I bought this album a few years ago based on the song Christmas Eve(Sarajevo 12/24) that I first heard on The Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s Christmas Eve and other Stories album. I listened to the album a couple of times, liked a few songs but thought it was’nt anything special. Well after going to see TSO live I thought I dig this one out and listen to where the inspiration for TSO came from. Well I’ve been listening to this album pretty much continuously now, for the last few weeks. Maybe I just didn’t listen close enough the first time, but now I think this is by far one of the best concept albums ever recorded. The songs take you on a journey and tell the story of how war can change you and your perception of the world. Some reviewers think this is a dark album, and a downer, I don’t agree. I think it has all the elements of a great story. The exuberance of ‘This is the Time’ that is changed by pettiness and greed (I am), and shattered by war (This Isn’t what We Meant, Dead Winter Dead, One Child) only to come to the realization that you don’t have to be a follower, you can stand up for your own belief’s, and overcome prejudice and hate (Not What You See). Also the combination of Classical influences mixed with the best progressive metal you’ll hear, this side of Dream Theater, are done flawlessly.(I hope this lineup gets back together for a future album) The music sets the tone for the songs, even without the lyrics which are very strong and thought provoking on their own. I would highly recommend this album to anyone who likes to be moved by music as well as entertained. A great effort all around.