|All Artists: Wintersun|
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Nuclear Blast Americ
Release Date: 10/5/2004
Genres: Pop, Rock, Metal
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 727361122126, 5051083016049, 829410379052
Genres: Pop, Rock, Metal
Listen to Samples
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A Complete Surprise
Igar The Terrible | Canada | 02/18/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was recomended this album/band from a friend, who said that I should definetly pick it up if I could find it. It is impossibly hard to find records from "obscure" metal bands where I live, also known as 85% of bands from outside North america. So one day while I was shuffiling through the Metal CDs at my local Record store, to my utter surprise, I found this. since I had a pocket full of recently made cash I felt I had to buy something, so not finding anything else that I was interested in, I grabbed this one. I had not heard any songs from the record, and I hadn't listened to Ensiferum or Norther, although I did hear good things. To say the least I was completely floored by just how good this album is! Wintersun is in no way a rip-off of Ensiferum, or any other band for that matter. Jari Maenpaa has made a very unique melodic death/power/folk metal blend here. to go off the topic of music for a second, I also really liked the artwork on the cover and in the booklet, it has a very cool frost-like effect on the pages where the lyrics are. At first Listen Wintersun seems to be a CoB/Kalmah/Norther rip off, but about half way through the Record you will realise that Wintersun is so much more then the aforementioned bands. So If your a fan of the melodic death metal scene, you have to listen to this. It breathes life into a genre that is getting more then a wee bit stale.
If you managed to read this entire review, and didn't feel like kicking me in the teeth after doing so, or found it remotely interesting, appealing, or helpful please take a second out of your busy day to press the "yes" button next to "Was this review helpful to you?"
-Igar the Terrible"
Must-have for fans of melodic metal
Greg Schreiter | Rochester, Minnesota United States | 07/03/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wow. Just Wow. This is a brilliant CD, for several reasons. This cd contains some of the best song lyrics (and associated vocal performances) I have ever heard. You can tell that Wintersun are playing right from the soul! Jari's voice is simply AMAZING here, because he spectacular at both regular singing, and harsh growling (listen to a sample song- his growl voice is amazingly understandable and clear, and his tenor voice is beautiful). One peculiar thing that I noticed is that each song gets progressively longer than the one before it. Now for the individual song ratings:
Beyond the dark sun- (2:40)
This is the song that got me interested in the band. I had received the "Monsters of metal" nuclear blast video collection as a gift, and this song was on the 3rd volume dvd. I thought to myself that this band had extreme potential (and this was a short song, too; only 2:40) so I had to check out the rest of their material. There is a nice breakdown/tempo change at 1:20, and the lyrics are perfect for an introductory song. (10/10)
Winter Madness- (5:08)
This song starts out with furious blastbeats on the drums, with melodic guitars. Soon, Jari introduces you to his Tenor singing (absolutely great), and this makes you say "wow." The drums are relentless and insanely good here, as the drummer does blastbeats for over half of the (5:08) song. Some really fantastic lyrics here: "My hands are frozen, my mind is at the edge of madness; Oh how many nights and days, I've been lost in this land of sadness..." The lyrics are the thing that REALLY impressed me about wintersun- I can't reiterate enough how good they are. Read some of them on the internet, because they are truly impressive. This song also contains the album's best guitar solo, and because of these aforementioned things, I would say this is one of the best songs on the CD. (10/10)
Sleeping Stars- (5:41)
This song slows the tempo way down to an almost dream-like tempo. For some reason, I am compelled to say it was too abrupt of a tempo change, as it interrupts the onslaught of songs that is to follow. Nevertheless, the song is very good once it gets going. Good lyrics as usual, competent drumming and guitar playing, it was just the abrupt tempo change that was bugging me. (8/10)
Battle Against Time- (7:02)
Again, we get a furious blastbeat intro. Good tempo change at (1:56) that picks up the pace, and thrusts you right into the main part of the song. I feel that this song is a tad overlong though (at 7:02- not that you can't have songs this long in the genre, as you will see below, it's just that this song doesn't seem musically diverse enough). (9/10)
Death and the Healing- (7:12)
Another slower song, but this one is flawless. Clean singing to start out the song, with a cool melodic beat for the guitars. On almost all the songs, there are keyboards in the background to give the songs additional texture, and in this song they work really well. Great guitar solos in this song, too! The guitars work really well with the keyboards. You can hear the bass in all of Wintersun's songs, and in this one especially, the bass work is exceptional. Great drum work rounds out this perfect song. (10/10)
This song still blows my mind, even after listening to it well over 100 times. The song starts out with furious double-bass work for the drums, complex melodic riffs for the guitars, and great bass lines. The use of keyboards in this song is absolutely perfect - the keyboards accentuate, but never become a leading element. This song is very fast, and after a rhythm change at (0:46), it seems even faster. This song is very complex musically, as there are many breakdowns, and five distinct segments to the lyrics. This song has some of the best song lyrics I have ever heard. Here is a sample:
"But I will make the time run backwards and
I'll make the stars shine again
I will light up the sky to a bright, crimson nights
... And they'll shine together forever
With brilliant silver colours they'll shine, forever!"
When you put these lyrics into the context of the song, they are wholly moving and unbelievable and great. Every element of this song is truly perfect, and that makes it the best song on the album by far. (7:53) of musical perfection! (10/10)
Beautiful Death- (8:15)
This is a great song to bang your head to, if you are in to that sort of thing. Crunchy guitars and bass play a chugging rhythm at the start, while the drums perfectly accentuate things. Jari belts out the central lyric to this song: "'Cause life is just a beautiful death!" Great guitar solo at (4:45) goes on for 40 seconds, and there are blastbeats abound for the drums. The drumming on this album is truly something to be admired (I wish I could find a session drummer like Kai). The ending segment of this song starts at (6:54) with beautiful operatic singing. The last segment also features keyboards and the light playing of the guitar, to create a beautiful effect. It is another great one by Wintersun! (10/10)
Sadness and Hate - (10:15)
This is the longest song on the disc. The introduction of the song is very atmospheric, as is much of the song. It is slower than the other songs, which makes for a suitable last song. Competent drum work and guitars; Wintersun retain the folk vibe they are known for in this song. Jari's great tenor singing round out this song. (9/10)
Based on the superb quality of this CD, I am simply dumbfounded that Wintersun have not received more recognition. I would recommend this disc to people who like melodic death metal and/or any kind of folk metal (and fans of Ensiferum for obvious reasons). The production is perfect- no element of the music becomes too leading, it just blends together perfectly. Wintersun is the brainchild of Jari Mäenpää, and he deserves ALL of the credit for putting this album together- he played every instrument on the recording, save for drums (which were played by a fantastic session drummer). He also did all of the producing for this album. I look forward to Wintersun's new (2006) CD with great expectations; now that they have a full band, it will be interesting to see what they sound like. Hopefully they can iron out the minor flaws (after all, it was their debut record) and take their music to the next level."
Wintersun - Wintersun
Richard Terry | Denver, CO United States | 08/08/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wintersun started as Jari Mäenpää, the former frontman of Ensiferum, left the band to pursue his musical vision of Wintersun. Many fans, including myself, mourned the loss of Jari from Ensiferum, but after listening to this beautiful debut release, I can only be joyful in Jari's brilliance at making wonderful melodic northern metal.
'Beyond the Dark Sun' is a short, but fast opener. Jari's screams are very good here and throughout the album. 'Sleeping Stars' is a great melodic viking-esque song with supurb guitar playing. 'Battle Against Time' will take the listener away to the frozen winters of northern Finland. 'Death and the Healing' is a beautiful song, more of a balland that sounds a lot like an Iron Maiden song with the leads. The closer, 'Sadness and Hate' is my favorite song on the album. Do not let this 10 minute song fool you. It is not boring and has many viking elements as Jari's vocals truly shine.
Many fans might have envisioned Wintersun's music similar to Ensiferum. This is not the case at all. Personally, I would have not minded another viking/folk metal album, but Jari Mäenpää took his vision to viking/melodic metal with hints of black metal. This debut album was a very high point of 2004, and pathos is used well in Wintersun's compositions. Jari Mäenpää is currently in the studio, and a new album will be in our hands in the near future. This is what beautiful northern music sounds like. \M/