NIGHTWISH – Once [Limited Earbook 4-CD Box Set remastered] (2021)

NIGHTWISH - Once [Limited Earbook 4-CD Box Set remastered] (2021) full

With 2004’s ”Once‘, mastermind Tuomas Holopainen let his imagination run wild – and it turned Finnish symphonic metallers NIGHTWISH into one of the biggest bands in Europe. An album that would also influence thousands of people all over the world for years to come. And for us, this is NIGHTWISH’s finest moment.
Now 2021 NIGHTWISH are releasing a freshly remastered version of the album in various formats, and the must have for the fans is this ”Once [Limited Earbook 4-CD Box Set remastered]”.
It packs ”Once” remastered on CD1, the instrumental version on CD2, a must have CD3 of Bonus tracks & rarities, while CD4 presents a previously unreleased live show from the era, surprisingly raw, really ‘live’.

For their fifth album ”Once”, for the first time Nightwish success meant they had a budget to do what so far had largely been done synthetically, and actually record with a full orchestra and choir.
This time, they had the London Session Orchestra at their disposal – you know them, they did The Lord Of The Rings soundtrack – and help from classical producer and arranger Pip Williams.

Creatively, ”Once” was staggering. Though orchestra and band weren’t a new idea – not least from Metallica, with their S&M live album – nobody had quite yet fused the two so naturally, or so skilfully, as this.
And what was remarkable was how accessible it was: Dark Chest Of Wonders, Wish I Had An Angel and Nemo were all single-length bangers, while Planet Hell showed a genuinely aggressive edge. And where the grandstanding drama did take a front seat, on Creek Mary’s Blood, Higher Than Hope and the excellent The Siren, it was almost overpowering.

But if ”Once” marked a creative and commercial high-point for Nightwish, it also heralded the end of an era. This would be the last album with singer Tarja Turunen. After she left, Tuomas said: ​“Nightwish is a scenery of my soul and I’m not ready to let go because of one person.”
It was a gamble that would save Nightwish, rather than allow the band to fall apart. Sixteen years – and, indeed, two singers – on, Nightwish remain one of Europe’s biggest metal bands.
Every album since Once has been recorded with an orchestra and choir, as Tuomas continues to prove himself as a truly singular musician, part sonic visionary, part magician.

But it was ”Once” that pushed them from being a (big) cult concern into genuine megastars, where genius collided with success and propelled them to a height from which they have yet to fall.
Highly recommended


CD 1 : Once remastered 2021
01 – Dark Chest Of Wonders (Remastered)
02 – Wish I Had an Angel (Remastered)
03 – Nemo (Remastered)
04 – Planet Hell (Remastered)
05 – Creek Mary’s Blood (Remastered)
06 – The Siren (Remastered)
07 – Dead Gardens (Remastered)
08 – Romanticide (Remastered)
09 – Ghost Love Score (Remastered)
10 – Kuolema Tekee Taiteilijan (Remastered)
11 – Higher Than Hope (Remastered)

CD 2 : Once instrumental remastered 2021
01 – Dark Chest of Wonders (Instrumental, Remastered)
02 – Wish I Had an Angel (Instrumental, Remastered)
03 – Nemo (Instrumental, Remastered)
04 – Planet Hell (Instrumental, Remastered)
05 – Creek Mary’s Blood (Instrumental, Remastered)
06 – The Siren (Instrumental, Remastered)
07 – Dead Gardens (Instrumental, Remastered)
08 – Romanticide (Instrumental, Remastered)
09 – Ghost Love Score (Instrumental, Remastered)
10 – Kuolema Tekee Taiteilijan (Instrumental, remastered)
11 – Higher Than Hope (Instrumental, Remastered)

CD 3 : Bonus tracks, rarities
01 – Live To Tell The Tale
02 – White Night Fantasy
03 – Where Were You Last Night
04 – Nemo (Video Edit)
05 – Nemo (Orchestral Version)
06 – Nemo (Singback)
07 – Nemo (Demo)
08 – Wish I Had An Angel (Demo)
09 – Ghost Love Score (Orchestral Instr. Score)
10 – Creek Mary’s Blood (Orchestral Instr. Score)
11 – Creek Mary’s Blood (Orchestral Vocal Score)
12 – The Siren (Single Edit)
13 – The Siren (Live Version)
14 – Kuolema Tekee Taiteilijan (Live Version)

CD4 : Live in the raw
01 – Dark Chest Of Wonders (Live)
02 – The Siren (Live)
03 – Ever Dream (Live)
04 – Deep Silent Complete (Live)
05 – The Kinslayer (Live)
06 – High Hopes (Live)
07 – Planet Hell (Live)
08 – Wishmaster (Live)
09 – Slaying The Dreamer (Live)
10 – Kuolema Tekee Taiteilijan (Live)
11 – Nemo (Live)
12 – Ghost Love Score (Live)
13 – Over The Hills And Far Away (Live)
14 – Wish I Had An Angel (Live)

Tarja Turunen – vocals
Tuomas Holopainen – keyboards, producer, mixing
Emppu Vuorinen – guitars, additional engineering
Marko Hietala – bass, vocals on tracks 2, 4, 6, 8, and 11
Jukka Nevalainen – drums, percussion



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