Angels Fall First Review

artist: Nightwish date: 12/09/2008 category: compact discs
Nightwish: Angels Fall First
Release Date: 1997
Label: Spinefarm
Genres: Heavy Metal, Goth Metal, Symphonic Black Metal, Progressive Metal
Number Of Tracks: 12
If you are looking for a stereotypical Nightwish album, this is not one for you, even though it was their first album and does show a lot of musical talent.
 Sound: 8.5
 Lyrics: 7
 Overall Impression: 8.5
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reviews (2) 10 comments vote for this album:
overall: 7
Angels Fall First Reviewed by: Black-Metal, on june 12, 2007
2 of 3 people found this review helpful

Sound: The only album where Tuomas did not write the majority of the music, it was a shared burden on this album. Musically, this album is interesting. If you are a new fan of nightwish, and only know recent material of albums like century child and once, then you can expect something very different here. Nightwish make use of the orchestral back drops as always, however, this doesn't sound so great, as at the time Nightwish didn't ave enough money to pay for an orchestra, so they use Tuomas's synthy keyboards instead, this leaves a sound which is missing that "epic" feel and feels a bit weak, like the bieginning of "Beauty And The Beast". Do not mistake me though, this is an excellent album, put together before Sami or Marco joined the band so Emppu plays all 6string and bass guitars, making this a bit of a boring album for those of you listening for killer bass lines. Originally, nightwish were a piano-guitar-vocal trio who later became a metal band. This is obvious on songs such as "Angels Fall First" where a small section of drums has been added and the 4 part song "Lappi". Apart from these few songs, which are still beautiful songs for those of us who are more open minded to others styles other than metal, the rest of the album shows the clear origins of the modern nightwish. "Know why the nightingale sings" has a killer guitar riff and drum line with a beautifl piano solo at the end. the album makes use of a lot of flutes, somewhat of an open for the appearence of John Two Hawks On The Once album. If you are looking for a stereotypical Nightwish album, this is not one for you, even though it was their first album and does show a lot of musical talent. // 8

Lyrics: As always, Tuomas wrote all the lyrics for this album. Mixed opinions on the lyrical and vocal side of this album; it is the only album to feature tuomas singing duets with tarja, and his singing at first seems cringe worthy, but after a while it starts to sink in a sound quite nice. Tarja's voice has yet to develop on this album, is sounds like any other soprano singer and has yet to show some charecter and unique sound. Lyrically, this album has highs and lows. ashamed to say, I deliberatley skip some tracks because the lyrics are either so cliche'd or cringe worthy. Songs like "Elvenpath", "The Carpenter" and parts of "Beauty And The Beast" are terribly cliche'd ("Forever shall the wolf in me desire the sheep in you" etc) and the singing on the Carpenter from both tarja and tuomas is terrible in the chorus but alright in the verses. On the bright side of things, songs like "Angels Fall First" feature some amazing vocal talent and lyrical genius. Some of the phrases are poetic master pieces and hold an epic quality to them. // 6

Overall Impression: Over all, this album was a fairly neautral buy, I could have bought better but it wasn't a bad buy and I certainly enjoyed the album. The main let down was the lower quality lyrics and singing. Musically, the album was lovely, featuring a broad range of styles from acoustic to folk to metal. The artwork for the album is interesting, fairly basic but with nice photography on the front (believe it or not that is a real photo and not a coputer graphic) and features a picture of all the band with short hair on the inside as well as Tarja without her make up (she must have had a face lift since then aswell, her cheeks are far higher and slender now). I would probably buy this album again, as it is cheap in most shops and is worth it for the tracks I enjoy. // 7

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overall: 9
Angels Fall First Reviewed by: gojaromeiginla, on december 09, 2008
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: Angels Fall First was initially the second demo album of the now famous Symphonic Metal Group known as Nightwish, and turned into their debut album after they signed with Spinefarm Records. Nowadays, Nightwish is one of the most epic metal bands out there, and has even moved people to tears on occasion, but back in 1997, Nightwish sounded very different. As the band was forming, they played a brand of "acoustic mood music," according to Tuomas Holopainen (the keyboardist and main songwriter of NW) and gradually shifted to metal as it became apparent that Tarja Turunen's vocals were too powerful for an acoustic project. The overall sound of Angels Fall First is therefore a hybrid of these two stages of the band, as many of the songs on the album were written prior to the shift in styles. This is particularly evident on the 2008 re-release of the album, which includes three demo tracks. However, despite the major acoustic influences on this album, the metal part is certainly there on many songs. For example, the main riff of "Beauty and the Beast" is reminiscent of hardcore power metal on many levels, and shows Emppu Vuorinen's skill with a guitar. The drums on the album blend in very well with the music, in that there are very little drums on the lighter songs, but are certainly a major force in the album's heavy songs. The majority of the effects on the album were done by Tuomas by way of synths, which at times can make the album sound tacky, but is generally the glue that holds everything together. This album is the beginning of one of the greatest modern metal bands, but may not appeal to fans of their newer material. Nevertheless, this album is a very good debut album, and is just as brilliant regardless of a difference in sound. // 9

Lyrics: The lyrics on this album are very diverse, and as usual are all written by Tuomas. As the previous reviewer stated, some of the lines seem relatively cliche, but the lyrics never fail to fit perfectly with the music. Also, Tuomas was obviously finding his groove in terms of writing, so some of the material was definitely quite experimental. Tarja Turunen's vocals are nothing short of amazing, as per usual. On the acoustic songs she certainly seems to overpower the music at times, but was mixed in such a way that it doesn't really take away from anything at all. She sounds more in line with the music on the heavier songs, but in general, her singing is an amazing part of this album that foreshadows the greatness that would come for Nightwish. Tuomas also sang on three of the songs, and although his vocals aren't all that good to be honest, he still conveys all the emotion that the songs require. In live shows some of these songs made use of guest vocalists such as Tony Kakko from Sonata Arctica, but on the album itself, Tuomas did a fine job under the circumstances. // 8

Overall Impression: This album really didn't have very much to compare to at the time, as they were still in between styles when it was released. However, it was the forerunner of great albums such as "Once" and "Dark Passion Play," which are arguably the best in the symphonic metal genre. Still, back in 1997, the genre itself was still getting it's start, so there wasn't much to compare this album to back when it was released. Many of the songs on this album are very impressive, with my personal favourites being "Beauty and the Beast," "The Carpenter," "Nymphomaniac Fantasia," "Lappi," and "Nightwish," the demo from the 2008 re-release. I loved almost everything about this album, and overall, the only song I wasn't really crazy about was "Tutankhamen," which seems to be the only song that doesn't really fit with the general theme of the album, whatever that might be. If I were to lose this album under any circumstances, I'd buy 2 copies to make sure it didn't happen again. // 10

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