After releasing their incredible album Under The Red Cloud last year (our review can be read here), Amorphis are back with a tour edition and whilst I have to admit that I’m usually not the biggest fan of album reissues, this one is thankfully more than simply “one of those album with a couple of B-sides tacked onto the end to justify a reissue”. As well as a couple of bonus songs, this also features an extra CD containing songs from a special show of theirs they performed at Helsinki Festival in Huvila with several guest musicians, and it’s a real treat to listen to.
The two bonus songs, entitled Come The Spring and Winter’s Sleep, are a nice addition to the Under The Red Cloud album, and although it’s now a shame that the album no longer comes to a close with the epic that is White Night, the pair of songs are a good addition to the album. They’re complementary to the other, more familiar songs as they have a similar vibe to them, so as a whole they give the album an extra boost – and the keyboard solo at the end of Winter’s Sleep is phenomenal to say the least.
The live CD is top-notch and what’s so great about it is that it’s a very immersive listen – it’s almost like you’re at the concert witnessing it in person, which is surely testament to a good performance. The additional instruments utilised in the songs are used to good effect, especially the saxophone, and the reinterpretations of the nine songs are fantastic as the jazzier feel to them definitely gives them a new spin. In particular, Silver Bride is a definite highlight – the introduction will give you goosebumps as it begins, and the way the song progresses from there is so emotive and atmospheric, to the point where I’m actually tempted to say I prefer it to the original recorded version.
This is what a reissue should be. If you don’t own a copy of Under The Red Cloud then make sure you pick up this version – and even if you do own a copy, this is still a worthwhile addition to your music collection because of all the awesome extras. Absolutely awesome stuff.