“metal is just noise and screaming”… or… you know…
dozens of layers of different instruments and melodies combined to majestic awesomeness.
01. Awaken from The Dark Slumber – Spring
02. The Forest That Weeps – Summer
03. Eternal Darkness – Autumn
04. Loneliness – Winter
Let me start by stating this: if you don’t understand this album, forget waiting for “Time II”, it won’t be your over-the-top thing and will only bring you even more confusion about the direction the band took during all these years of songwriting.
Coming between “Time I” and supposedly “Time II”, “The Forest Seasons” is the “intermission” the band wanted to do, showcasing their current vision on sound and song composing.
You don’t have another “Beyond the Dark Sun” and for sure the band won’t do the “plug and play” song writing so soon. The fast-catchy tunes are gone, even the melodic leads had suffered a cut-out from the composition, giving place to orchestral elements and chorus.
The band pooled together 4 themes fans didn’t request, neither were expecting, but the offer of remasters of both their self-titled album and its subsequent “Time I” during a campaign to financing the creation of their own studio has gone quite well for Wintersun, raising in more than $450.000, making “The Forest Seasons” almost a gift of thank-you for the fans and everyone that supported their campaign.
In under 60 minutes and 4 songs only, “The Forest Seasons” grows bigger and larger as the listener give in to it. It will not be your fast consumable album that you listen for a week and forget in the shelf. It requires an above average dedication to the style to understand how big this “little” 4 song assembly is, comparing to the noise coming out every other month from albums with more than double the tunes in the track list.
It doesn’t sound much fresher than “Time I” but it refreshes the need for more music from Jari´s conceptual mind. It doesn’t even try to be better than its predecessor, but shouts out the pointed failing details of it, filling the gap.
Mix/Mastering related, the epic vibe is still in their instrumental components and the voice is just too great to put in words. Jari is screaming his lyrics with an awesome feeling. However, the guitars get a bit lost during more aggressive drum sequences, and composition wise, some of the great riffs are missing due to extended verses where the band tries to get away from the old “verse-bridge-chorus-solo” songwriting. This one will get them a hard time with the few that like to understand their music at first listen.
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Personally, I don’t believe that anyone who gives a bad rep to this album will not come back to give it another try. After 4-5 bands with their fast-consumable tiresome songs, Wintersun´s “The Forest Seasons” will be still pounding those simple minds that are hungry for something more.
Being enormous but not pretentious, secretively improves its intended audience to a domain of imagination and composing excellence. An entangled symphonic metal with solid instrumentation in a somewhat unexpected method of magnificence.
But be careful Wintersun, dragging the song to the point of tedious listening will make you lose some fans. A cut and change in due “Time” will be needed or the future might become a grey shadow of all your past song writing. “Time II” might not “Awake from the Dark Slumber” and instead head to “The Forest That Weeps.”
Anyways, Wintersun is not your happy meal band. If you fail to understand the band´s concept of a good album, you will be just wasting your “Time”, pun intended.
Line-up / Musicians
Jari Mäenpää – vocals and guitars
Teemu Mäntysaari – guitars and backing vocals
Jukka Koskinen – bass and backing vocals
Kai Hahto – drums
Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Label: Nuclear Blast Records