Release Date: May 22, 2007
Label: Nuclear Blast
Genres: Heavy Metal, Progressive Metal
Number Of Tracks: 13
If you like older albums such as Ecliptica or Silence, then if you listen to this album, listen to it with an open mind, as it will be different to what you're used to hearing.
wolf_ravenxxx, on june 09, 2007 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: I decided to write this review as I've noticed there isn't one yet, which is strange as it's their latest album, and being their biggest change in both style and lyrics, I would have thought there would have been some criticism to it. But any how, onto the album. Unia, the long awaited album by the great Sonata Arctica was released in 2007. And was received by mixed views from their fans. Some saw the album as yet another great success, however I think it's safe to say the majority of Sonata fans saw it as a disappointment compared to other albums. I personally see it as a good change. Though you miss out on the crazy guitar and keyboard solos, you still get great songs, which in the end, is what Sonata Arctica do best. This is based on the Europe version, as that's the one I have, so I wont be including any of the bonus songs, as I haven't heard them. You are immediately thrown into the world of Unia (which for anyone who doesn't know, is finish for Dreams), with the song In Black And White which in my opinion is the only real Sonata Arctica song on the album. it's serial beginning, mimics that of Dream Thieves, and gets the album off to a good start. The listener immediately notices that Tommy is giving his left leg a break, as there is considerably less double bass peddling, and that Tony has more of scream in his voice. This is by far their heaviest album.
Next up is their first single from the album Paid In Full. I personally really like this song, it's a relatively fast song, but still seems melancholy and sad in a way. Tony in an interview mentions that this album is written mainly on his own emotions and feelings, which is what I think makes it such a memorable CD. The Finnish obviously must love it, as it went straight to number 1 in their charts. What makes this song I think is the piano, Henrik has really outdone himself in this album (although most of the keyboards was done by Tony, bar the solos and rock organ). Third song on the album is For The Sake Of Revenge. It has nothing to do with the live album, and for some reason has been the main criticism to the album. People don't seem to like the lyrics, and to a degree I have to agree with them. I think the whole fat lady singing is really going a bit far. But that aside I found this to be one of my favourites. After a rather short song, comes It Wont Fade, which reminds me of white Pearl Black Oceans (well the chorus at least). Starting with an orchestral beginning you really do realize that Sonata have changed. However I can't blame them. I read the same interview with Tony, that after 11 years playing, they were just getting bored of playing fast songs, such as Wolf and Raven and 8th Commandment, and that they wanted to do something different. Unia is that something different.
Firth song on the album is Under Your Tree. This is another sad one, and really allows you to understand what Tony has been through in his life. Reading the Lyrics you understand that Tony has had female trouble in the past (this is what I think, others may have a different interpretation). Next on the Album is in my opinion the best song on the CD. Caleb brings some speed back into the album, and with a very memorable guitar solo, gets a 10/10 from me. The inclusion of a male choir (all done by Tony) makes this a great song to which you can listen to again and again. Now the lyrics begin to get very weird with The Vice. A weird song, which I never really understood, however lyrics put aside, it is an upbeat song, which brings a happy side to this so far sad and depressing album. After that is in my opinion the worst song on the album. Although starting off good, My Dream's But A Drop Of Fuel For A Nightmare, suddenly turns rather happy and jolly, and I think this really kills the mood of which from the start was a good song. Eighth song on Unia is The Harvest. Yet again another good song, which has the listener coming back to it again and again. Although the only bad point I'll have to say about this album is that it stops rather suddenly. It would have been nice if it had had a piano ending or something, which would have lead into our next song, The Worlds Forgotten, The Words Forbidden. I really love this song, it's slow pace and calm instrumental really sets the scene for a nice melodic song. Although being the shortest song with vocals in Sonata Arctica history, it makes up for it, being a loveable song.
Onto the last two songs of the album. Fly With The Black Swan is another song (similar to the harvest), which really shows you how much different the style is from other albums. I can't write much about this song, as I really don't think it stands out as anything special. it's one of those song, people either enjoy or don't. The Last song however is the perfect way to end the album Unia. It starts off with a string quartet playing the main riff, which was composed by Tony Kakko, and is followed all the way through, with the accompaniment of the band. And of course it wouldn't be Sonata Arctica without their little bits at the end of their songs, and in Unia they have, either Jani or Henka snoring, and then saying something like your sick followed by laughing. You are left rather confused, which in a way is the intention, as when you wake up from a dream, you are rather disorientated. Overall the sound of this Album is great if it's the first album of SA you've heard. However if you are a die-hard fan, then you will think this to be a rather disappointment. Although I think that if you listen to it over and over again, it gets better and better each time, and begins to sound more and more like good old Sonata Arctica. // 8
Lyrics: Bar the occasional slip, mainly in For The Sake Of Revenge I think the lyrics in this album are amazing, they really bring out the emotions within Tony and show you what the band has really been through. And in my opinion that is what great songs are made of. // 9
Overall Impression: Overall I believe this to be a great album, though some will disagree, I believe it to be one of their best, and before anyone disagrees with me, I own all their albums and a few of their EPS so I have heard what Sonata Arctica are really like. The thing that many people dislike about this album is that there is much less guitar, it's more of a keyboard and vocals album, and the lack of solos seems to get on peoples nerves. If you like older albums such as Ecliptica or Silence, then if you listen to this album, listen to it with an open mind, as it will be different to what you're used to hearing. If you are a fan of Reckoning Night, and generally like Sonata Arctica, then you should love this album. Yes their style may have changed but they are still Sonata Arctica and there is a Japanese saying Those who don't change, are doomed to be forgotten though I'm pretty sure they weren't talking about music, the basic principle still exists. Sorry this is long, but I think as it's their most radical album, it deserved a thorough review. // 9
tpvikke, on june 21, 2007 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sound: I own all albums that Sonata Arctica has made. From Ecliptica to Unia. Through the years the band has changed it's music style from "the real" Sonata Arctica metal to something that goes more into a "softer" kind of metal with more synth and calm parts in the songs. Tony, the singer and songwriter, plays piano himself so of course he knows how to make good piano comp, licks and fills. There's nothing wrong in the new music style but I must tell you I like the old Sonata music better than this. The first album, Ecliptica, was pure Sonata music. Nowadays they've been influenced by several bands. // 7
Lyrics: Tony Kakko. He sure knows how to make great lyrics and voices that fits the song. After listening through the album a couple of times the best thing with the whole CD was the lyrics. Tony create the right feeling in the song with his mostly sad lyrics and his way of singing 'em. Tony mostly writes lyrics about "Me and you". Often love troubles. Tony sure can sing and is the best singer from Finland I've heard. And I live in Finland, so trust me I'v heard a lot of em. I think Tony has been somewhere studying english, so also his speech is great. Unfortunately live he can't do the voices 'cause they go to high for him. // 10
Overall Impression: The album can very well compare to other albums, not those made by Sonata Arctica earlier, but well to other artists albums. I'm although a bit dissappointed In their music style change and as I first heard it, it was like: "What? I bought wrong CD?". But as I listened on, I've found that little Sonata Arctica Left in it. I'm Happy there's some Sonata left in their style. Jani, Henrik, Marko and Tommy sure still know how to play. // 8
puju, on march 03, 2010 0 of 3 people found this review helpful
Sound: When I heard 1st time Unias songs I think that is that realy sonata. Just hearing it cople of times I start to think that its their best album. I like from that darker and so much changed sound. But what is missing from the album is fast guitar/ceyboard riffs like in Black sheep, Victorias secret and wolf and raven. But what is best in this album is Kaakkos song, like in It wond fade. Hi can sing so high and shallow. that's why My favourite singer is him. // 9
Lyrics: Like Hedfields, Tonys Lyrics are going whit the music. Tonys sing is best in the earth. Only reason my brother listen sonata is Tonys voice. Someones call Sonata to "knight metal" band. But I diseagree whit that. The lyrics is not abaut from dragons and kingth etc. // 8
Overall Impression: Best at the album is that they play like real band. Guitar and ceaypoard doesn't play always same riff and unlike many band you can hear the bass. Good enough is good enough is brave song because its so differend. Still the drum comps in the album is pretty siple even there is not so much double bedal comps, And taht is good think. // 9