The first songs I heard from Tristania were from Beyond the Veil album. Later I bought Widow's Weeds, and I must admit, that altough both albums have their own distinct style I still prefer Widow's Weeds more. Maybe it's because of the melancholy dark romantic theme or songwriting, maybe it's the peaceful sound.
Usually a metal album is heavily compressed and way too loud and aggressive. Widow's Weeds instead is mixed and mastered more traditionally - you can in fact hear all the different instruments, and the cd won't blow my speakers up when I put the cd into my player. I really appreciate Tristania's effort to produce a honestly good-sounding album. The songs don't even clip, as songs in metal other albums - like Beyond the Veil - do... I really wish I could find other albums like Widow's Weeds.
If someone thinks that growling is a big no, then I suggest to reconsider. It took me many years to learn to tolerate growling, not to speak of shrieking or female growling. It just takes time, like everything else. By ignoring all the good music with growling vocals is like ignoring one of your basic tastes - bitter.
Besides that, I like the intro and outro parts - Preludum and Postludum - of the album, too. They allow me to relax and adjust to the forthcoming bliss of symphonic gothic metal, and afterwards give me time to realize, that it is over again.