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Author Topic: Album of the Week - Band: Sonata Arctica - Album: Ecliptica  (Read 9163 times)
amir
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« on: December 09, 2007, 04:12:40 am »

ALBUM OF THE WEEK: Sonata Arctica - Ecliptica

We are conducting a community driven album of the week presentation. If you are a regular listener, please consider requesting a few tracks from the album mentioned on the title of this post. More details on how this idea developed is available in this thread:

http://www.epicrockradio.com/smf/index.php?topic=3879.0

You are also welcome to suggest albums for next weeks.

If you request a track from this album, please copy and paste the following message in the dedication box of the pop-up window.


**Album of the Week**
Sonata Arctica's "Ecliptica"

Head over and join in on the message board and learn more about the featured disc. And/or share your thoughts on "Ecliptica". Rock On!


More information on current Album of the Week:
Band: Sonata Arctica - Album: Ecliptica

Location in the library:
http://www.epicrockradio.com/playlist.php?start=150&limit=50&letter=S&search=
« Last Edit: December 18, 2007, 06:11:48 am by amir » Logged
i_am_fabio
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« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2007, 11:35:38 am »

Here's a little Biography on the band....

Sonata Arctica is a Finnish power metal band from the town of Kemi, originally assembled in 1996. Their later albums (particularly Unia) are also often cited as part of the progressive metal genre.

The band was founded by Tony Kakko, Jani Liimatainen, Marko Paasikoski, Tommy Portimo and Pentti Peura in Kemi in 1996. Originally named Tricky Beans, they played hard rock rather than the power metal with which they grew to fame. During their early career, they recorded three demos which were never sent to any recording label ? Friend 'till the End, Agre Pamppers and PeaceMaker.

In 1997 the band changed their name to Tricky Means, and from that point until 1999 their style was thoroughly worked upon and ultimately was drastically changed, acquiring strong emphasis on the keyboard melodies and relying on an easily distinguishable rhythm line maintained both by the bass and the guitar. Vocalist Tony Kakko developed a clean singing style which relies both on falsetto and tenor voices and second guitarist Marko Paasikoski left the band. Tony has stated that the change of sound was influenced by fellow Finnish power metal band Stratovarius.[1]

In 1999, the band recorded a demo entitled FullMoon in Kemi's Tico Tico Studios, which was their first real metal recording. The line-up consisted of vocalist and keyboardist Tony Kakko, guitarist Jani Liimatainen, bassist Janne Kivilahti and drummer Tommy Portimo. The demo was sent to Spinefarm Records by a friend of the band and a recording deal soon followed, during which the band changed its name to Sonata Arctica.

Later that year, Sonata Arctica's first single ? entitled UnOpened ? was released in Finland. It entered the Finnish Top 20 sales chart on the week of its release and, soon enough, the band had closed deals with labels from around the world, prior to the release of their debut album. The debut Ecliptica arrived by the end of 1999 and had a worldwide release, obtaining rave critics from the specialized press.


Tony Kakko then decided to focus on singing and began looking for a new keyboard player for Sonata Arctica; Mikko H?rkin (ex-Kenziner) was eventually invited to fill the position.

In the beginning of 2000, Sonata Arctica was chosen to support the well known power metal band Stratovarius throughout their European tour. Marko Paasikoski returned to the band to play bass in the wake of Janne Kivilahti's departure after the tour.

From late 2000 to late 2001, the band worked on composing and recording their next album ? Silence ? which was released in June of 2001. An extensive tour followed, which included concerts throughout Europe (together with Gamma Ray) and Japan. In 2002 Sonata Arctica made its first incursion to America, putting on shows in Brazil and Chile. According to some of the musicians from the band, it was one of their best tours to date ? the other being the Japanese tour from 2003. A live album entitled Songs of Silence was also released that year, consisting of gigs from their tour in Japan.

By the end of 2002, Mikko H?rkin left the band due to personal reasons. Their third album ? Winterheart's Guild ? was recorded with the help of the seasoned keyboard player Jens Johansson from Stratovarius, who recorded the keyboard solos, while Kakko took care of the basics. The album was released in 2003.

In the search for another keyboardist, the band received many applications and two of them were invited for auditions. Since they were well aware of the candidates' ability, the band decided to pick the new member based on personality. To this end they spent a night drinking with each of the potentials in order to find out which one would fit best into the band's personality and mentality. Henrik Klingenberg was eventually chosen and joined the band in time to take part in the tour that followed the release of Winterheart's Guild. Most of the concerts on the tour were sold out.

With the end of their contract with Spinefarm Records, the band received invitations from most European recording labels, and eventually opted for Nuclear Blast.

In early 2004, the band was chosen as the opener for Iron Maiden's Japanese tour. Additionally, Tommy Portimo became a father; his wife gave birth to a baby girl in March.

Reckoning Night was recorded in three months and released in October. Both the single and the EP of this release remained on the top of the Finnish charts simultaneously for over six weeks. A promotional tour was to follow, but Sonata Arctica was invited by the popular Nightwish to join their European tour, and thus made a change of plans. The concerts that followed were played for audiences of over ten thousand people.




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« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2007, 11:36:13 am »

Biography continued....

In early 2005, Nightwish invited the band to open the concerts of their North American tour. This tour eventually got cancelled, but the members of Sonata Arctica opted to still make a short tour, playing concerts in Canada and in the USA.

The band then released a live CD and DVD entitled For the Sake of Revenge, which was recorded in Tokyo in February of 2005 and released in 2006. Then, Spinefarm Records released a compilation album in order to get the most out of their contract with the band, since Sonata Arctica changed their recording label. The compilation is entitled The End of This Chapter and was released in Japan in August 2005 and in Europe on May 2006.

A computer video game is also planned based on Sonata Arctica characters and music. The name of the game will be Winterheart's Guild, like their album. The game will be developed by Zelian Games, and will be an Action-RPG in a style between Fallout and Diablo. Further details or a release date are not yet available, but a demo was shown at the Leipzig video game conference in 2006, featuring Henrik Klingenberg as the playable character.

As of December 2006, the band began recording their fifth studio album, Unia. The album was released May 25, 2007. The album's first single, "Paid In Full", was released April 27, 2007. Interestingly, the cover for "Unia" features a barely perceptible image of a person's hair and eyes looking out through a crack in the background in the lower right-hand corner. It is likely an allusion to the person in the song "Caleb" on "Unia".

The band headlined at ProgPower USA VIII in October 2007.
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« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2007, 11:38:30 am »

Ecliptica is the first full-length album by the power metal band Sonata Arctica. It was released in 1999 through Spinefarm Records (Century Media in the US).


[edit] Track listing
"Blank File" ? 4:05
"My Land" ? 4:36
"8th Commandment" ? 3:41
"Replica" ? 4:55
"Kingdom for a Heart" ? 3:51
"FullMoon" ? 5:06
"Letter to Dana" ? 6:00
"UnOpened" ? 3:42
"Picturing The Past" ? 3:36
"Destruction Preventer" ? 7:40
"Mary-Lou" ? 4:30 (Bonustrack on Japanese & Korean, South American, and other releases)

[edit] Credits
Tony Kakko ? vocals, keyboards
Jani Liimatainen ? guitars
Janne Kivilahti ? bass
Tommy Portimo ? drums
Raisa Aine ? flute on "Letter to Dana"
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« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2007, 11:47:07 am »

http://www.sonataarctica.info/site07/ <--------Here you can jump right over to the Sonata Arctica Main Page.

http://www.myspace.com/sonataarctica <------Here is the link to their official myspace, where you can hear the song 'My Land' featured from the Album of the Week

http://www.darklyrics.com/lyrics/sonataarctica/ecliptica.html <-----This will bring you to the lyrics for the album "Ecliptica".
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« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2007, 11:50:32 am »

Here is a Review found at www.metal-observer.com

Sonata Arctica - Ecliptica (9/10) - Finland - 2000

Genre: Power Metal
Label: Century Media (USA)
Playing time: 47:19
Band homepage: Sonata Arctica

Tracklist:

Blank File
My Land
8th Commandment
Replica
Kingdom For A Heart
Fullmoon
Letter To Dana
Unopened
Picturing The Past
Destruction Preventer
   
The Finns of SONATA ARCTICA are midwhile a big name in Heavy Metal after their three studio records. It all started with the already pioneering debut "Ecliptica".
It kicks off with "Blank File", a really supercool, melodic highspeed song. This song is catchy as hell. I rarely listened ever to such an opener. Still today, this song belongs to one of my favourites from the band. The following "My Land" is a bit slown down but not less melodic. "8th Commandment" is then again more in the direction of the opener. Speedy, sappy and with a catchy chorus.

By the way, the guitar and keyboardwork reminds strong of their compatriots STRATOVARIUS. But SONATA ARCTICA are absolutely no copy of them. Solely that atmosphere on "Ecliptica" is truly unique alike on so much other debut records of other bands. You know what I mean.

The midpart of "Ecliptica" is then more calmer. "Replica", the first ballad, provides you a little break. "Kingdom For A Heart" and "Fullmoon" are more mid-paced. But alike on all previous songs, the earcandy factor remains at full 100%. It's so interesting how the band manages it to create all songs capivating and diversified. "Letter To Dana", the second ballad, is then a bit worse. The song is nice but personally a bit too greasy. Who thinks now, that the remaining tracks are also worse, is completely wrong. With the three diversified speed shells "Unopened", "Picturing The Past" and the great closing hammer "Destruction Preventer", 50 minutes full of great Speed/Melodic Metal comes to the end.

If there is anything you can complain about, then it's the sound. But show me the band who had already on their debut the perfect sound. Also Tony hasn't yet the most matured voice, but that's not troubling. It's in any case worthful what this man offers and his voice fits 100% to the music. "Ecliptica" has somehow that spirit, a really great record needs. The both following records of them are also very good but the debut is still my favourite. To sum it up, who digs on fast and melodic sounds gets the best with SONATA ARCTICA and especially "Ecliptica". Friends of HELLOWEEN, GAMMA RAY and STRATOVARIUS will sure find a new friend in SONATA ARCTICA. So, the three foremenioned bands don't have to be worry about their heritage.

Tips: "Blank File", "8th Commandment", "Destruction Preventer"... (Online August 10, 2003)
 
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« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2007, 12:05:13 pm »

The Whole Point of the Album of the Week is so that we can help the artists get noticed and hope that people will support them by legally purchasing their work, so here are some links where you can purchase the Album "Ecliptica"......

CD Universe:
http://www.cduniverse.com/search/xx/music/pid/6244455/a/Ecliptica.htm

Amazon
http://www.amazon.com/Ecliptica-Sonata-Arctica/dp/B0000AZKPC

The Lasers Edge
http://www.lasercd.com/category.aspx?categoryid=23&startpage=7

The End Records
http://www.theomegaorder.com/s.nl/sc.2/category.8/.f?range=551%2C600%2C881

If you know of other places that provide it please add your knowledge.  Cool
« Last Edit: December 09, 2007, 12:09:38 pm by i_am_fabio » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2007, 07:23:27 pm »

Bada** band and i cant wait to see them live in February. Interesting read on the bio of the band and the review of the album. "My land" and "replica" will always be a couple of my favorite songs because they were both played by me and my band in our first live gig. It was in a barn in the middle of the country but it still counts right? Cool
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« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2007, 07:40:37 pm »

By the way is there a certain place we are supposed to put our suggestions for AOTW? Or is it just on this page? Embarrassed
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« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2007, 12:30:23 am »

Hey Fabio, thanks for the great info. Comprehensive as usual, I'm looking forward for Sonata Arctica to hear more of them.

And Lucas, yes you can put your suggestions here, and we will make it for the next week.
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« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2007, 07:07:51 am »

Final note on the biography : Unia sucks! Everything else is just as good as the finest you can dream of...

You saw that coming Fabio Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2007, 02:29:27 am »

Any suggestions for this week? Lucas, may be you can throw one band Wink
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« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2007, 10:11:04 am »

I've been on an Arwen kick lately.....  Wink  *nudge nudge*
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« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2007, 12:25:44 pm »

Hey Kailef, nice to hear from you on this thread. Could you be more specific which album of Arwen you are suggesting? We have "Illusions" and "Memories of a Dream".
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« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2007, 01:07:16 pm »

Let's go with "Illusions". It's the newer one, so i would assume it's better...or it should be. I look forward to hearing it.  Wink
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