“Over The Hills And Far Away” (remaster) by Nightwish

Artist: Nightwish
Title: “Over The Hills And Far Away” (remaster)
Label: Century Media Records
Release Date: 11/30/2004
Genre: Symphonic Operatic Metal
Rating: 4/5

“Over The Hills And Far Away” is the first and currently only EP that Nightwish has ever released over the course of their very productive career. The title of the CD is the same as that of the bands cover of the Gary Moore classic bearing the same name and if you ever wondered how a Symphonic Operatic Metal band would fare with a rendition of a Bluesy Metal classic then seek no further and be ready to be impressed. Tuomas’ keyboard riffs bring new life to the main feel of the song while Tarja’s passionate and powerful voice propels it into the stratosphere. The video for this track was what originally led me to them as a band and when this was combined with the song “The Kinslayer”, I was hooked for good. There are very few times when a cover surpasses that of the original and I think as far as this number goes it is a strong contender for being an upgrade from top to bottom. The rest of the recording is a mix of other originals and some live stuff and continues with “10th Man Down”, a song about war that features Finntroll’s Tapio Wilska as the deep male vocal. It’s one of those songs that demonstrate the rich and lustrous composition that Nightwish is capable of. “Away” is a ballad that is second to none and should be considered as one of the most beautiful songs that the band has ever recorded. The original material closes with a remake of “Astral Romance” and it showcases the vocals of Sonata Arctica’s Tony Kakko as well. The fans of Sonata will enjoy hearing Tony in a slightly different aspect from what they are used to and as far as redo’s of a bands own tunes are concerned this one is a winner.

The remaining six songs on the CD are live tracks that come from the “Wishes To Eternity” DVD film and should you be lucky enough to have already seen it or even own a copy then you don’t need me to remind you of its being an amazing presentation of the band on the concert stage. The tour was in support of the “Wishmaster” album of 2000 and finds the band on fire in terms of live recordings that are out there. The full video is a recommendation and should be a part of your collection if you are a Nightwish or other Symphonic Operatic bands of this kind. Until you can find a copy these live tracks are enough to do the trick. This was originally released by Spinefarm Records in 2001, and now the fans of a larger demographic were able to indulge in it once Century Media Records had them on the label.

Track Listing:
1. Over The Hills And Far Away
2. 10th Man Down
3. Away
4. Astral Romance – remake 2001
5. The Kinslayer – live
6. She Is My Sin – live
7. Sacrament Of Wilderness – live
8. Walking In The Air – live
9. Beauty And The Beast – live
10. Wishmaster – live

Official Website: www.nightwish.com

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