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Nightwish: Made in Hong Kong (and in Various Other Places)

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(14 Reviews)

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  • NOTE–I have not yet heard the whole album, and I haven’t seen any of the DVD. This is sort of a first impression review aimed at people familiar with the band.

    Nightwish fans–we’re being cheated. Severely. This 11-track album features 9 live songs (yep, that’s it), 1 B-side and a demo. What kind of live album is this for a band that has released something like 6 albums? Not ONE Tarja-era song is included, and I can’t for the life of me figure out why. Annette sounds fantastic live (much better than she did on the album, in my opinion) and she definitely performs the songs on stage, so why can’t we hear them? And way to open with “Bye Bye Beautiful,” a very catchy song that should have been titled “F**k You Tarja You Greedy Argentine-Marrying B*tch of a Frontwoman Who Apparently Didn’t Realize That Tuomas Loved You More Than Life Itself And Fired You Because You Didn’t Reciprocate.” Well, it is a little long, admittedly.

    Anyway, back to being serious. The songs sound great–they’re incredibly heavy so you can bang your head. However, if you take issue with excessive playback then this album will give you fits. Most of the orchestra parts are used, along with the choirs and backing vocals. You’ll hear two Annettes at once! I do want to reiterate that Annette’s voice on this album is great. I know a lot of Nightwish fans haven’t taken to her yet, but this just might help. She’s also very good with the crowd, which is a definite plus. She does need a little help with her wardrobe though, because she looks like Avril Lavigne raided Hot Topic.

    The demo track at the end is “Cadence of Her Last Breath,” one of my favorite songs on the album, but here it’s sung by Marco Hietala and not Annette. (Like the demo version of “Amaranth” on Dark Passion Play.) Marco has a great voice, and his band Tarot sounds fabulous, but on this demo he sounds INCREDIBLY overwrought. He usually does when performing in Nightwish–his vocals in the live songs are the same way. (“Phantom of the Opera” anyone?) No big deal I guess, because the music is pretty overwrought too but it does get wearisome.

    We’re screwed yet again on the DVD. It features a documentary and 3 videos. Ladies and gentleman, the documentary is 37 minutes long. That’s it. Would it have been TOO hard to actually give us, oh, maybe AN ACTUAL LIVE CONCERT? Apparently. Or maybe we could have gotten videos that aren’t splashed all over the internet. Apparently not. Roadrunner is awfully stingy when it comes to things like this. On Within Temptation’s “Black Symphony” you get the whole show on DVD, half a show on CD. Here you get half a show on CD and nothing on DVD. Roadrunner, please just give us the whole thing at once. And don’t pull your usual stunt by releasing some special edition a year from now and making us buy the album yet again just to have something we should have gotten in the first place, mmkay?

    All in all, the CD is definitely worth buying even if the track list is miniscule, and the DVD doesn’t really cost anything so what the heck. Still, if you’re a true Nightwish fan this is liable to leave you a teensy bit disappointed.

    Posted on November 21, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • So this is a short review from someone who has listen to and seen the whole thing.

    The live stuff sounds awesome. Oh, and it’s 8 live songs. Not 9, like this other review says. I really wish there was some older songs on here, but it’s still rockin. The B-side stuff is pretty good aswell. “Escapist” and “While Your Lips Are Still Red ” are great songs that I’ve wanted to have on a disc for a while now. The demo version of “Cadence of Her Last Breath” has a pretty interesnting sound with Marco on vocals. Of course, being a demo, it’s not really up to par with the other stuff sound wise. But it’s still cool.

    The DVD is a little on the short side, but not bad at all. It talks about how things have been going with Anette and how the Dark Passion Play tour has been overall. Quite a few interviews, both serious and funny. Some real amazing “Drunken Uno” games are played. I found myself laughing quite a bit. Then there are the music videos. Which, well… they’re just music videos.

    Overall it’s a pretty good buy if you really dig the new stuff, any live stuff, or just want to see some good stuff about the band. I have hopes that this will hold me over for a while. I can’t wait for these folks to release a new album

    Posted on November 21, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I have not gotten to the DVD yet since I am listening at work. The Disc is good, the live material is all top notch, however I feel a little flat that some of the older material that they have been playing on the tour is not included. Annette absolutely owns “Everdream” and I wish it had been on this Disc. HINT: To this Band and all Bands if you put out Live releases that don’t include the actual content of your shows, and the songs that fans like to hear if they can’t get them from you they WILL get somewhere.

    Posted on November 21, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • A reviewer said that the lack of older material on this new live CD was due to the fact that the new singer couldn’t handle the older songs, well I happen to have 6 full length live Nightwish concert videos featuring Anette Olzon, that say otherwise, in fact, I’ll go as far as saying that she not only nails the older songs, but in several cases, sounds better then Tarja does live (or in studio for that matter). I’d say the reason for the lack of older material on this new CD is that they where concentrating on songs from the new album in an attempt to move forward.

    Another thing that strikes me is how happy Anette looks while singing the classic songs, as opposed to Tarja’s performance on the, End of an Era live DVD, where she looks like she’s just doing a job (which is apparently all that Nightwish had become to her, a job).

    And for all of the boo-hooers out there pining for Tarja, there’s a post Nightwish press conference with Tarja (which you can find on You Tube with subtitles) where she states that she had told the Nightwish guys that she was going to leave the band to pursue a solo career after the next album (which would have been the Dark Passion Play album) which means that she had no intention of continuing on with the band in the future, so all the band did was fire her before she quit, so that they could find a replacement and move on since she no longer considered the future of the band a priority.

    So I think that fans should give Anette Olzon a chance, because she has a beautiful voice, which is giving Nightwish a new palette of sound to play with, and should also keep in mind that she’s a innocent bystander in Tarja’s departure from the band, having not been hired till well after Tarja was gone

    P.S. I’m a new fan, having only come upon Nightwish about 2 months ago, and the first song I heard was, Wish I Had An Angel, which wet my appetite, but it was hearing the song, Amaranth that really blew me away and hooked me, and now I can’t get enough of them >^..^<

    Posted on November 21, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I’m grateful for a Nightwish live release representing the Annette-fronted version of the band, but this could have been better. It’s a bit skimpy. There are 8 live tracks from the Dark Passion Play tour, 2 B-sides and a demo. The live tracks are great. They sound excellent and the band rocks hard. Don’t expect a whole lot of variation from the album versions though. Of course, there are no songs from the Tarja albums. If that’s what you’re looking for, there is a wonderful live release called End of an Era that is well worth checking out. This disc is a bit short. Not to mention the glaring omission of Meadows of Heaven, my favorite song from Dark Passion Play. The DVD is fluff. A short documentary about the tour and three music videos. I hate these CD/DVD combos. The DVD content is rarely worthwile and only serves to jack up the price as is the case here.

    So although the content is good, this just isn’t a very good value. I would like to have seen a complete live show. The CD is only 66 minutes long. They could have dropped the three “bonus” tracks and included probably 4 or 5 more live tracks. And dropped the DVD entirely. But that’s record companies for you. For live Nightwish, End of an Era is certainly the way to go.

    Posted on November 20, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now