Rating:
9.0
Nightwish - Century Child
24 February 2002


01. Bless The Child
02. End Of All Hope
03. Dead To The World
04. Ever Dream
05. Slaying The Dreamer
06. Forever Yours
07. Ocean Soul
08. Feel For You
09. Phantom Of The Opera
10. Beauty Of The Beast
    1 - Long Lost Love
    2 - One More Night To Live
    3 - Christabel
11. The Wayfarer [bonus]
12. Lagoon [bonus]
13. Bless The Child [edit] [2007 Spinefarm re-release bonus]
14. End Of All Hope [live] [2007 Spinefarm re-release bonus]
15. Dead To The World [live] [2007 Spinefarm re-release bonus]


It's really difficult, if not impossible for my not so great musical maturity, to choose a best Nightwish album, and it's also thankless to do so in my opinion. But... if the world depended on a straightforward answer to the question "Which is your favourite Nightwish album?" I would probably have to say Century Child is that album. Century Child is definitely a departure from Nightwish's original power metal roots. (Despite what people say about the "new era" that Anette brought with her to the sound of Nightwish, that new era was born in Century Child; Dark Passion Play doesn't differ that much in sound from Once for example; only the change of vocalist obviously makes the difference, but the vocal lines written for the album are not that distant from what the band had been doing since 2002 when the band gradually started distancing itself from that operatic vocal register that became a sort of stamp the band had almost become forced to live with.)

Century Child is different from its predecessors both in vocal and instrumental characteristics, not to mention the lyrical themes, that until this record were much more based on fantasy stories (evident sources of inspiration for Tuomas) and a fairytale-like atmosphere. This album's lyrical themes are mainly centered on the "self" and its existential crisis in a decadent world where that self was merged into, suffering its consequences. I would go as far as to say this album is like an elegy to Innocence - A "Dead Boy's Elegy". Regarding the sound itself, Century Child tilts to a much more symphonic register that the band maintained until now, never losing their power metal foundations though. This album is a really overwhelming and pleasant surprise in a descendant phase of Nightwish's career, when all pointed to a possible departure of the band, when Tuomas and all the others were so tired, worn and aghast by this business which can be degrading if you lose control of it. Century Child is, in my modest opinion, a really artistic album with a hugely pessimistic and outrageous tone to it caused by the depressing feeling we all get when sensing an apparent "end of the line" which brings a sorrowful nostalgia with it.

The first four songs of the album would be enough to make it memorable - catchy choruses, great orchestrations, vocals once again majestically performed by Tarja and, of course, the great voice of Marco Hietala! Then the heaviest song of the album pops up: "Slaying the Dreamer" one of the heaviest songs Tuomas has ever written. After three more songs that make it sure not to fall into oblivion, comes the fantastic cover of "Phantom of the Opera", whose vocals are sublimely performed by Tarja and Marco. And to conclude in magnificence, the 10-minute epic "Beauty of the Beast".

Highlights: "End Of All Hope", "Dead to the World", "Slaying the Dreamer" and "Beauty of the Beast"

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 9


Band profile: Nightwish
Album: Century Child


 


written by ChainOfSorrow | 13.12.2011


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Guest review by
marco

Rating:
7.5
So here it is, the long awaited sequel to Wishmaster and it delivers the same power package but is it really something new? The clear answer is no because all the songs that Century Child delivers are already done on Oceanborn and Wishmaster. When you have an angel then you definetely need a Devil . The best aspect is that Nightwish's bass player Marco Hietala sings on this album.

Read more ››
published 11.09.2003 | Comments (8)



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Zenzero - 14.12.2011 at 05:46  
Great album, but my favourite still remain Once!
Jason W. - 14.12.2011 at 08:03  
You are right in pointing out all the changes that began on this album - many of which are still present in Nightwish's music to this day. But it's exactly those differences that made me feel let down by this album at the time of its release, saved only by the great track "End Of All Hope." Starting with this album, Tuomas's songwriting may have become more diverse, but the tension & fury that existed in how he played on Oceanborn & Wishmaster never returned.
Troy Killjoy - 14.12.2011 at 08:05  
The only song I remember from this is "End of All Hope", and from what I remember I didn't really enjoy it.
ErnilEnNaur - 14.12.2011 at 08:32  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 14.12.2011 at 08:05

The only song I remember from this is "End of All Hope", and from what I remember I didn't really enjoy it.


End Of All Hope was one of the weakest songs on the album actually.
Troy Killjoy - 14.12.2011 at 08:35  
Written by Guest on 14.12.2011 at 08:32
End Of All Hope was one of the weakest songs on the album actually.

I have a tendency to remember the best or worst of things. In this case evidently I remembered the worst, but I know even if the other songs are better this album won't do anything for me.

I still can't explain what about Once I like that I dislike about every other Nightwish album. Maybe it's just nostalgia.
M C Vice - 14.12.2011 at 09:42  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 14.12.2011 at 08:35

Written by Guest on 14.12.2011 at 08:32

I still can't explain what about Once I like that I dislike about every other Nightwish album.

Ghost Love Score and that song in Finnish (title means death makes the artist)?
Troy Killjoy - 14.12.2011 at 10:03  
Quote:
Ghost Love Score and that song in Finnish (title means death makes the artist)?

I actually like all of the songs, but ya... Ghost Love Score is really mesmerizing and even somewhat depressive - all grandiose epic bombastic elements aside.

I dunno, the entire album seemed to mix aggression and sorrow really well, at least to me. Songs like Nemo, The Siren, Romanticide, and Planet Hell still get the odd play on YouTube if I'm feeling in the right mood.
mariano - 14.12.2011 at 14:36  
Not my favorite Nightwish album. Ever Dream is probably the song I like the most... but damn, how great sounded the band those days and how far is Imaginaerum from that
Super_Greg - 14.12.2011 at 17:14  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 14.12.2011 at 10:03

Quote:
Ghost Love Score and that song in Finnish (title means death makes the artist)?

I actually like all of the songs, but ya... Ghost Love Score is really mesmerizing and even somewhat depressive - all grandiose epic bombastic elements aside.

I dunno, the entire album seemed to mix aggression and sorrow really well, at least to me. Songs like Nemo, The Siren, Romanticide, and Planet Hell still get the odd play on YouTube if I'm feeling in the right mood.


Im the same way, i think I've enjoyed Once more than any of their other albums
ErnilEnNaur - 14.12.2011 at 17:57  
Written by Troy Killjoy on 14.12.2011 at 10:03

I dunno, the entire album seemed to mix aggression and sorrow really well, at least to me. Songs like Nemo, The Siren, Romanticide, and Planet Hell still get the odd play on YouTube if I'm feeling in the right mood.


I can understand The Siren and Planet Hell, but Romanticide? Nemo? What the hell man? I'm a huge fan and even I dislike those two songs In my opinion, "Master Passion Greed" is what Slaying The Dreamer and Romanicide should have been.
Milena - 14.12.2011 at 18:29  
I would go as far as to say this album is like an elegy to Innocence - A "Dead Boy's Elegy"

Yeah, and 2002 was the last time when it was acceptable for this band, methinks. Nice review, I can tell you're a fan but you're not overdoing it.
M C Vice - 15.12.2011 at 06:43  
Written by Guest on 14.12.2011 at 17:57

Written by Troy Killjoy on 14.12.2011 at 10:03

I dunno, the entire album seemed to mix aggression and sorrow really well, at least to me. Songs like Nemo, The Siren, Romanticide, and Planet Hell still get the odd play on YouTube if I'm feeling in the right mood.


I can understand The Siren and Planet Hell, but Romanticide? Nemo? What the hell man? I'm a huge fan and even I dislike those two songs In my opinion, "Master Passion Greed" is what Slaying The Dreamer and Romanicide should have been.

C'mon, Romantacide's a great song. And apparently its never been played live, at least according to wikipedia.
The Shape 1973 - 15.12.2011 at 20:56  
My favorite Nightwish album. It was the first that I bought. Its led to me getting all of their albums now. Shame the new album is not as good. All of the songs fit well together and make an album that makes sense when you listen to the whole thing, unlike Imaginaerum which is all over the place.

The last great Nightwish album before Tuomas disappeared up his own arse.
Slinky666 - 16.12.2011 at 05:02  
This album is really well done. The vocals and chorus are super. But this music is too angelic for me.
Ernis - 18.12.2011 at 03:34  
Written by M C Vice on 15.12.2011 at 06:43

C'mon, Romantacide's a great song. And apparently its never been played live, at least according to wikipedia.

Last time I saw them live on stage, their setlist did include "Romanticide". I don't know if they ever played it on stage with Tarja but this is one of the songs that sounds better with Anette because Tarja's dramatic vocals clash with the style of this particular song. Anette can pull off a raspy or edgy sound more suitable for that kind of song. This is probably the reason why they didn't perform it with Tarja.

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