by Raziel X on 26.09.2010 at 04:58
this album is not deep, the compositions are changing yes, but they are going nowhere, the flow is mediocre...

What is that supposed to mean? It doesn't make sense.

Written by Raziel X on 26.09.2010 at 04:58
tuomas, despite having more simple compositions at times, can write more complex stuff than this, and at least it goes somewhere... you can get that the melody and stuff go hand in hand to achieve desired effect on listener, and not always on first listen...

Most of his stuff is incredibly superficial, and doesn't exactly need time to open up.

Written by Raziel X on 26.09.2010 at 04:58
I dont mean to be rude, but you are trying to find complexity and depth where there is very little of it...

Like you in Nightwish's songs?

I never said all of the songs on WLB are particularly deep or complex, but there is a lot of little detail that you just don't discover at first listen at all.

Written by Raziel X on 26.09.2010 at 04:58
her vocals are good, this album is a bit of improvement from last one, but still, compared to her voice, every other aspect of the album falls way short... and dont talk about opening on more listens... I am a prog fan, and I am used to giving albums a lot of listens, some I can already see through after a couple... and I can tell you that while Tuomas sometimes relies on more simple parts, he can WRITE songs to fit any singer, while Tarja cant write great stuff for the awesome voice she has... Tuomas can use any potential he has at hand, while Tarja cant use her golden potential... ))

Uhm, you do realise that complexity does not equal "goodness"? The reviewers on Metal Archives understood that. You don't seem to. Actually, complex stuff is not that difficult to write (as opposed to perform).

That said, are you kidding me? Nightwish's songs can hardly be described as "complex", especially in the rock department. OK, the orchestrations are pretty complex, but they're peripheral to the songs, and to metal in general. Nightwish is nowhere like actual prog, it's very simple, accessible music most of the time.

What is annoying about people with this attitude is that they act as if there was only a single way of writing songs, i. e., Holopainen's. Not so. There are lots of different approaches to songwriting, and it's not all just Holopainen, Holopainen, Holopainen, who, I repeat, is incredibly overrated and far from the best songwriter in metal. Especially not nowadays.

Tarja's songwriting style is entirely different. More moody. And of course, she bases her songs on the vocal lines, not guitar riffs or solos. She doesn't write metal - but then, Holopainen doesn't exactly write particularly aggressive or guitar-based music, either. Nor is he anything like a keyboard virtuoso like Jens Johansson.

Moreover, of course, Tarja has a full ten years less experience in songwriting.

I don't get all this ass-licking for Holopainen nowadays. When Tarja was still in the band, the band's music was still universally blasted for being cheesy, girly and commercial, with awfully lame guitars and drums.

Many songs on WLB don't sound like anything Holopainen has ever written. Anteroom of Death reminds me more of Diablo Swing Orchestra (hell, even Lord K admitted that it is refreshing), Crimson Deep more of The Gathering. I agree that We Are and Naiad are good songs, again they are very different from Holopainen's style which is very recognisable and basically the same all the time. Naiad is not exactly a particularly complex song, though, but it's got a pretty awesome chorus. But We Are is very different, quite daring and progressive sounding in parts, I can even sense a little bit of Opeth's sound in it (the melodies, the melancholy, the moody, bassy verses), and your beloved Holopainen would never come up with something like it. It's just totally out of his - rather limited - range. Tarja's songs are less bombastic - she doesn't try to impress the listener with cheesy, Disneyish sounding, formulaic crap like yet-another-flute-solo - but subtler. HER songwriting is actually clever. Perhaps because she actually has an understanding of classical music.

That said, Tarja's band shits on Nightwish, too. Especially Terrana - give me a break.
Raziel X - 10.10.2010 at 04:58  
XD

I do realise that complexity doesnt equal goodness - I listen to stuff from simple power metal to proggy madness

but yea, comparisons with NW aside, as this is where either side has their arguments and both have part of truth... even then, nothing exceptional... I am not that expectant usually, but with Tarja I expect a lot of things, cos of her vocals... and as I said, this album shows progress and is clearly better than previous, but still it is not enough for me to call this awesome... but who knows, maybe sometime

kurokamen, you are kinda right...

to be honest almagest, dunno where you hear Opeth or something, I love those bands and I know their stuff well and I dont hear it there... I gave the album enough listens, like I did back with Unia by Sonata Arctica, and the album opened itself pretty soon to me, but it didnt deliver... and that she is basing songs on her vocal lines, and so what? the music should make the vocal lines more powerful, but it simply doesnt, at least IMO...

and pleaseee, even if you are pissed, this is not place for insults or using curses unless really necessary... you dont need that to make your point, just for future

so as for me, I will pass and rather look forward to better new stuff - Symphony X, Amaseffer and Virgin Steele, to name few.

P.S.: If you want "moody" music, go and listen rather to last two After Forever albums, either of those beat this one by miles
Almagest - 10.10.2010 at 05:11  
It doesn't have to be exceptional to be good, either. But it's a quite refreshing record that doesn't sound like every other symphonic/"gothic" metal disc, and isn't full of sickly sweet melodies like her old band's albums, either.

I already said where I was reminded of Opeth's sound, but of course "We Are" is not anywhere like their music. And by the way, I'm not the only one who was reminded of DSO at all. Of course Tarja is not simply copying anyone's sound, it just sounds a bit like them. It's just a fucking comparison.

No, the "music" doesn't need to make the vocal lines more powerful. Music isn't all about power. THIS - IS - NOT - METAL. Got it?

Also, the vocal lines are PART of the music. Powerful vocal lines = powerful music. They can even be a cappella and still be powerful. Again, your thinking is obviously stuck in your metal box. Do you even listen to anything else?

Actually, I enjoy "My Winter Storm" quite a lot, especially the acoustic or semi-acoustic songs. Yes, they are quiet and have nothing to do with metal, but frankly, WHO FUCKING CARES. (I'll curse as much as I want, you know.) The guitar parts on the other hand were pretty crappy most of the time and the drums didn't sound well either, I also did notice problems with the production, but overall, the album isn't bad overall and I still enjoy listening to it.

I still believe you are narrow-minded and place too many overly specific expectations on Tarja's music. Her music is less powerful and fast than Nightwish's, and it's not really metal at all (but then, Nightwish's music isn't that metal anymore, either), but it's still good - in its OWN terms. That's something I believe you just don't get. You still treat it by metal's standards, which will always make it appear bad.

It would be no problem for Tarja to get Loureiro, Smolski, Youngblood, Turilli or even Satriani to write songs for her that beat the crap out of Nightwish, metal/prog/guitar songwriting wise. But she doesn't want to. She just doesn't like to go the easy or obvious way, like any true artist. Even if she could sell more albums if she returned to a Wishmaster-meets-Once-like style, perhaps even mixing it with Yngwie and Dream Theater influences.

I mean, there are a number of operatic metal type bands with guitar (and other instrumental) parts that are simple, nothing special and barely metal - DSO, Angizia, Haggard, (early) Epica, to some extent even After Forever (and of course NW, too, BTW) - but you can't say those bands aren't good, or not original. It's simply part of the genre. You don't listen to operatic metal for awe-inspiring riffs or solos, at least not mainly, it's just a nice bonus if it happens to be there. You listen for the vocals, first of all.

Also, why should she repeat what she has already done with Nightwish? Why should she copy Holopainen's style, or anyone else's for that matter? It's her fucking solo career, she can do what she wants, and she fucking does.

By the way, simple music can actually be much harder to write than complex music. Why does metal always have to be more this, more that? It's beginning to annoy me about the scene. It's not the fucking Olympic Games, it's music, FFS!

In fact, it is just a sign of what an EPIC FAIL Holopainen is as a composer is that he doesn't even care about ranges and skills, Mr. Master Composer just writes something that he thinks sounds cool regardless whether the other people in the band or even he himself can perform it. I guess that's one reason why he works so much with orchestras and guest musicians now; they have less difficulty to perform whatever pointless crap he may come up with. Keyboard wank that he can't even play himself in concert, in original speed != good music.
Raziel X - 11.10.2010 at 04:55  
Are you reading my posts? One thing I hate is when somebody puts words in my mouth I didnt even say or mean... I am not stuck in metal box, I listen to many different genres outside metal, I can even take good pop if it is written well... I dont need guitar orgies either if the music does its job...

for me simply the music doesnt make her vocals shine, it plain drowns them... I dont care if she wants to play metal or not, but I want it to be good...

the album has its moment but it simply isnt enough...

and stop calling me narrow minded just cos I have an opinion that doesnt match yours...

again, yes, she is different than NW, she is a little tad different than symph./operatic metal stuff, but not awesome either... but being different doesnt always mean good either...

and as I said, you dont need curses to make your point

P.S.: Listening to ReVamp, and liking it more than this
Raziel X - 13.10.2010 at 15:07  
Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwYfNQJbCOg

Am I the only one who thinks that a couple of Tarja's songs, including I feel immortal, sound pretty close to this one? I mean, the song is not exactly bad, but come on, she can do so much better than that, or someone else for her...
MétalNoir - 14.10.2010 at 00:17  
"Tarja's personal work sounds almost like second league Nightwish, with this meaning that we've heard Tarja before in such compositions which were more emotional, diverse, complex and of course, they complimented her voice even more."

Exactly. It's like an angel fallen from Heaven right into a pool of shit. No matter how good her voice is, the music is still boooring.
Raziel X - 14.10.2010 at 04:41  
I wouldnt go as far as to call it utter shoot, but the vocals are so much better than anything else... the music just doesnt do her voice justice...

I mean, take ReVamp, Imperia or Angtoria, those are so much better than this. Especially ReVamp, which isnt as good as AF, but the music at least does Floor Jansen's voice justice. She knows at least how to write stuff for herself, and she is more versatile too.

I hope that Tarja gets a serious attitude adjuster and gets someone who can write music for her.

What lies beneath isnt so bad, but it just doesnt impress me, even after couple more listens today, which I did in attempt to find the depth and such... I didnt find it though
Almagest - 18.10.2010 at 02:57  
I can't take anyone seriously who gives Nightwish (especially their recent work) as an example for "depth". Pretentiousness, pyrotechnics, budget, image, even experience that makes your music, arrangements and melodies sound professional, polished and slick, all that is no substitute for depth. If anyone can explain me in detail where the "depth" in Once or DPP is supposed to lie, please do so. I only hear overproduced glamourous poppy crud. Nothing you have said so far has actually had the mere potential to convince me that her music isn't good; plainly stating "it sucks" or "other stuff is better" isn't enough - I still don't have the slightest idea what exactly you are even *missing*. Hell, you even admitted yourself that one or two of her songs are very good and impressed you indeed. Of course I'm not saying that the album is all-around awesome and without fault, but it is hardly as bad as you are painting it here (like in, "hell she needs to get a real songwriter!!!1"). Of course you could admit that your personal opinion is just that and no better than mine, but wouldn't that be boring?

Nor can I take anyone seriously who suggests that Tarja is the one with the attitude problem, as opposed to Mr. "Poor Me".

Actually I do think you are narrow-minded, because obviously a lot of people knowledgeable in metal and music in general are impressed with Tarja's work and consider it a fresh spin on the genre. Or are you trying to tell me that those are all blind teenage fangirls who haven't seen the light of "good songwriting" in the form of Holopainen yet?

Versatility, by the way, isn't exactly a measure of "goodness", either. Tarja's music doesn't fit any of the conventional neat little boxes. But who cares? That's not what music is about. By the way, have you noticed the Hammond organ in "Anteroom of Death" or the acoustic guitars in "Until My Last Breath"?

I think you are all still caught up in the idea you got from Holopainen's letter that Tarja has got an attitude problem, which prevents you from approaching Tarja's music with an open mind; a lot of people had to attend a concert of hers to finally appreciate how much her songs, and her band, truly rock. The impression I get here is that you are like "so, OK, Tarja has a better voice, more skilled drummer, bassist, guitarist ... etc., technically, and NW's music isn't as good as it used to be, the skills of the band have degraded as well, but we can't admit that Ms. Diva > NW now, so we must find something to criticise! So we are focussing on something that is much more subjective. Yeah, Tarja sucks because ... because ... she can't write a song for shit!" I'd say the one who needs a serious attitude adjuster isn't her.
Almagest - 24.10.2010 at 19:22  
Written by Guest on 24.10.2010 at 17:15

I always find negative and critical people funny! The knowledge they think they have about a band or a composer is interesting, and the better side of it is when they talk as if they were making a speech about global warming for one of NASA's crisis meetings. At least the criticism among Nightiwish, which is only a fucking idiotic trend nowadays. If you can't see the "deeper meanings" and emotion in songs like Creek Mary's Blood, Higher than Hope, TPATP, GLS and Meadows of Heaven it really isn't Holopainen's problem, but yours.

Nice try. Let's restate that:

I always find negative and critical people funny! The knowledge they think they have about a band or a composer is interesting, and the better side of it is when they talk as if they were making a speech about global warming for one of NASA's crisis meetings. At least the criticism against Tarja, which is only a fucking idiotic trend nowadays. If you can't see the deeper meanings and emotion in songs like "Anteroom of Death", "Underneath", "Crimson Deep" or "In for a Kill", then it really isn't Tarja's problem, but yours.

So?

That said, if you think an attempt to destroy one's reputation and career isn't "serious business", you're out of your mind.

Written by Guest on 24.10.2010 at 17:15

There is just too plain stupid to criticize an artist for all his work when it's all about a matter of taste, own opinions and perception.

So, what are YOU doing here, then?

(That said, I still like the old Nightwish stuff, before they sold out, so your accusation is quite off.)

Written by Guest on 24.10.2010 at 17:15

About this album: I agree with what most of you already have said, this album has her golden voice, but the compositions is just too easy, lack inspiration and are going nowhere, as you pointed out in the review.

How funny, that's exactly how I feel about DPP (and Once, too, for the most part).

Written by Guest on 24.10.2010 at 17:15

Come on Tarja, move on (Dark Star lyrics).

What do you mean? You think the lyrics are directed to a certain someone? Even if that was really the case: Has the certain someone moved on? No, he hasn't, his band is still playing BBB, still selling MPG, he's still not recanted his accusations or shown regret for what he has done, not a bit.

Written by Guest on 24.10.2010 at 17:15

My happiest moments was I Feel Immortal, Dark Star and Underneath. 6.5-7/10

You complain about too easy compositions but list those songs as the best? LOL. Holopainen fanboys are just too funny in their inconsistence.
Ruudz - 24.10.2010 at 19:22  
I always find negative and critical people funny! The knowledge they think they have about a band or a composer is interesting, and the better side of it is when they talk as if they were making a speech about global warming for one of NASA's crisis meetings. At least the criticism among Nightiwish, which is only a fucking idiotic trend nowadays. If you can't see the "deeper meanings" and emotion in songs like Creek Mary's Blood, Higher than Hope, TPATP, GLS and Meadows of Heaven it really isn't Holopainen's problem, but yours. There is just too plain stupid to criticize an artist for all his work when it's all about a matter of taste, own opinions and perception.

My opinion on this album is what most of you already have said, this album has her golden voice, but the compositions is just too easy, lack inspiration and are going nowhere, as you pointed out in the review. Come on Tarja, move on (Dark Star lyrics). My happiest moments was I Feel Immortal, Dark Star and Underneath. 6.5-7/10
Ruudz - 24.10.2010 at 19:31  
Well, first of all. I'm a fan of both Holopainen and Tarja, and I was telling you my opinion on this album, not her in general, who I, personally, find not so good with weak compositions. I, personally, don't see the deph's in her songs, and I do not blame Tarja for that. Just telling what I felt. And second, the leg I wrote about the criticism was general about all hating that goes on Nightwish and other artist that do well out there.
Almagest - 24.10.2010 at 19:39  
Written by Raziel X on 13.10.2010 at 15:07

Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwYfNQJbCOg

Am I the only one who thinks that a couple of Tarja's songs, including I feel immortal, sound pretty close to this one?

Or to Nightwish's singles ...

That said, as Tarja has indicated in her blog, I Feel Immortal wasn't even a song that Tarja wanted to record in the first place, the label forced it on her. The song was originally written for Kerli, an Estonian pop singer, so no wonder it sounds like a commercial pop song, because it is one - one that Tarja adapted to her style as well as she could.

OK, guys, let me get this straight:

When Hietala left Sinergy and joined Nightwish, he stated that he didn't even like Nightwish's and preferred Sinergy's, but that money was the reason. This can be found in the Nightwish biography. He also stated on the Tarot website that the best thing about Nightwish is that music can now be his day job, so money is his main motivation.

Holopainen has complained that Nightwish is a "burden". Oh poor boy, then why does he still endure that heavy burden? For the fans? Forgive me for laughing. But then, Hietala and Holopainen have been overheard mocking their audience and complaining about all the teenage girls in the audience, so I don't think that my cynicism is entirely unjustified to put it mildly.

From album to album, he steered the band's music in a more and more commercial direction. HOLOPAINEN. No-one else. It was HIS decision.

It was he who - after getting Hietala to join the band - told Tarja to tone down her vocals, and she was against it at first.

He also changed the style of the music, and I doubt that Tarja was happy about it because it diminished the importance of her part, first on Century Child, then even more so on Once.

Tarja had no say in all that, clearly. Nobody even doubts that. She was just doing what she was told.

A lot of fans were unhappy with the changes and accused Nightwish of selling out, especially when Nemo hit the top 10 single charts in Germany, the band appeared in Top of the Pops, etc.

To remind you: Hietala and Holopainen have effectively admitted in public that they are only in it for the money, not the music.

Then they fire Tarja accompanied by a big (and hardly surprising) media uproar, especially within the metal scene, with an open letter in which they accuse Tarja of having developped a commercial attitude!

All the while Tarja is being an utter role model in public and especially at her solo concerts, putting the members of her former band to shame. Yeah right, she totally lives up to her reputation. Only fangirls could deny that.

Can't ... you ... see ... the freaking ... contra ... diction?

Can't you see it?!

They resorted to character assassination just to save their asses!

Again: WHO is the one in need of an "attitude adjustment"??

WHO is the one who is full of shit?

The hypocrisy of people here is quite incredible. If you weren't that freaking prejudiced, you'd recognise Nightwish's music as what it is: Pop dressed up. Only in a very, very pretentious way.
Ruudz - 24.10.2010 at 19:52  
Written by Almagest on 24.10.2010 at 19:39

Written by Raziel X on 13.10.2010 at 15:07

Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwYfNQJbCOg

Am I the only one who thinks that a couple of Tarja's songs, including I feel immortal, sound pretty close to this one?

Or to Nightwish's singles ...

That said, as Tarja has indicated in her blog, I Feel Immortal wasn't even a song that Tarja wanted to record in the first place, the label forced it on her. The song was originally written for Kerli, an Estonian pop singer, so no wonder it sounds like a commercial pop song, because it is one - one that Tarja adapted to her style as well as she could.

OK, guys, let me get this straight:

When Hietala left Sinergy and joined Nightwish, he stated that he didn't even like Nightwish's and preferred Sinergy's, but that money was the reason. This can be found in the Nightwish biography. He also stated on the Tarot website that the best thing about Nightwish is that music can now be his day job, so money is his main motivation.

Holopainen has complained that Nightwish is a "burden". Oh poor boy, then why does he still endure that heavy burden? For the fans? Forgive me for laughing. But then, Hietala and Holopainen have been overheard mocking their audience and complaining about all the teenage girls in the audience, so I don't think that my cynicism is entirely unjustified to put it mildly.

From album to album, he steered the band's music in a more and more commercial direction. HOLOPAINEN. No-one else. It was HIS decision.

It was he who - after getting Hietala to join the band - told Tarja to tone down her vocals, and she was against it at first.

He also changed the style of the music, and I doubt that Tarja was happy about it because it diminished the importance of her part, first on Century Child, then even more so on Once.

Tarja had no say in all that, clearly. Nobody even doubts that. She was just doing what she was told.

A lot of fans were unhappy with the changes and accused Nightwish of selling out, especially when Nemo hit the top 10 single charts in Germany, the band appeared in Top of the Pops, etc.

To remind you: Hietala and Holopainen have effectively admitted in public that they are only in it for the money, not the music.

Then they fire Tarja accompanied by a big (and hardly surprising) media uproar, especially within the metal scene, with an open letter in which they accuse Tarja of having developped a commercial attitude!

All the while Tarja is being an utter role model in public and especially at her solo concerts, putting the members of her former band to shame. Yeah right, she totally lives up to her reputation. Only fangirls could deny that.

Can't ... you ... see ... the freaking ... contra ... diction?

Can't you see it?!

They resorted to character assassination just to save their asses!

Again: WHO is the one in need of an "attitude adjustment"??

WHO is the one who is full of shit?

The hypocrisy of people here is quite incredible. If you weren't that freaking prejudiced, you'd recognise Nightwish's music as what it is: Pop dressed up. Only in a very, very pretentious way.


After all this mess of words and hate, you forgot the three most important words: In My Opinion
Raziel X - 29.10.2010 at 02:24  
"Fresh to the genre", " doesnt fit any box" dont make me laugh please... heard stuff like this before and as in this case I rather moved on something better...

you are preaching us about how we should be open to other opinions and respect them, but at the same time you are trashing ours as something inferior to yours, with lots of curses in between that really dont have anything to do there...

and btw I read both open letters, and forgot em soon enough as they both were saying something opposite, just as I ignored Strato-Tolkki issues after a couple reads... it is media poop and we will never find out how it truly was... what matters to me is music...

and am I not right if I think that metal is about freedom and respect to each other? how about showing some to others, lets begin with saying IMO before you say your personal opinion...

I am tired of ppl telling me I am narrowminded when I am not, of ppl preaching me and thinking how superior they are to me... heated debate doesnt mean you jump after everybody who states a different opinion to yours...

because of ppl like you I didnt listen to either Tarja or Nightwish for over a year, maybe year and half... and I both liked those... but I got so disgusted about especially Tarja fans whining about how NW is the epitome of evil etc...
Raziel X - 29.10.2010 at 02:24  
And Ruudz, kudos, you're right at many points
Almagest - 31.10.2010 at 03:32  
Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

"Fresh to the genre", " doesnt fit any box" dont make me laugh please... heard stuff like this before and as in this case I rather moved on something better...

Better ... in your opinion, right?

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

you are preaching us about how we should be open to other opinions and respect them, but at the same time you are trashing ours as something inferior to yours, with lots of curses in between that really dont have anything to do there...

As someone who trashed Tarja for her supposedly haughty attitude based only on some biased letter, you are in a rather poor position to preach to others about openmindedness and respect.

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

and btw I read both open letters, and forgot em soon enough as they both were saying something opposite,

There's also Marcelo's Answers to the Fans, which goes into a lot more detail.

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

just as I ignored Strato-Tolkki issues after a couple reads... it is media poop and we will never find out how it truly was... what matters to me is music...

Then don't comment on Tarja's supposed attitude or character.

But unfortunately, my insight is that when it comes to Nightwish and Tarja, it's NEVER "only about the music". Not anymore - not since the letter brought all that unrelated stuff up. That dragged it all to a personal level, putting pressure on the fans and keeping them hostage frivolously, when a neutral statement about "artistic differences", bland and unsatisfying as it may be, would have been the decent and totally usual way to go. There's a principle among musicians that you don't trash your colleagues (much less bandmates), which Holopainen has violated on other occasions, as well.

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

and am I not right if I think that metal is about freedom and respect to each other? how about showing some to others, lets begin with saying IMO before you say your personal opinion...

There is a difference, though: The damage to the reputation (and indirectly, career) of Tarja and her husband is real, not a matter of opinion. Also, insults cannot be excused by saying "IMO". Not EVERYTHING is "IMO".

Arguments and facts to support a position aren't "IMO" either. All your talk about "IMO" is just a cop out.

You got personal when it was totally uncalled for. And that's also why I doubt that you are really as free of prejudice as you claim.

I've seen reviews criticising aspects of this album, but they were fair, weighing weaknesses against strengths, commenting on individual songs and not just generalising about the album in a way that gives the impression that the reviewer didn't even listen to it. Even a review as negative, polemic and curse-filled as Lord K's singled out at least one song in a positive manner. People need to realise who they write reviews for, and what the reader expects from a helpful review.

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

I am tired of ppl telling me I am narrowminded when I am not, of ppl preaching me and thinking how superior they are to me... heated debate doesnt mean you jump after everybody who states a different opinion to yours...

That's beside the point. I don't attack people for having a different opinion, or not liking something that I like, alone. But so many people take it to a personal level, and that's not a civil way of expressing one's opinion.

Written by Raziel X on 29.10.2010 at 02:24

because of ppl like you I didnt listen to either Tarja or Nightwish for over a year, maybe year and half... and I both liked those... but I got so disgusted about especially Tarja fans whining about how NW is the epitome of evil etc...

And how about NW fans whining about how Tarja is such a worthless bitch who almost destroyed the band and can't write a song to save her life? How exactly is that different?

That's what I call hypocrisy! And that's what *I*'m fed up with! People who don't give a damn for Tarja and still insult her. I'm tired about cowards hating on her and then, when called up to their behaviour, come up with pathetic, contradictory and hypocritical excuses.

Either you are neutral, then you should refrain from judging any side, or you look at the facts and make your mind up, and those are clear enough. You cannot pretend not to care and still judge - can't have it both ways!

There are a lot of artists I don't give a damn about either, but I don't insult them or accuse them of a bad attitude because I just don't know enough about them to judge them. It would be utterly unfair to do so, to comment on someone you don't know anything about, and I recommend you to act the same way.

But if you're not willing to take back what you said, I can expect you to have a look at the "Tarja is such a diva" blog. Just take the latest entry:

http://www.tarjaissuchadiva.com/2010/10/kevin-chown-talks-about-tarja.html#more

It's interesting that Marco and Tuomas have been overheard mocking their audience and complaining that so many teenage girls come to their shows. Figures.

I'm not a blind fanboi, either. I do see weaknesses in the album. I don't like, either, how there are several overly commercial-styled, radio-friendly songs, too many ballads, and mainstream metal influences. In fact, I was VERY skeptical of the album, initially. I still find the songwriting lacking, as well, with too simplistic instrumental parts and arrangements. The best comparison would be with the Once album, IMO, and I acknowledge that the songwriting is better there. However, it's not THAT much superior (there are a couple of really weak songs on it, not to mention a few REALLY commercial and simplistic ones, as well), and with Tarja's lack of experience, I can't seriously expect her to match it. There is still a lot of creativity, and not all songs are totally radio-friendly. The album is far from a masterpiece, but for what it is, it's a pretty remarkable effort and clearly a cut above generic sympho-rock/metal, independent of whether I like it or not. That, I believe, deserves to be acknowledged.
Raziel X - 31.10.2010 at 22:53  
I read Marcelo's letter too... we are never going to learn the real truth behind things, only bits...

I got too personal? and didnt you get so damn serious about it all lol? like if I insulted your intelligence...

"...because I just don't know enough about them to judge them. It would be utterly unfair to do so, to comment on someone you don't know anything about, and I recommend you to act the same way."

then dont jump into conclusions about how openminded I am or am not and acting like you are so much better than I am, so leave your assessments of that to yourself and talk about music... cos I dont like certain album and state it clearly doesnt mean I am narrowminded... besides, addressing your post doesnt automatically mean a personal attack, so chill out dude

both groups of fans did some poop, both Tarja's and NW's, no point in being like oh that one threw more stuff than the other

and yes, I meant in my opinion when I said I was going to listen to something better... overall I think that Floor Jansen made a better job in overall songwriting and stuff on ReVamp than Tarja did with her stuff... yea it was closer to After Forever stuff than Tarja's was to NW, but what it doesnt lack is consistency in songs... both are awesome vocalists, but I think that Floor can write a bit better stuff than Tarja can
Paradox0 - 15.02.2011 at 00:32  
For the most part agree with the review, but I feel even harsher in some aspects. The songs seem to have some kind of ambition, but the instrumentation is pretty lackluster (yes you've heard this before), and could really just use some kind of elaboration, perhaps even opening up its melodies. At times it just feels like I'm listening to symphonic nu-metal. Other times I feel that Tarja just isn't fitting in with her own songs. I felt that at times, he operatic style of singing just didn't fit the song, as if it was made for someone with a bit more pop or rock vocal style. It seems like shes trying to make her voice more accessible, but then she just ends up missing whats great about her voice. Honestly if she was just a more adventurous artist, this might have been a better album.
Cryzpin - 24.02.2011 at 16:09  
To Almagest - your contributions to this thread are what i call "verbal trolling disorder", it's disgusting just to scroll over, just throwing trillions of words all over like monkey it's ejecta. Go write some blog ffs...
ErnilEnNaur - 24.02.2011 at 18:39  
Written by Cryzpin on 24.02.2011 at 16:09

To Almagest - your contributions to this thread are what i call "verbal trolling disorder", it's disgusting just to scroll over, just throwing trillions of words all over like monkey it's ejecta. Go write some blog ffs...


He's not trolling, but he does like to create strawmen. Poor little creature, a childhood trauma obviously fucked him up.
Tyelkormo - 14.05.2011 at 01:35  
As a belated add-on, Raziel creates plenty of strawmen hemself. Stating "I listen to stuff from simple power metal to proggy madness" as evidence of being able to judge quality and complexity when Tarja's influences go way beyond that range is scoring wide off the dartboard and acting if you scored a bullseye. Sort of like being used to listen to Death Metal and state about the Callas "Beautiful voice, but the stuff she sings...plain boring....and the fact that they need a few dozen musicians to support her demonstrates the lack of composing skill, being poorly hidden behind sheer mass of instrumentation".

As for Tuomas music craving Tarja's voice... frankly, it looked to me like he adapted pretty well to his new singer. And not in a good way. "Amaranth" to me was ramped-up elevator music. Artistically, the video to the song was ten times more creative than the song itself. While it may well be that Tarja impressed some more when with Nightwish than now, it should be underscored ten times that to expect her to continue even in a similar vein is foolish. Why should she? Aside from the label shoving stuff on her, she has reasonable creative control, so she can follow where her own feelings guide her and doesn't need to compromise with others or fit to certain preset genres. That may well mean a few albums of trying to find yourself. Does anyone still remember that Angels Fall First included plenty of acoustic guitar, quite distinct from later albums?

As for the music drowning her voice - I just saw her live plus two lead-up bands. With Tarja, not hearing her voice was at no point a problem - with one of the lead ups, very much so. She's certainly experimenting - doing an acoustic number in the middle of the concert was quite a contrast. But that's not at all bad. It might not be what one or the other wants to hear - but it is clear she refuses to let herself me filed in a specific folder. I, for one, am quite happy that's the case - and quite happy she doesn't try to be Nightwish sans Nightwish. While it may well be that, as another reviewer remarked, the album lacks some degree of cohesion, I'm well willing to grant her experimental albums to try and see what works and what doesn't.
Raziel X - 16.05.2011 at 17:48  
Written by Tyelkormo on 14.05.2011 at 01:35

As a belated add-on, Raziel creates plenty of strawmen hemself. Stating "I listen to stuff from simple power metal to proggy madness" as evidence of being able to judge quality and complexity when Tarja's influences go way beyond that range is scoring wide off the dartboard and acting if you scored a bullseye. Sort of like being used to listen to Death Metal and state about the Callas "Beautiful voice, but the stuff she sings...plain boring....and the fact that they need a few dozen musicians to support her demonstrates the lack of composing skill, being poorly hidden behind sheer mass of instrumentation".


And I really like ppl jumping to quick conclusions about other ppl just from a couple posts. I used that sentence not to show that I am the best judge ever, but to show that I listen to a wide range of stuff and am not just a biased listener of one genre. Besides, I like to support my opinions with arguments, what is bad on that? Plus - I got majorly pissed at Almagest, if you havent noticed he was kinda offending me / my opinions in his posts. I am still surprised I even wasted my time to react to those provocations
Tyelkormo - 19.05.2011 at 22:49  
"A wide range of stuff" - precisely the point. What you deem a wide range of stuff isn't that wide a range at all. Thanks for making my point. There's nothing bad with supporting your opinion with arguments. There's something bad about supporting it with straw men, however. Yes, you got majorly pissed at Almagest. Of course, the problem in doing so is that it's not particularly helpful for both keeping the moral high ground and keeping one's arguments solid.
Cuca Beludo - 06.12.2011 at 20:49  
She must return to nightwish, no matter what it takes.
Troy Killjoy - 06.12.2011 at 21:17  
Written by Guest on 06.12.2011 at 20:49
She must return to nightwish, no matter what it takes.

Impossible.
Cuca Beludo - 06.12.2011 at 21:24  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 06.12.2011 at 21:17

Written by Guest on 06.12.2011 at 20:49
She must return to nightwish, no matter what it takes.

Impossible.

I know.
jmm - 31.12.2011 at 19:15  
Written by Guest on 06.12.2011 at 20:49

She must return to nightwish, no matter what it takes.

She didn't have freedom in NW and it's better for her to have a solo career. If it is better for NW - nobody knows, but they're not as unique as before. NW is still a fantastic band but without one important element (unique vocal) they couldn't be as good as before.

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