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Sonata Arctica
Wolf And Raven (EP)
June 2001
Released: 2001, Spinefarm Records
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: EvilG

Yeah, I know this is only two songs long and that it’s not a full CD. However, after hearing it and wetting my pants, I had to write something about it. I have very, very high hopes for this young Finnish band and for their forthcoming album SILENCE (due out in Europe in July). WOLF AND RAVEN is an advance 2-song EP that the record label has put out ahead of the album to generate some hype for the full length. I was already still hyped from their awesome debut album ECLIPTICA that came out in 2000 and since then I’ve still kept that album near my CD player and in the car for over a year! The two songs on this EP are “Wolf And Raven” and “Peacemaker.” “Wolf And Raven” is a double kicking dream in the Stratovarius vein or not too far removed from “My Land” from their first CD. The vocals on this one are intense in a melodic metal way, perhaps more intense then anything vocalist Tony Kakko has done! There are also the backing vocals that you should listen for…something new and very cool for Sonata to include! “Peacemaker” is a mid-tempo track which is not as gripping but is still an awesome track. It begins with a short keyboard intro then goes into a slower chunky riff. The solo section sees the guitar and keyboard trade off but the song didn’t launch into an impressive frenzy of trading back and forth like they have on other songs. Although “Peacemaker” is a great track it is not as good as the godly “Wolf And Raven” – thus the reason for me giving the EP a 4.5/5 as opposed to 5/5. I hope that SILENCE is for the most part made up of speedy songs like “Wolf And Raven” – if so I will have another CD from this band that I can crank and play for the next 1.5 years without ever getting sick of. The release date for SILENCE is July the 16th (Europe)….bring it on!!!!!!

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