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Imaginaerum Opinions

Discussion in 'Nightwish (unofficial)' started by Tramz, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    I've been lucky enough to get some early listens to Imaginaerum. My overall impressions are good, but it will take people a few listens and some of it will absolutely divide the community.

    For starters, the album improves as you go deeper along. But not thinking much of Taikatalvi or Storytime, i have to say that it first starts to pick up with Ghost River. Not my favorite song on the album, but it borrows some traditional notes and i don't consider it to be bad. Then we move on to one of the most interesting songs on Imaginaerum: "Slow, Love, Slow". This is going to be highly controversial. I consider this to be a very artistic song. It touches on jazzy elements and is an interesting direction for Nightwish. So many people are going to want to instantly dismiss it because it isn't what they expect. This, in my opinion, would be a mistake. Good art is good art and we should never limit the growth of our favorite artists. Consider this when you reach Slow, Love Slow or you might dismiss what might be one of the best songs on the album.

    Next we move on to something much more traditional that will appeal to the bulk of fans: "I Want My Tears Back" is a fairly traditional folk/power song. Then we have Scaretale. When this song first picks up, you are reminded of the best of Nightwish. I was truly enjoying myself on first listen. As the song moves along, I figured this for a live favorite to be. It still might be, but the song definitely gets stranger as it moves along. It's vocal styling is appropriate given the name and concept. At first, I thought the next song, Arabesque was just another part of Scaretale, but it's a short piece all it's own. i found myself very much enjoying this piece with it's strong/primal percussion segments.

    Following Arabesque is Turn Loose The Mermaids. It's a tranquil folk ballad. I can't say it's bad. It has good elements in it. I rather say that I need more time for it to sink in. The same can't be said of the next song, "Rest Calm". I instantly loved this mid-tempo rocker. It's back to ballads next with "The Crow, The Owl, and The Dove". We've covered that here already. I think this is one of the clear highlights of the album. Moving along we have "Last Ride of the Day". This is a fairly straight forward rocker. I imagine people will accept it just fine. I could see this being a live favorite. We will see how well the community reacts to this one.

    It has become something of a tradition for there to be a lengthy opus on Nightwish albums. We had Ghost Love Score, Poet & The Pendulum. Now we have Song of Myself. Clocking in at over thirteen and a half minutes, it can hang with the best of them. it starts out with operatic touches and moves into a pretty solid rocker. I found myself REALLY enjoying this part. I have to say this is the first moment I have truly felt Anette's voice has absolutely shined: a perfect blend of music and vocals. About half way through, the song changes in ways that I don't want to spoil. I am not entirely sure how I feel about the change. I will at least say that it is very poetic and reminds one of the end of Bless the Child.

    Finally we round out with Imaginaerum (the song). It's pure movie score. Very orchestral. it seems a bit like a tour of the album. I thought it was a great finisher.

    So now that it is finished, final opinion? Well, the album will have to sink in for a more permanent opinion, but while this is unlikely to be considered their finest album, there is a quite a fair bit to like, once given a chance and listened to with an open mind.
     
  2. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    I am so jealous of everyone who has heard the album so far! I know a lot of folks got their pre-orders today...I was not one of them. ;)
     
  3. Bianca74

    Bianca74 Member

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    I pre-ordered the CD and haven't got it yet, which sucks! And the fact that some stores in Finland already started to sell the album shows a lot of disrespect to the band itself, in my opinion. Thank you Tramz for the review!
    The 32 seconds I heard of "Love, Slow, Love" made very little impression so I'm a bit scared to say the least, to even listen to it. What I'm afraid of about the new album, is that will have very deep valleys and very high mountains, that the overall impression of it will be like of DPP, where I loved some songs and couldn't stand some of the others.
     
  4. SheisMySin

    SheisMySin Member

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    How are people in the US buying this?

    Was it shipped from Finland?

    I had a chance to listen to all the songs last night on Youtube before they were removed, and I have to say....these songs are very hit and miss with me. That said, I also did not like DPP very much the first listen either, and grew to love it. With Tarja albums, I loved them all from the first notes.

    I can't remember the names of the songs, but I liked 5 I think off Imaginaerum...the slow experimental stuff was...eh. Also, it was a bit too theatrical. In the past, the theatrical sounds was more of an accent to the power of Nightwish metal...now this aspect it very much at the forefront.

    Based off ONE listen, I think it's about equal to DPP, maybe slightly worse. But over time, it'll be similar to DPP for me.

    X
     
  5. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    It's true there are a bit more in the way of slow elements to this cd, but there is a goodly amount of uptempo music as well. I think the key here is to accept that a band who creates the same album ad infinitum is dead. They might as well be some golden oldies band playing greatest hits at some free outdoor festival for your parents at that point.

    Imaginaerum does shift a bit in direction. What matters is whether or not the shift remains good. A friend who also has heard the album told me that it would probably be a good album for any other band besides Nightwish, but it's not what she expects from them. So why not just accept it as a good album? Either way, there's a strange tale at work here. So yeah, I'm going to have to live with the album for a while to see exactly how i will feel about everything in the long run. But hey, if I wanted easily digestible music, I would be the kind of person who bopped along to Britney Spears and Justin Beiber. ;]
     
  6. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    She is my Sin: We have ways... ;)

    Seriously, people who pre-ordered the album received theirs a bit early, so this is why you are reading reviews of the album before it's actually available.

    I got my chance to listen to the album last night, and I don't know if it's because my laptop has sh*tty speakers or what, but I realize that this is definitely an album I need to hear on a good stereo system. There is so much there to digest that I can't give a full review right now. I definitely agree with the reviews that we've all read over the last few months, by those who only could write on the fly what they were hearing off one listen: hearing the album one time is not nearly enough to get a feel for everything that's going on. So I need to give it another listen or two before I can start narrowing it down to favorite songs, parts on the album that I liked, etc.

    One thing I will say is that over the last few albums, each Nightwish epic has managed to top the last one. But I didn't feel that with "Song of Myself". Again, this is just judging on first listen, and I remember I wasn't too keen on "Ghost Love Score" right away either. So give me a chance to hear this album a couple more times, and I promise I'll come back with something a little more substantial! :lol:
     
  7. SheisMySin

    SheisMySin Member

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    How do I order this???

    HELP HELP!

    lol

    Seriously! :)

    I thought it would be on the iTunes or something...but it's not. Did you order it directly from the NW shop? How long does it take to get here?
     
  8. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    Some people are having different issues; Bianca74 pre-ordered, and she still hasn't gotten hers, and she lives in Finland!
     
  9. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    C, It's always blown my mind ho GLS didn't amaze you right off the bat. If I want to introduce someone to Nightwish, there is a very good chance I will steer them towards GLS. Song of Myself isn't quite as good as GLS or P&P, especially because of the second half. But I still think it really works with Anette. It's not a song that would have worked for Tarja nearly as well. Then again, it's an obvious thing to tailor music to the voice at hand.
     
  10. SheisMySin

    SheisMySin Member

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    Is someone going to tell me how to order this or not? :)

    OR can someone pm me, and I will write them a check for $20 if they mail me a burned copy!

    I'm desperate, I tell you, desperate!
     
  11. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    The mystical secrets I possess shall never be revealed! hehe all kidding aside, I don't want to make any purchasing recommendations. My own experiences aside, I cannot guarantee a speedy delivery from any given place. This is why I remain silent. That said, you should be able to order it from virtually anywhere, such as the Nightwish shop, and get it in a reasonable time now as it's release happens tomorrow (the 30th).
     
  12. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    You know, Storytime is starting to grow on me. I suppose that is always the natural way. I think the video was just such a big "wtf" question mark that it took the song down with it.
     
  13. DemonXeno

    DemonXeno One with the ocean

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    im on the first listen now and im enjoying it so far..
    just got to the 2nd half of scartale and this... is ..awesome
     
  14. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    XENO!!! I've missed you! How the hell have you been?!

    She is my Sin: PM me, and I can try to help you.
     
  15. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    Man, it's good to see old faces again, even the crazy ones like Xeno hehe.
     
  16. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    Hell yeah! OSA forum is like the perpetual phoenix, always rising again whenever Nightwish comes back to life!

    Tramz: It's a bit of a harsh phrase for me to say that I was never "blown away" by GLS the first time I heard it, because it's my favorite Once song after "Planet Hell". But it just took a while to knock "Beauty of the Beast" off the throne for me, that's all.
     
  17. Bianca74

    Bianca74 Member

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    Tramz: I suggest never watching the "Storytime" video again, I won't because I really don't want to associate the song with the video. I think, and sorry for spamming here, that the video is a big mistake. So just forget the video and listen to the song, glad that it's growing on you!
     
  18. Bianca74

    Bianca74 Member

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    Well I've listened to the album start to finish five times now...

    Okay let me first say that it was great surprise to find the album cover art work in the form of a small panoramic poster! I was so disappointed to find out that that a normal poster size of it might not get released at all. Only a few signed canvases will be available, and a very limited edition at that.

    So to the songs, and I'm going to be very brief:

    1. Taikatalvi. better than I expected it would be. From the 32 seconds I heard of it a few days ago, I wasn't too impressed.
    2. Storytime: well you know how I feel about it, it's amazing!
    3. Ghost river: I think it's neither good nor bad, it's not really memorable.
    4. Slow, Love, Slow: well the good thing about this song is that I won't have any trouble getting my niece to sleep when she comes over for a sleep-over. The problem is that I might actually fall asleep before her. WTF. After listening to it 5 times, I can honestly say that I think it's the worst song Tuomas has ever written. Enough said.
    5. I want my tears back: great song, catchy, Anette's vocals are great.
    6. Scaretale: well what can I say? I hope it'll grow on me, but mostly it just makes me laugh, and not in a good way. But like I said, maybe I'll like it after listening to it a couple of hundred times...
    7. Arabesque: suffers from the same thing as Ghost rive, it's not memorable. Thankfully only 3 minutes long.
    8. Turn loose the mermaids: beautiful, beautiful song, one of my favourite songs on the album.
    9. Rest calm: Vintage Nightwish! Nice change in tempo, both Anette and Marco sounds great.
    10. The Crow, The Owl And the Dove: Well you know, I love this song. Well done Marco! Especially Marco's voice on this one impresses me a lot.
    11. Last ride of the day: Love this song! I think that Tramz is right that it will be a live favourite.
    12. Song of myself: the first 7 minutes: I really love this first part! Better than The Poet and the Pendulum in my opinion. The last 6 minutes is to me a bit of a question mark. I have never been a fan of talking during a song, so for me these 6 minutes ruin the song but the good thing is that after 7 minutes you can just stop listening.

    Overall I think this album is much better than DPP. And I agree with those who feel that Anette's vocals have improved, I think she does a great job, I also enjoy Marco's vocals except on Ghost river, I don't like his vocals on it.

    I apologize for not being giving a very elaborate review, but at least you know which songs I like and which I don't, and not being a musical person, I don't have the ability to express myself as eloquently as I would like.

    If anyone want the lyrics, pm me and I'll send them to you.

    Michèle
     
  19. Tramz

    Tramz OSA Council Member

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    Thanks for the opinions/review Bianca :) It seems we agree on many points. For me, after many more listens, I am starting to consider 'Turn Loose The Mermaids" boring for my taste. But I can see how it might appeal to some. I knew "Slow, Love, Slow" would prove controversial. One has to figure Tuomas did as well. However, I generally stand by my opinion of the song. I still see it as artistic and jazzy. One of the only changes would be that I consider it a bit loungy (as in music for some kind of classic smokey jazz lounge). I have a feeling it will be one of those niche songs that the majority dislike but will have a core of defenders. At the end of the day, everyone, of course, is entitled to like what they will.

    Part of the reason I like Arabesque is that I am a percussionist. It appeals to me on that score. As for "Song of Myself", I am already a big fan of the first half, but I am not sure I view it as being better than P&P. I am also of the opinion that imaginaerum is an overall superior album to DPP.

    Emerging Clear Favorites (in no real order): Last Ride of the Day (backing up my "live favorite" opinion: the theme of the song suggests it could end a set someday if it lives up to my prediction), Rest Calm, "The Crow, The Owl and The Dove", Song of Myself (first half), "Slow, Love, Slow" (good in a different way), I Want My Tears Back (a bit mediocre, but it still makes this list)

    Middle Ground: Arabesque, Ghost River, Storytime, Imaginaerum.

    Least Favorite: Scaretale (torn betweem this and middle ground), Taikatalvi, Turn Loose The Mermaids.
     
  20. C.

    C. OSA Webmistress

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    It was hard for me to get into "Song of Myself" because I couldn't understand a lot of the spoken parts, but I found the lyrics online, and it started to come together. I really love Anette's voice on this one.

    "Slow, Love, Slow" is a favorite for me so far, but I love when bands "think outside the box" and do something different than what they're normally known for.

    "I Want my Tears Back" is awesome; that seems to be one of the fan favorites thus far. So is "Last Ride of the Day".

    Anette sounds great on "Scaretale", you can really hear the versatility in her voice on that one. Now the "Storytime" video makes a little more sense to me, as Tuomas even said that the video featured scenes from the "Scaretale" part of the movie. So I could see the scary-looking clowns dancing around! Eek!

    "Ghost River" is also an awesome tune.

    These are the tracks that are standing out most for me right now.
     

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