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Artist:

Nightwish

Album:

Highest Hopes - The Best of Nightwish

Year: 2005
Format: CD
Label: Spinefarm
Genre: [Symphonic Metal]
Overall Rating: 8.0
Music: 9.0
Production: 9.0


Listeners of symphonic metal are most likely familiar with Nightwish, since this band has been one of the trailblazers of the genre. With five studio albums under their belt, Nightwish has definitely more than enough material for a "Best of" album. Titled as Highest Hopes, this collection features some peak moments of Nightwish's career. In spite of all, I reckon the band easily could have included another disc to this collection.

Offering an extensive cross-section of Nightwish's career, this record handles its job rather well. The songs vary from touching ballads to grand metal epics. Ironically Nightwish wasn't originally even intended to play metal. Luckily the band made the choice of playing symphonic metal, as I certainly doubt that Nightwish would be as known as they are currently if they'd sticked to their original plan of playing camp fire folk music.

Production - yet being strong on their records - leaves some room for improvement... for example, the drums aren't always that well-mixed. Nonetheless, this record has been engineered rather proficiently. The sounds are full and fairly atmospheric.

All in all, Highest Hopes is a very good record if one hasn't listened to Nightwish before. Regardless, those who already own every Nightwish album won't have much to hear (therefore the reduced overall rating)... this collection contains only one new song, which is a live cover of Pink Floyd's "High Hopes". In addition, there's a new version of Sleeping Sun.

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- MAGE (October 9th, 2005)



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LINE-UP:
Holopainen, Tuomas: Keys & Piano, Backing Vocals on "Over the Hills and Far Away"
Vuorinen, Emppu: Guitars, Bass on "Elvenpath"
Turunen, Tarja: Vocals
Hietala, Marco: Bass on Tracks 1, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9 & 16 and Vocals on Tracks 1, 4, 9 & 16
Nevalainen, Jukka: Drums & Percussion
Vnsk, Sami: Bass on Tracks 2, 3, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 & 15

with
Kakko, Tony: Backing Vocals on "Over the Hills and Far Away"
Vil, Ike: Kinslayer Voice on "The Kinslayer"
Hardwick, Sam: Dead Boy's Voice on "Dead Boy's Poem" and Spoken Word on "Bless the Child"

Joensuu City Orchestra on Tracks 4 & 6
London Session Orchestra on "Nemo"
Metro Voices, London: Choir on Tracks 1 & 7
Producer: Holopainen, Tuomas & Kinnunen, Tero
Mixing by: Karmila, Mikko; Kinnunen, Tero (Track 5) & Hemmi, Risto (Track 8)
Mastering by: Jussila, Mika
TRACKLIST:
Nightwish - Highest Hopes - The Best of Nightwish  CD  Cover Image
01. Wish I Had an Angel
02. Stargazers
03. The Kinslayer
04. Ever Dream
05. Elvenpath
06. Bless the Child
07. Nemo
08. Sleeping Sun (2005 Version)
09. Dead to the World
10. Over the Hills and Far Away
11. Deep Silent Complete
12. Sacrament of Wilderness
13. Walking in the Air
14. Wishmaster
15. Dead Boy's Poem
16. High Hopes

Length: 78:12
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