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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the Millenium (so far)
Just when I thought I'd heard it all (having started listening to rock in the early 70's) I was pleasantly shocked when my nephew lent me this cd. The sound is stunning,the songwriting is powerful but unlimited in scope, the female singer has a beautiful voice and the overal impression is of a huge cinematic soundscape for some sci-fi blockbuster.

The tracks...
Published on 5 Jun 2009 by Fergal Woods

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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad, but it's not Nightwish
Dark Passion Play is certainly not a bad album. However it does not sound like Nightwish. This has nothing to do with Annette, the new vocalist. I really like her voice, in fact there are times when she sounds just like Tarja's pop voice. The problem with this album is the songwriting. I think Tuomas is going through the motions at times. Granted, most of the choruses are...
Published on 15 Dec 2007 by Mr. N. Cook


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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the Millenium (so far), 5 Jun 2009
By 
Fergal Woods "Axe Victim" (Leitrim, Ireland) - See all my reviews
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Just when I thought I'd heard it all (having started listening to rock in the early 70's) I was pleasantly shocked when my nephew lent me this cd. The sound is stunning,the songwriting is powerful but unlimited in scope, the female singer has a beautiful voice and the overal impression is of a huge cinematic soundscape for some sci-fi blockbuster.

The tracks range from very heavy to catchy pop to acoustic folk and much of the sound's colour comes from brilliant orchestration and excellent use of large choral forces. It's around 75 minutes long but doesn't feel like that and is chock full of highlights. Their new vocalist Anette delivers 2 great ballads (Eva and Meadows of Heaven) where the music builds towards powerful climaxes, and despite the unwarranted criticism from some reviewers I prefer her vocals to her predecessor Tarja. Tarja could not have sang the commercial "Amaranth" or "The Heart I Once Owned" anything like as well. "Sahara" is another massive wall of sound which has shades of Sabbath's "Seventh Star" about it. Marco shows off his incredible range on a couple of tracks, and these two combined really show up how monotonous the male-female vocalists in Lacuna Coil are.

One of the highlights for me was hearing Troy Donockly (Iona) contributing uileann pipes to 2 or 3 tracks. The pipes (and low whistle combined with fiddle) add a delicious Celtic flavour to an already abundant panorama of sounds. The album's opening epic "Poet and the Pendulum" may be somewhat self-indulgent on Tuomas' part, but in the central passage blastbeat drums, riffing guitar and matching orchestral interplay produce one of the most jaw-droppingly powerful sequence of music I've ever heard. Every rock fan should at least hear this album. The last album to have the same sort of shattering effect on me was the debut by Montrose in 1973 !

The bonus disc in this special edition contains the orchestral backing tracks which are worthwhile and only a couple of quid dearer than the standard album.

I own over 3,000 cds and this goes straight into the Top 12 ! BUY !
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No Tarja...Still awesome Nightwish!!!, 6 Feb 2009
By 
Mr. S. Lewis (Saltash, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Dark Passion Play (Audio CD)
After the departure of Tarja, many people had written Nightwish off as they thought that they could never be the same without her. They were right, but who said change is a bad thing? I really like new singer Anette Olzon as she has a lot of charisma and, dare I say it, is extremely beautiful. This album is a fanstastic from start to finish and is most definatley my favourite Nightwish album. I'll do a track by track run through:

The Poet and The Pendulum - The longest song that Nightwish has ever written. This is my favourite ever Nightwish song as it has fantastic vocals, keys and drumming. Every part of this song is perfect. 10/10

Bye Bye Beautiful - After TPATP, this song had a lot to live up to, and I think that it does! This song features a lot of Marco's voice and deals with the issues surrounding Tarja's departure. 8/10

Amaranth - This was the single from the album. It is much poppier than other Nightwish songs but is still great. It is extremely catchy and well merits it's place on the album. 8/10

Cadance of Her Last Breath - In my opinion, this is one of the weakest songs on the album, but it is still a great song, just not as good compared to the other great songs. 7/10

Master Passion Greed - This is the first of two songs on the album that just feature Marco's voice. If you are familiar with his other band, Tarot, then you will probably enjoy this. Features great riffs and vocals. 8/10

Eva - A ballad, but a really good one. It really shows off Anette's beautiful voice and the softer side of Nightwish. 8/10

Sahara - A very grinding song, probably one of the heaviest songs that Nightwish have ever done. It has epic keyboard and choir work that really compliments the heavy riffs. 8/10

Whoever Brings the Night - Emppu's contribution. And I must say that it's not up to his usual standard! This is probably my least favourite track on the whole album. 6/10

For the Heart I Once Had - Another weakish track. It tries to be to poppy, but it's listenble to. 6/10

The Islander - An acoustic ballad written and sung by Marco. This is a fantastic song with beautiful parts added by Troy Donockley. 9/10

Last of the Wilds - Another sing to feature Troy Donockley. It's an instrumental that would not seem out of place on a Mostly Autumn album. A folkier side of Nightwish but still nice and heavy! 7/10

7 Days to the Wolves - The last of Marco's efforts. This is probably my second favourite song on the album. It has pounding drums and a sing-a-long, anthemic chorus. 9/10

Meadows of Heaven - This is a really orchestral ballad, an interesting but quite effective way of finishing of a fantastically heavy album. 8/10

Overall, this album is fantastic. Don't hesitate to buy this just 'cos it's not Tarja. DON'T BE SO NARROW MINDED!!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome album - but the variety of songs lifts it above its rivals, 15 Jan 2008
What everyone else has said before is definitley valid and i totally agree, but what struck me (as a first time buyer of a nightwish album) is the sheer diversity of the songs.

Having been a fan of 'within tmeptation' for a while now i decided to branch out into other similar bands. When i stumbled upon nightwish i decided to give them a go. Whereas 'within temptation' and other more well known bands of this genre tend to stick to the same old (and successful) formula of strong vocals and with your guitars and orchestral ensemble, nightwish have a strong variety that makes this album easily listen-to-able.
Where some songs such as 'Amaranth' sound alarmingly like a heavy metal version of the corrs (i know i wont win mnay friends with this comparison) whilst the lilting ballad that is 'the Islander' could easily have come from any Jordan or Tolkien novel.
Both these can then be contrasted to what (from reading other reviews) i suppose is traditional nightwish.

Overall this album succeeds where perhaps others (such as within temptation) don't do as well beacuse of the fact that after listening through the whole album, it does'nt all just seem to merge into one long song. In fact each song presented is refreshingly new.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Album I Have Ever Heard., 21 April 2009
By 
Matthew Hill (Bradford, England) - See all my reviews
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Before this album, I was not into Nightwish, although I did try, I just couldn't get into the lead vocals singing. After hearing this album however, I can now say that they are possibly my favourite band.
Here's a short review of each song based on my opinions:

The Poet and the Pendulum. 10/10 - As someone else has already said, the only way to describe this song is "epic".

Bye Bye Beautiful. 10/10 - Wow, just Wow.

Amaranth. 10/10 - The song that introduced me to this band. It's pure genius. The video is also worth a watch.

Cadence of Her Last Breath. 10/10 - This song is so catchy, love the vocals in the chorus especially.

Master Passion Greed. 7/10 - Worth a listen but not their best.

Eva. 9/10 - Beautifully sung. The lyrics are very moving.

Sahara. 8/10 - Good. heavy song, although I find not as catchy as some.

Whoever Brings the Night. 10/10 - The chorus is awesome, this song is definitely one of the best.

For the Heart I Once Had. 9/10 - A great song. Typical Dark Passion Play Track.

The Islander. 10/10 - Different, catchy, everything you would want in a Nightwish song. Must listen.

Last of the Wilds 8/10 - Instrumental. A nice and easy listen.

7 Days to the Wolves. 6/10 - In my opinion the weakest track on the song. Still above standards.

Meadows of Heaven. 9/10 - This song is extremely moving. Nightwish at their finest.

Overall I would rate the album 10/10, a must buy for all.

Matt
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45 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nightwish - Better than ever, 29 Sep 2007
By 
P. Korgan "Shas'O" (Finland) - See all my reviews
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There was a lot of talk about Nightwish when the band announced the departure of Tarja Turunen, the main vocalist. Some even said that Nightwish will be no more. Rumours and speculations were of biblical proportions about the new main vocalist and if Nightwish could ever produce their own kind of music ever again. Dark Passion Play - after two years of painful waiting and with a new lead, Anette, shows us that we, music lovers may rejoice once again.

Fans will immediately recognise the musical style of Nightwish, which hasn't changed a bit since the Once was released. Especially the fans of Ghost Love Score will be in heaven the minute the album begins. The Poet And The Pendulum is sheer awesomeness. The music, the choir, the orchestra. Everyone who has ever heard Nightwish before, will instantly recognise the musical style of Nightwish that separates the band from other metal bands out there.

Second track, Bye Bye Beautiful introduces more "classical" Nightwish approach with heavy guitar riffs and a beautiful parts with Anette and Marco. Yes, Marco is back, better than ever. Fans will especially enjoy the fifth track entitled Master Passion Greed. If you enjoyed some of Marco's vocals on Once, this album is definitely for you. Third, fourth and sixth tracks concentrate more on musical aspects and on Anette's performances - which are different to those of Tarja but are pure Nightwish nonetheless.

The lyrics on Dark Passion Play are once again more meaningful than they might sound. Mr. Holopainen has always said that while he writes new songs, the lyrics tend to draw heavy inspiration, amongst other things, from his personal life. One can easily read (or listen) between the lines his thoughts about Tarja's departure and general feelings of the band. While some of the songs may be less hearthbreaking than those on Wishmaster, Dark Passion Play is lyrically the most beautiful and meaningful of the Nightwish albums.

All in all, Dark Passion Play offers 13 tracks of pure and delicate Nightwish. There really isn't anything bad, Anette's vocals are excellent to say the least. There is no doubt that with a new lead singer and with excellent music Nightwish will dominate the charts and outsell their last album Once.

The Special Edition also offers a second disc, which is instrumental version of the Dark Passion Play. Those of us who appreciate the sheer awesomeness of the music alone can now enjoy to their hearth's content. To easily put it into one sentence: Nightwish has once again outdone itself, this album belongs to everyones musical collection.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Fantastic! As close to musical perfection as you can get., 26 Jan 2008
By 
Richard Roberts (Cheshire, England) - See all my reviews
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What can I say that hasn't already been said in the (positive) comments below me?

Their first album with Anette Olzen as lead has not disappointed. It was an extremely difficult task to find someone to replace Tarja (almost impossible). But they did it. Despite the fact Anette's vocals are very different, she slots into the band very nicely.

There isn't really a bad song on the album. I basically love all of it. Symphonic hard metal in places, but in others beautiful and full of emotion and diversity. Intense lyrics and in my opinion the music is unsurpassed by any band in the world today. I have to admit to some songs bringing tears to my eyes.

I would say the album mirrors 'Once' as there are similar tracks on a similar style album, but nevertheless it holds its own as a single piece of art embedded in history forever.

I won't dwell on each individual track as I'd be here forever. Amaranth the latest single has a wonderfully catchy chorus with Anette's layered vocals (it will be interesting to see how they do it live - got tickets!), a similar style song to 'Nemo' from 'Once'. 'Bye Bye Beautiful' is obviously a song for Tarja, 'Eva' is a gorgeous ballad, and 'Sahara' is a powerful song with almost an Eastern taste to it. I love 'The Islander', a kind of medieval folk song, but it really works. 'Last of the Wilds' is the only instrumental on the album, but I beleive the Platinum edition of the album has the same song with a Finnish title and lyrics, released as a special edition single. the song has a strong Irish flavour to it. The album finishes with two stupendous tracks '7 Days to the Wolves' and 'Meadows of Heaven'.

I love the album, I love the band for producing so much wonderful music and I love Anette for being herself and not attempting to be a second Tarja.

Brilliant.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Want to give this 3.75, 19 Nov 2007
By 
A. Lewall "music, books and movies, oh my!" (Newcastle-upon-Tyne, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Dark Passion Play (Audio CD)
A bit of a mix, this one. There turned out to be a disproportionate number of tracks that I can't stop myself from skipping past. They are not actually bad, just now't nor summat - Cadence, Meadows from Heaven. Amaranth irks me - I can't help it. It just seems manufactured to be a hit. Catchy, but affectedly so as if it is trying to pull a Nemo. Lyrically - Meadows from Heaven and For the Heart I Once Had are rather insipid, TPAP is 14 minutes of Tuomas' wangst, but there is a lot of classic Nightwish imagery (Sahara) that still appealed to me.

On to the big thing about this one: for me, the voice was a letdown. No, I'm not saying they should have kept Tarja (she seemed to lack passion on Once so I wasn't upset when she was fired), or even hired on another classical singer. But I prefer my metal fronted by a heavy voice that can match the music. No matter how loud and grand Tuomas' songs were, Tarja's voice could match it, as does Marco's. But with Anette, Nightwish have moved into the category of metal-fronted-by-light-vocals which isn't my cup of tea. Just personal preference is all.

That said, there's nothing wrong with Anette's voice. It's very sweet, emotional and technically profficient. But it just isn't epic or heavy itself which is what I like (she can belt loudly, but her sound is rather narrow). I do like her on Sahara, Whoever Brings, and 7 Days to the Wolves though - can't wait to hear those live as I've been told by friends in the US that live is where she shows her ability best. On 7 Days, you can also hear how well her voice meshes with Marco's.

Things I do like: Anette's emotion, Sahara - my favourite song as it is very old NW I think! Whoever Brings the Night - where I am most happiest with Anette's voice, the orchestrated passages in The Poet and the Pendulum, Marco's roar on Bye Bye Beautiful's rather pointed chorus. 7 Days to the Wolves.

I disagree with those who say it isn't Nightwish; I'd certainly recognise it as Tuomas' compositions if I heard it unannounced on the radio. Still very much their sound, but moved forward a bit. I just wish the material had been more consistent.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad, but it's not Nightwish, 15 Dec 2007
Dark Passion Play is certainly not a bad album. However it does not sound like Nightwish. This has nothing to do with Annette, the new vocalist. I really like her voice, in fact there are times when she sounds just like Tarja's pop voice. The problem with this album is the songwriting. I think Tuomas is going through the motions at times. Granted, most of the choruses are epic, catchy, pure greatness, just like the Nightwish of old. BUT the verses on this album are, for the most part, bland and boring. They almost all involve a simple chugging guitar and very little orchestration. What set Nightwish apart from all the other clones and female fronted goth bands was solid songs with great verses and choruses, and a fantastic vocalist. All that's missing here are the verses. Honestly they are utterly forgettable. Just listen to say,the verse from The Riddler from Oceanborn or End Of All Hope from Century Child and compare it to ANY verse on this album and the difference is immediately apparent.

Not a poor album, but it's only half great as you'll only remember half of each song.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Once was always gonna be impossible to follow, 3 Oct 2007
By 
Chris Read "Chris Read" (Northampton,UK) - See all my reviews
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Fantastic album .. great new singer ... but ....

Ive seen it before ... the music's still great .. the singing is still amazing .... but something is lacking

When a band member changes, then the creative inputs change ... and i dont believe the vocal melodies have the cutting edge they did on Once .... there is nothing to match Creek Mary's blood or Ghost Lost Score on here ... but its still brilliant

Im still happy with it tho and dont let me put you off .... but I do think the next album will be better when the new singer has had time to grow into the band ... and she will ... KsE had the same problem, but are now back to their best

Oh and the instrumental CD is just a brilliant brilliant idea ... its amazing how much u miss when listening to the lyrics
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EPIC, JUST EPIC!!!!, 27 Jun 2009
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This review is from: Dark Passion Play (Audio CD)
I'm a new Nightwish fan, especially after listening to this record indeed...It's AMAZING!!
First of all I loved the singles, especially the awesome Amaranth (beautiful and poetic the video too!) but the first long song is incredible too, called The Poet & the Pendulum, because it has an Opera-kind of epic inspiration in it, (it has reminded me of the powerful Wagner's sound...I know it seems crazy, but I've had this feeling, as if the musician would have sound today); of course filled with the usual "North-Europe Gothic Rock", plus classic heavy metal sound of the'80ies and spiced up with the new singer's fresh voice, who has replaced the great soprano Tarja...

I really respect and admire also the old singer, I know that she still has lots of fans, angry because she was "fired" from the band; but, despite the whole situation, this new cd is really excellent and with a brand new force in it, so I guess all worked out for the best solution...
All in all, purchase it 'cause they definitely rock!! Even the artwork is very beautiful, you will love this new side of them, because even with the new nice touch of singer Annette Olzon (plus the usual solid vocals by "viking"Marco Hietala), they are still, more than ever, our beloved Nightwish!!

(PS_Actually, nobody has really understood what exactly happened within the band, but having listened to Tuomas' talking in the old dvds...I've an idea that being the mastermind behind the entire project, from time to time he gets tired of someone or something, and for new artistic inspiration's purposes he likes to change, to move on, as to speak...
By the way, I felt in love with them listening to Phantom of the Opera & Wishmaster, through YouTube & movies' ost, but I've appreciated also their new wave ;-D)
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Dark Passion Play
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