Wednesday, October 3, 2012

End of Another Era

Most Nightwish fans are likely, familiar with the DVD entitled End of an Era, which is a recording of a concert the band performed at Hartwall Areena in Helsinki on October 21, 2005. It was the final concert of a world tour and the last time that group founding member and vocalist extraordinaire Tarja Turunen, performed as a member of Nightwish. The DVD's title is more than appropriate as Tarja's talents were a crucial part of the group's success. Her departure certainly did mark the end of an era, and it must have been difficult to find someone who capable of taking her place.

Eventually, the guys chose Anette Olzon, a Swedish vocalist who has performed with several different bands. Although not an operatic singer, as is Tarja, Anette brought a very soulful flavor to the group's sound and has a talent for making songs that Tarja originally performed her own.  

The first album featuring the voice of Anette Olzen was released in 2007. Dark Passion Play brought the troupe back into the forefront and demonstrated that, with Anette's efforts, Nightwish would not be relegated to the annals of rock n' roll history. 

On November 30, 2011, the group released an album I can only refer to as a masterpiece. When I listen to Imaginaerum, I feel like I'm engulfing myself in a 74-minute classical music piece as opposed to a collection of songs put on a CD. Anette absolutely shines on that album; and after first listening to it, I came to the conclusion that she fully had integrated into the group and had earned her rightful place as a contributor to the genius that is Nightwish--and then this afternoon happened!

I was watching a live performance from their appearance at the Masters of Rock Festival, which took place earlier this year. For whatever reason, I decided to quickly read up on Anette; so I opened another tab and went to Wikipedia. Imagine my shock when they described her as "the former lead vocalist of Finnish symphonic metal band Nightwish."  

This has got to be some type of Wikipedia screwup, I thought to myself. How could it not be? After all, they're touring and will be playing in nearby Oklahoma City in a few days. I went to the group's website and found the following press release: 

"Another chapter of the Nightwish story has ended today. Nightwish and Anette Olzon have decided to part company, in mutual understanding, for the good of all parties involved.

"In recent times it has become increasingly obvious that the direction and the needs of the band were in conflict, and this has led to a division from which we cannot recover.

"Nightwish has no intention of cancelling any upcoming shows, and as a result we have decided to bring in a substitute vocalist starting in Seattle 1.10.2012. Her name is Floor Jansen from The Netherlands (ex-After Forever, ReVamp), and she has graciously stepped in to help us complete the Imaginaerum world tour.

"We are all strongly committed to this journey, this vehicle of spirit, and we are sure that this will lead to a brighter future for everyone.

"We forever remain excited about the adventures to come, and we are extremely proud of the two beautiful albums and the wonderful shows we shared together."

- NIGHTWISH & Anette Olzon

I'm glad that Nightwish is continuing with it's world tour and Floor Jansen is an excellent choice as a fill in. Still, I really feel sick at heart tonight. Good bye Anette! No matter what happens next, you will be missed. 


  1. I have been listening to Imaginaerum all this week on the drive in to work. Brought tears to my eyes a couple of mornings (seriously)! I was just thinking how much I enjoy their music, which I never seem to tire of. I guess I should consider myself fortunate to have seen them live with Anette a few years ago... Let's hope it's not the end. :o(

  2. I am still waiting for the Imaginaerum Cd to come from Amazon following your recommendation, I`m looking forward to it.

  3. Well, I hope that you'll appreciate it as much as I do App'y. I really do consider it a work of genius.

  4. Nightwish really is a good band and it's always sad to see members you've come to recognize leave it, because it's never the same. -Midi

  5. You're right Midi, it never is the same. I was amazed at how well the band's musical arrangements adopted to Anette's voice and style. Now, they'll have to do it all over again.