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Nightwish - Angels Fall First CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.50 | 155 ratings

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3 stars #34 Review

For an album that the band leader said was a demo, and it shows because i don't think that his singing was part of the plan (since he doesn't sing good at all), it is overall a really solid first album that has many of the tropes that the group is known for.

So, about me, what happened to the Steve Hackett reviews and why i'm reviewing Nightwish now? Well, i couldn't get into Steve Hackett so easily, while Voyage of the Acolyte is one of my favorite albums, the rest have some things that i like but not everything, so i decided to break my convention of reviewing everything from one artist and start reviewing what i want to review at the moment, that said i'll probably review a couple more from Nightwish and then do an "Steve Hackett: Revisited" with "Please Don't Touch". So... what about Nightwish? Well, it's a group that my mother has heard since the early 2000s and i realized that i have heard so much of them that i wanted to listen to their albums on their entireties for once and do a review of those, i really like the group but you'll have to find out why, so let's start with my first Nightwish review on the first Nightwish album.

1.- ElvenPath 8/10 This song is a heavy hitter, but then it becomes a little too repetitive, something normal for the 90s, but it still has more changes than anything else from the era, so already that extra-effort makes it much more approachable as a prog fan. As someone that plays the piano, i'm not really a fan of how those strings sound, but the fast part with the clavichord sound is really nice and its also a Nightwish staple. The biggest problem is that this song is too short and it could've used more from that small guitar solo.

2.- Beauty and the Beast 7/10 Boombastic intro that then dwelves into a nice little medieval sounding piano part that i enjoy a lot. While i'm not digging the male singing parts at all, Tuomas doesn't sing good, i can understand why he said that this album was a demo, because his singing is really awful. But on the plus side, the instrumental part at 4:48 is really nice. While the choir synth isn't very good, thankfully they had Tarja Turunen to rescue that part. I also would've made the instrumental part longer, it's really good and saves the rest of the song by a little.

3.- The Carpenter 3/10 Tuomas singing is awful, as previously stated, then the instrumental here is uninspired as well, clearly made for vocals, and since the vocal part is mostly done by Tuomas, then this is bad. The only saving part is the small solo near the end, that sounds like egiptian, with those synth flutes, but that doesn't save this overall boring song.

4.- Astral Romance 6/10 Has a really nice rythm going on from the start and it keeps increasing tension with every lyric that's passing, just really beautyful, but then it gets completely destroyed by Tuomas singing, all that built tension fades, but then they repeat the first act but with only instrumentals, and that's what the song should've been, atleast here in the album because the live versions are pretty nice since they don't have Tuomas singing... or they could've just let Tarja do that part in the album version. It is really frustrating to hear Tuomas sing specifically at that part, because otherwise, this theme would've been an instant classic, while it is, for the most part thanks to the concert versions, this album version is just a no from me.

5.- Angels Fall First 7/10 The title track is a nice little ballad, that has some really nice piano, guitar and flute chords that i like, the flute solo was really nice also, it eases the repetitivness of the song. A really nice song to appreciate Tarja's singing and natural instruments in general. I really dislike the ending though, like it reaches nothing, i don't think that it was really that difficult to finish the song either.

6.- Tutankhamen 5/10 This one really has the egiptian vibe going on, with all those flute sounds and armonic structures, it's ok, reminds me a lot of the previous songs. Supreme singing by Tarja, as you would expect, but the song aside from that has some interesting synth bits (reminds me of Moondance a little) and nothing else really, it's repetitive and mostly boring, it would've been better if this where a part from a bigger more developed song.

7.- Nymphomaniac Fantasia 8/10 That bass is aweosome, but as always the synth and voice take the cake, and this song really transports you into another place, has a nice flute solo that doesn't sound like a synth, nice non-flat drumming, overall a good song. What reduces the score here is the lenght, it's too short, the 90s synth sounds and the repetitive chords that try to make like an orchestral sound when it really wasn't needed when the guitar was doing the work.

8.- Know Why the Nightingale Sings 6/10 This album has some instances of flat drums accompained with interesting bits, and through the entirety of the album there are many chords that are repeated throught so far, i can hear an structure being used, that always culminates on a guitar and then a piano solo, both wich are very short and not the most interesting ones. In this song you have every trope of the album put together and despite that, it still makes an overall nice song, that gets quickly forgoten by everyone because it offers little interesting things and the ideas where already developed better on some of the previous songs, this song and the weakest of the previous ones show that this album was an structure test.

9.- Lappi (Lapland) 9/10 And this is the big end, on point and precise intro, then tense insteresting instrumental and build up, this song feels already different than all of the album, this is the ground where they explored the most, they where really trying to find their sound and succeeded. The thing is that not only they do show a nice piece of music here, but also some very refined play from part of every one, good choice of chords and an overall progressive structure that doesn't get boring or repetitive for the most part, i really like it.

Overall this album gets 66/100 wich grants this album with 3 stars.

FalconBleck | 3/5 |


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