The MS Awards are now into their fourth year, and every year they seem to get better! This year featured some rather standout runaway winners (such as Behemoth, Symphony X), but also some extremely close battles. In the Grindcore category, we saw Pig Destroyer and Cephalic Carnage go neck and neck most of the way. It was only in the last few days that Pig Destroyer pulled away a little and could start breathing again!
But the best tussle was in the Power Metal category. There we saw the closest result in Metal Storm history! Only one vote separated Nightwish's Dark Passion Play album and Kamelot's Ghost Opera, with the latter taking the gold. For the whole week leading up to the end it was even, Nightwish by two, then four, then Kamelot pegged them back a few votes. It was exciting stuff even if you weren't such a keen Power Metal fan! All of you out there that voted for Kamelot can think to yourselves "wow, it would've been a draw if it wasn't for my vote!". The results Nightwish came home with though were extremely interesting. Almost winning the Power Metal category, and winning the Biggest Surprise and Biggest Letdown. It seems fans were quite divided on this one!
Other interesting results were in the Folk/Viking Metal category where Korpiklaani's stranglehold on the category came to an end. The band took out the 2006 and 2005 awards, but this year were bettered by Ensiferum (the winner), Arkona, Turisas, Moonsorrow and Primordial. It seems Korpiklaani weren't quite strong enough this year! (Although it must be said it was a pretty strong year for Folk/Viking Metal!) The just mentioned Arkona were quite a surprise too. This small six year old Russian band did well for itself considering its opposition!
Winners from this year such as Dark Tranquillity, Paradise Lost, Candlemass and Kamelot are all past winners as well, so it shows that each of these bands aren't just releasing good albums as a once-off! The results for Dimmu Borgir, Machine Head, Dream Theater and Nile also prove that you, the voters, can still be objective about casting your votes. None of these bands were nominated in their respective genre, as they all let us down somehow, and the votes reflect this decision was a wise one. They all received no more than a handfull of votes, let's hope they take this message seriously, and come back with better stuff next time!
It should also be noted that we received more votes than ever. A few categories even managed to break through the 1,000 votes barrier. A nice reward for those that worked their asses off for these Awards. We hope to increase the amount of votes again next year.