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“Mother Earth” (remaster) by Within Temptation

Artist: Within Temptation
Title: “Mother Earth” (remaster)
Label: Roadrunner Records
Release Date: 8/5/2008
Genre: Symphonic Gothic Metal
Rating: 4.5/5

My introduction to Within Temptation does not come without some back story to it for I remember that I had only been turned on to Nightwish a couple of years earlier and while sitting in the cubicle at one of the gulag’s I worked in, I was listening to the freedom that music offered a person from that realm via Yahoo’s Music player. When I set the player up to bands I enjoyed, it said “listeners who like Nightwish also like Within Temptation” or something to that effect, and with this being before the days of mass Ipod use or millions of web-based music sites, this was pretty cool. The songs that the Yahoo player started delivering were from Within Temptation’s “Mother Earth” album and I was immediately hooked on the powerful symphonic drive of the group as well as some of the haunting melodies that they blended so well together. Of course, being 2002-2003, finding this album stateside was impossible and now thanks to Roadrunner Records releasing a remastered and expanded edition a larger fan base can finally catch on to them in 2008. “Mother Earth” is the bands second studio album and probably the best place that a listener can come on board and begin their own appreciation of them based on the overall strength of the material and the fact that the band had moved on from a far darker sound with this album and maintained course since. Opening with its title track “Mother Earth”, the release sets the mood in dramatic fashion and while the band crunches and grooves behind her, singer Sharon den Adel simply mesmerizes you. Her voice is fantastic and while she can attain some of the soaring operatic heights she also sings at a normal register and that fact makes the album a little easier to appreciate. The song has remained one of my own favorites since this was the first track that I ever heard from them.
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