Live In Finland [DVD] review by Sonata Arctica

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  • Released: Nov 11, 2011
  • Sound: 10
  • Content: 7
  • Production Quality: 8
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 8.8 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.3 (6 votes)
Sonata Arctica: Live In Finland [DVD]

Sound — 10
Sonata Arctica's has a very unique style. At the beginning it was a speed metal band, and they slowly became a melodic, progressive metal band. They explored every style of melodic-symphonic metal. They always sounded great, so do that DVD. We can regret a lack of power with the electric guitars, because of the presence of only one guitarist: during the guitar/keyboards duet solos (which are very well mixed by the way) only the bass play the rhythm part. The keyboards are really in front of the mix, and it suits very well to Sonata's music. Tony Kakko (singer) made a good performance. He said about this live DVD that they were working on it since "For The Sake Of Revenge", and we can see that they wanted it perfect. Maybe a bit too perfect: in a live DVD, ain't we supposed to hear the public?

Content — 7
The DVD (avaible in Blue Ray as well) contains 2 DVDs and 2 CDs: one CD and one DVD for the live concert filmed in Oulu, Finland (18 songs on the DVD, 14 on the CD; "FullMoon" (!), "Victoria's Secret" and acoustic versions of "Mary Lou" and "Shy" were cut out of the CD, why?! That's so regrettable...), a bonus CD featuring a 8 songs show at Sonata Arctica Open Air and a Bonus DVD with a 15 minutes making of, 2 tour documentary of about an hour long, music video of "Flag In The Ground" and its making of. I love documentaries, but these are a bit too long; the making of the show is great. The setlist of the Oulu's show is simply perfect: there is at least a song from every albums, and it is like a best of (it only miss San Sebastian), with a three song acoustic set ("Mary Lou", "Shy" and an exclusive extended version of "Letter To Dana"). But what a mistake to have removed 4 of the best songs out of the CD.

Production Quality — 8
Perfect setlist, very good audience (unfortunately we can't hear it on most of the songs, but when we do it's just... Amazing, you must hear them on "FullMoon" to Understand), the band is very happy to be here and they show it (Henrik, keyboard, is almost in trans; how not to shiver on the piano/vocal part of Juliet with Tony on his knees and crying... He does not only sing, he plays like an actor), a good light production and some nice tricks (Fireworks on "FullMoon", Flamethrower on "The Last Amazing Greys", and a really pretty camp fire on stage during the acoustic set). This is a nice show, but maybe it would have worth more tricks.

Overall Impression — 10
I love live DVD, I prefer live rather than studio music, and I've seen a lot of live DVD, but none were better than this one. It is a great show, and a must-have for every Sonata's fans and live music lovers. Of course it has some mistakes (AAAR, those songs missing on the CD, it's so disappointing!) but nothing spoil the perfectness of the Oulu's show. Another sad thing: "Tallulah" is on the 2nd CD but not in video on the DVD... Best things of the show: Tony playing Romeo's role on "Juliet", and the campfire during the acoustic set.

2 comments sorted by best / new / date

    As it was pointed out by the previous comment, the guitars sound terrible. I like the setlist and in most of the songs I got used to the weak guitar sound, but pieces like Don't Say a Word lose a lot with this problem. Even WOA's 2008 broadcast is superior in this aspect.
    Great DVD, but the production sucks. Elias' guitar is barely audible and has a very sharp, rough sound. "For The Sake Of Revenge" DVD was 10 times more powerful.