Next review: » Sonata Arctica - For the Sake of Revenge
Released: 1999, EvilG
By the gods...why wasn't I informed by the high priestess of power metal about this band earlier?!?! WHY!!! Sonata Arctica are a blessing for anyone into POWER METAL! Fans of Stratovarius and the like had better be on the lookout for this CD. Like Stratovarius, Sonata Arctica are from Finland, and like Stratovarius, the key ingredient is melody. Don't worry though, although the band falls into the same category as Strato, they are not a clone band. The name "Sonata Arctica" suits them perfectly. The Sonata part because of the "symphony/opus/concerto" elements and the Arctica because they live in the far north of Finland.
Describing the music is easy - it's fast, lots of melody, plenty double kicks, high godly vocals and a lot of talent! The songs are really driven by the drums and guitar and although the keys are prominent they don't overpower the guitars. The leads are not quite a Timo or Yngwie but hey, not many are in that class! It took me all of the first 5 seconds of the first track to realize that this was gonna be a great CD. All the tracks on on the CD are great. "Blank File" - the opener, is a storm-bringer that will grab you immediately! Even the semi-ballad "Letter To Dana" is gripping, the vocals really reach up to the higher registers on this one. Others kickers include "Commandment" which features some very nice keyboard parts as does "Unopened" with a harpsichord effect. "Destruction Preventer" is also one of the stronger (and upbeat) tracks - I like the vocal lines on this one a lot and the dueling of guitar and keyboard solos in this one is mind-blowing! Besides the amazing music, you will also be very surprised to learn that these guys are quite young. For the recording of this CD, vocalist Tony Kakko was 24, guitarist Jani Liimatainen - 18, bassist Janne Kivilahti - 19 and drummer Tommy Portimo a mere 17! More proof that the youth of today are carrying on the flame of TRUE metal!!
I'm not gonna ramble on about this CD because any fan of power metal does not need to read anything more about it - just pick up the CD! More info on this VERY promising band can be found at the official Sonata Arctica Home Page.
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