In 2004, I was introduced to a band that would change my life in some ways. I became exposed to metal music that wasn’t back in the 80’s, like Judas Priest, Megadeath, etc. This was a band that included choirs, orchestras, a classical singer and one epic cinematic feel. The song “Nemo” was the beginning of a new era for me: Nightwish.
Formed in Finland in 1996 by keyboard player Tuomas Holopainen, this symphonic band comprised of: Tuomas, singer Tarja Turunen, guitar player Empuu Vuorinen and Jukka Nevalainen (who would come a year later). Other people would leave their footprints on the almost 20 year journey of this band: Sami Vaska (bass), Marco Hietala (bass and current member), Anette Olzon (singer), Kai Hato (current drummer), Troy Donockley (pipes/percussion) and Floor Jansen (current singer).
Why do I love this band? Well it boils down to few reasons: they write their own material (music/lyrics, the works), cool messages in their lyrics (love of parents, storytelling, the wilds, lost love, nature…the list is large), beautiful choir and orchestral arrangements and of course, three amazing singers that have brought different vocal styles to this iconic metal band. It’s rare these days when songs played on the radio are not auto tuned, written by a lyricist and not about three or four topics.
This band always brings new ideas, arrangements, art and atmosphere to each album. They change with the times and their own experiences. While they primarily sing in English, their Finnish songs are fantastic and show their roots. They also do a couple fun covers too: Walking in the Air, Over the Hills and Far Away and Phantom of the Opera.
I’ve had the pleasure of seeing them live three times in 2008, 2012 and 2015. They offer fun fan interactions, acoustic versions of their songs and full of energy. They get you smiling, singing along and full of boundless energy. I just to get to one of the shows that offers the pyrotechnics…open air concerts get all the fun.
Here’s a few of their videos to give you an idea of what their like. If you’re curious about symphonic metal, or have heard this band’s name, give them a listen. Comment down below what you think of their music, if you’ve seen them live or anything else about this great band!
Videos were pulled from NightwishVEVO YouTube channel