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Nightwish Endless Forms Most Beautiful album cover
3.69 | 152 ratings | 4 reviews | 23% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2015

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Shudder Before the Beautiful (6:29)
2. Weak Fantasy (5:25)
3. Elan (4:44)
4. Yours Is an Empty Hope (5:39)
5. Our Decades in the Sun (6:39)
6. My Walden (4:39)
7. Endless Forms Most Beautiful (5:08)
8. Edema Ruh (5:16)
9. Alpenglow (4:49)
10. The Eyes of Sharbat Gula (6:04)
11. The Greatest Show on Earth (23:58) :
- Chapter I) Four Point Six
- Chapter II) Life
- Chapter III) The Toolmaker
- Chapter IV) The Understanding
- Chapter V) Sea-Worn Driftwood

Total Time 78:50

Line-up / Musicians

- Floor Jansen / vocals
- Emppu Vuorinen / guitars
- Tuomas Holopainen / keyboards, piano, producer
- Marco Hietala / bass, acoustic guitar, vocals

- Kai Hahto / drums
- Petri Alanko / synths, programming, co-producer & mixing
- Troy Donockley / uilleann pipes, low whistle, bodhrŠn, bouzouki, vocals
- The Young Musicians London / chorus children vocals
- Lynda Richardson / choirmistress
- The Metro Voices / chorus vocals
- Jenny O'Grady / choirmistress
- Orchestra / strings & winds
- Pip Williams / vocals & orchestral arrangements, orchestrations & direction
- James Shearman / choirs & orchestra conductor
- Jussi Tegelman / soundscapes (11)
- Paul Clarvis / ethnic percussion
- Stephen Henderson / timpani, ethnic percussion
- Richard Dawkins / speech (1,10)
- Francesco Lupica / ? (11)

Releases information

Artwork: Gina & Janne Pitkšnen

CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 3464-2 (2015, Europe)
2CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 3464-0 (2015, Europe) Bonus disc with instrumental versions - Digibook
3CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 3464-4 (2015, Europe) Bonus CD w/ instrumental versions plus bonus CD w/ orchestral versions (except tracks #6 & 8) - Earbook edition

2LP Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 3464-1 (2015, Europe)

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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NIGHTWISH Endless Forms Most Beautiful ratings distribution

(152 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(23%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(31%)
Good, but non-essential (26%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (10%)

NIGHTWISH Endless Forms Most Beautiful reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kenethlevine
4 stars With prog metal groups having been added to progarchives faster than food trucks in an abandoned lot, it's somewhat surprising that the latest offering from one of the least metallic, most progressive and most internationally successful has only received reviews from a few odd fanpeople immediately upon release. With a concept as grandiose as anything from the 1970s but a great deal more penetrable, not a growl in sight, and only occasional raucous riffs dotting the mostly symphonic and occasionally Celtic backdrop, this 2015 issue picks up where the superb "Imaginaerum" left off. The apparently contentious split with former lead singer Annette Olson has occasioned the ascent of the equally expressive Floor Jansen for another engrossing romp.

The subject is Darwin's theory of evolution and the title is a quote from "The Origin of Species", with the NIGHTWISH concept focusing on how lucky we are to be alive, given that the likelihood of our ever being conceived is infinitesimally small. My intellectual problem with this is the same as stating that if everything is great then nothing is great. Everybody we meet is as equally fortunate. Now, if we could make the acquaintance of those who were never squeezed into existence that would be another matter. In any case, Nightwish does justice to the bombastic theme from the outset with "Shudder Before the Beautiful, and the sequence beginning with with the mostly gentle "Our Decades in the Sun" and ending with the dazzling "The Eyes of Sherbat Gula" is uniformly ravishing. The most identifiable aspects of their sound apart from the vocals would be the synthesized and bona fide orchestrations, the gallivanting melodies, and the frequent interjections of pipes and flutes from one Troy Donockley. The gravitas of occasional narrator Richard Dawkins, a renowned author and biologist, rounds out the cast.

While our favourite prog is often challenging and intellectually and emotionally satisfying, it's rarely this entertaining as well. It might even bring a lump to your throat.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars In between this 2015 album and the previous studio release, 2011's 'Imaginaerum' it is safe to say the band had been through some struggles (seek out the excellent tour documentary on YouTube detailing what happened). Due to singer Anette Olzon being hospitalized immediately before a show in Denver, the band went ahead with Alissa White- Gluz and Elize Ryd (who were part of support band Kamelot) taking on the role, using printed lyrics and a revised setlist. This in turn led to Floor Jansen being invited in for the rest of the tour. Late in 2013 it was announced that Jansen would be the full-time replacement for Olzen, and the band also made Troy Donockley a permanent member (he had already been touring with the band for five years at this point). However, before they went into the studio to record the new album it was announced that founding member and drummer Jukka Nevalainen would not be involved due serious insomnia (he has since left the band as a musical member although to this day he is still heavily involved in taking care of band-related business), and he would be replaced by Kai Hahto (Wintersun).

So there had been a lot going on in the band, but they had weathered issues prior to this, particularly with the loss of original singer Tarja Turunen, so like many I was intrigued to hear this album. I happened to see Nightwish on the tour with Floor (who I had always admired with After Forever) and thought the band had connected really well together, so was looking forward to this. Jansen is a good replacement for Olzon, as while she can sing that material well, her voice is also suited to the earlier material of Turunen, and I expected to see something of a return to the sort of material with which Nightwish made their name. When Marco Hietala joined the band in 2001, he made a massive impact as it gave the band a second really strong songwriter and someone who could also take centre stage as lead singer, so I had very expectations indeed.

However, apart from a few standouts, what we have here to my ears is a band who are really going through the motions. It has everything that one expects from Nightwish, but somehow muted. It is bombastic and over the top, yet without the soul and passion I expect. Delicate numbers such as "Our Decades In the Sun" stand out as they are a delight, an oasis of light in a fairly dark and parched atmosphere. But, it's not a bad album, it is still much better than many bands will ever hope to release, it is just I expected more from a band who had been through so much, and I firmly expected them to take a step up from 'Imaginaerum', which I loved, yet somehow they have not managed that.

Anyone who enjoys symphonic metal is going to love this, but for me while it is an excellent album, and one which I am sure I will return to, it doesn't deliver as I expected it to.

Latest members reviews

5 stars The first album with Floor Jansen ex after Forever. I listen an album solid, powerful, amazing production, melodic, heavier, excellent balance, an inspired Toumas, and an amazing Floor, the new Queen of Prog Metal. Much better than it's predecesores. My favourites songs: Weak Fantasy, Shudder Be ... (read more)

Report this review (#1407015) | Posted by watcherofthesky | Friday, May 1, 2015 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Just Like "Room V" by Shadow Gallery and "Scenes from a Memory" by Dream Theater this CD has introduced me to a new progressive metal band. And just like those two CD's I mentioned ? it has had a massive impact on me. I haven't heard any of the back catalogue ? so it should be fun sampling som ... (read more)

Report this review (#1403409) | Posted by M27Barney | Friday, April 24, 2015 | Review Permanlink

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