Nightwish - Over The Hills And Far Away

Year of Release: 2001
Label: Spinefarm
Catalog Number: MCD SPI118CD
Format: CD
Total Time: 20:13:00

Nightwish - we all know them, we all love them (at least, I hope you do). And to tide us over between full-length releases they give us a combination studio/live disc, ala Iron Savior's Interlude.

For those who don't know Nightwish (all three of you), they play symphonic power metal ala Stratovarius, with a heavy dose of keys with clean and crunchy guitars. The difference between Nightwish and other "like" bands is that they are fronted by an operatic FEMALE vocalist, Tarja. And wow, what a voice. If you thought you could reach the heights of Timo Kotipelto (Stratovarius), Michael Kiske (old Helloween), or Andre Matos (ex-Angra), then guaranteed you won't be able to reach this lady's vocal elegance.

Firstly, to the four studio tracks. The opening title track is a Gary Moore cover. What is presented is fresh, original, and different (anything sung by Tarja is different). This is followed by the momentous "10th Man Down" - possibly the most complete song that the band has written. This track also features the death-y vocals of Wilska (who also performed on Oceanborn), who adds a dramatic grace to the song; especially when doubled up with Tarja. An exceptional chorus just adds to the powerful nature of this track. Third track is the ballad "Away" which is probably the weakest of the studio tracks. By no means bad, it adds a nice shade to the previous fast track. A re-recording of the classic Angels Fall First track "Astral Romance" completes the studio tracks, this time featuring Tony Kakko (Sonata Arctica). It's even better here.

The 6 live tracks vary depending on which version of the disc you have, but for the European release it includes: "The Kinslayer," "She Is My Sin," "Sacrament Of Wilderness," "Walking In The Air," "Beauty & the Beast," and "Wishmaster." The quality of these songs - taken originally from their live DVD From Wishes To Eternity - Live shows just how good this band performs as a whole. To finally hear Tarja actually pull off these songs live is a joy to hear. Her fellow musicians are no slouches either - they perform a tight and melodious set.

All-in-all Nightwish tide us over until next year when they will release their fourth disc. Worthy indeed.

Also released by Century Media (8212-2; timing: 50:25) and Drakkar (timing >50:25)

[This review originally appeared November 2002 at the ProgPower Online review site -ed.]

Over The Hills And Far Away (5:03) 10th Man Down (5:20) / Away (4:32) / Astral Romance (remake 2001) (5:18) / The Kinslayer (live) (4:12) / She Is My Sin (live) (4:45) / Sacrament Of Wilderness (live) (5:01) / Walking In The Air (live) (5:11) / Beauty & The Beast (6:40) (live) / Wishmaster (live) (5:03) / Deep Silent Complete (live)

Spinefarm edition: only tracks 1 - 4, CM version: 1 - 10, Drakkar version: 1 - 11 who also released version w/DVD

Tarja Turunen - vocals
Tuomas Holopainen - keys and piano; male voice (1)
Jukka Nevalainen - drums
Emmpu Vuorinen - guitars
Marco Hietala - bass and vocals


Wilskia - male voice (2)
Tony Kakko - male voice (1,4)

Angels Fall First (1997)
Oceanborn (1998)
Wishmaster (2000)
Wishmastour 2000 (2000)
Over The Hills And Far Away (ep) (2001)
From Wishes To Eternity (FI only) (2001) Century Child (2002)
Once (2004)
Tales From The Elvenpath (2004)
Bestwishes (2005)
Highest Hopes: The Best Of Nightwish (2005)
End Of An Era (2006)
Dark Passion Play (2007)
The Sound Of Nightwish Reborn (2008)
Made In Hong Kong (2009)
Imaginaerum (2011)
Walking In The Air: The Greatest Ballads (2011)
Imaginaerum: The Score (2012)
Showtime, Storytime (2013)
Endless Forms Most Beautiful (2015)
Vehicle Of Spirit (2016)
Decades (2018*)

From Wishes To Eternity (DVD/VID) (2001)
End Of Innocence (DVD) (2003)
End Of An Era (DVD) (2006)
Made In Hong Kong (DVD) (2009) Imaginaerum (DVD/BR) (2011)
Showtime, Storytime (DVD/BR) (2013)
Vehicle Of Spirit (DVD/BR) (2016)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin FI

Added: January 17th 2005
Reviewer: Gary Carson
Artist website:
Hits: 1041
Language: english


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