It’s taken Finnish metal band Sonata Arctica 24 years to reach album number ten. Is it any good? Let’s investigate.
Although it’s hard not to jump on the bandwagon when talking about 2016 we still wish you a pleasant year’s end and a cheer for the new year. However, before we start the days that lay ahead with champagne and fireworks we counted our blessings which of course, also resulted in these two illustrious album year lists.
Although it’s always difficult to pin down a musical year in a few words a lot of critics do it anyway. Thus, we can’t stay behind on that, can we? However, before we end 2014 in style, let us loosely say we enjoyed working in the dark to serve you the reviews of the music we like and that nothing is true and yes, … everything is permitted.
Hey y’all, summer solstice lies behind us so it’s time to saw the year in half. These are our top albums of 2014 until now and in no apparent order. Metal, Latin, Hip Hop-Jazz, Western funeral march music… we’ve got it all! Continue reading
On and on rolls the power metal train, with just about every German power metal band firing shots one after another. And what’s more: all those bands are releasing unexpectedly strong and heavy albums. It’s as if some Holy Spirit of metal has touched these bands, showing them where their roots lie and that there’s no shame in writing fast songs with double bass drumming (I’m looking at you, Edguy and Sonata Arctica). German metal institution Gamma Ray is the next in line. Continue reading
Before we dive into this review, there is a confession I have to make. I really, really enjoyed Sonata Arctica’s Stones Grow Her Name (2012), a record that is much maligned for being too weird, faux artistic and soft. And whilst I do love the earlier power metal efforts (up to and including Reckoning Night), I think Unia is by far the strongest album the Finnish band has put out. Then again, I also think A Matter of Life and Death is the best album Iron Maiden has released since Powerslave. Perhaps I’m just a sucker for classic metal bands who dare to tread outside of their safety zone and into a more daringly progressive area, which is exactly what Sonata Arctica has been doing for years now. So, with that out of the way, let’s check out what’s on offer this time. Continue reading