Tarja – still the ex-Nightwish???

Posted: 6. aug. 2010 in Music
Sildid:, , , , , , , ,

Warning: The following text will not be liked by die-hard Tarja fans. To avoid meaningless insults on my address please do not read the text 😉

In my last video I asked people to answer if they prefer Nightwish more with Anette or Tarja. As I said myself – I prefer it with both of the singers because I like both of their version and in the end what matters to me is the music Mr.Maestro Tuomas Holopainen composes. The musical and lyrical side of Nightwish captured my interest – not the singers voice. To be completely honest – at first when I had heard only a couple of songs and wasn’t a big fan – I didn’t like Tarja’s overly operatic vocals. But the deeper I got into the music the more I got used to Tarja’s vocals and learned to love her voice. And she has a powerful voice, take for example “Phantom Of The Opera” – I’ve never heard anybody sing it better. Then came the separation and Anette as the new singer. I liked her from the very beginning because she seemed more down to earth, communicating with the people more and her singing style made me re-assess some songs I had dissed, considering them to be not so interesting Nightwish material. I think she can sing the old songs as good as Tarja. Some songs sound with her even better like “Higher Than Hope” or “Sacrament Of Wilderness”. But some songs like “Ghost Love Score” still sound better with Tarja. So when it comes to Nightwish’s music – I’m torn between the two singers and I admire, respect and like them both.

But when it comes down to Tarja’s solo career – I honestly don’t know what she is doing. I think she is wasting her potential and her beautiful voice to become an equal to Nightwish when in reality she will never be equal to Nightwish because she doesn’t have the songwriting talent equal to Tuomas Holopainen. I know it may sound harsh but it is so – she has a beautiful and powerful voice but she lacks the talent of songwriting. Her first proper (not counting the Christmas songs album) solo album – “My Winter Storm” was at least to me with a very low quality – yes Tarja sang perfectly as always but the music wasn’t there, the lyrics were meaningless (boy, ghost, divine, little phoenixes, winter storms etc). Then the famous attempt to still be “metal” by covering a hard rock song “Poison” by Alice Cooper – it was not covering, it was destroying the old classic. But I thought maybe it’s her first album, she’s just trying out and the next one will be different. I guess I was wrong.

The new album, entitled “What Lies Beneath”, seems to be not different than the previous attempt to still be an operatic metal artist. I’ve listened to some her songs through Youtube and I realized that she has no plans to alter her image, to alter her style and to try something new musically. She is still sticking to the tried out “ex-Nightwish” singer platform holding on to her old fans and trying to be so metal with her on-stage horn-signs. And I just feel so sad because I know she could be so much more than just an “ex-Nightwish” singer. She should reinvent her stage image and stop trying to be so metal. She should be herself because if she’s not it will be seen on stage. I don’t know about other people but to me her horn-sign on stage has always seemed so fake – like she’s just showing them because it’s metal to do so. And of course it’s normal that she sings old Nightwish songs on stage – like the famous “Nemo” or “Over The Hills And Far Away”. She even did “Passion And The Opera” which was quite interesting and refreshing. But I don’t see the point of performing such Nightwish songs as “Beauty Of The Beast” – it has just so much Tuomas written on it that it seems weird that she is still singing them during her solo career. But it’s her choice of course and it’s my personal opinion.

Also – some of her songs are still about her previous band even though it’s been 5 years since their split. Some examples “I Walk Alone” (go tell the world I’m still around, I walk alone, far from the fools etc); “My Little Phoenix” (Robbed of my innocence, had no more time to play. I sure got my feathers burned, but I’m stronger than the flames.);  “Calling Grace” (She tried so hard, Every word was torn apart, Shot her down with poison darts, Her tears made a swim beneath the sea. She’s free); “The Seer” (Rumours are told about a hero kind and skilled. I’m burning at love’s stake and that’s the end I feel); basically whole lyrics of “Enough”; “Falling Awake” (In this moment I am just becoming, Liberated from my cell of nothing, No sensation there was only breathing, Overcome oblivion) and something was in “Until My Last Breath” also. Yes, Tuomas also wrote about the split in songs as “Bye Bye Beautiful” and “Master Passion Greed” but that was it – other songs on the 2007 album were not about Tarja and their split. So again – she uses her background to make music. The very same background she has claimed was “over and put behind”.

I’m not saying that everything she does is wrong or bad. Not at all. Everything she has done so far is good and decent music. And she still has so much fans and she is regaining new ones all the time. But since I wish the best to Nightwish I wish the best to Tarja also. And I really believe that she could do so much better if she only would choose another kind of path.

So that’s why  I am asking – why Tarja? Why do you still have to be ex-Nightwish singer? Why can’t you be just Tarja – wonderful soprano voiced singer? Nightwish has moved on, it’s not ex-Tarja Nightwish. Why can’t Tarja Turunen be JUST Tarja?


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