Genre: Symphonic Metal
Country: Finland
Label: Nuclear Blast
Year: 2020

Five years have already passed since “Endless Forms Most Beautiful”. In the meantime, there were tours, live albums, DVDs and a collection that made us remember why we loved Nightwish so much from the beginning. All this makes it clear that the listening session of “HVMAN. : ||: NATVRE. ” would be performed with godly care. The album goes in descending order until it reaches the second disc, “All the Works of Nature Which Adorn the World”. The recod starts with good omen. A moving introduction, with subtle references to the cult of nature, faithfully pursuing the themes of “Endless Forms Most Beautiful”, along with naturally dynamic choruses. Within the first 15 minutes or so of the disc, crying is inevitable for someone who loves this band. The arrangements blend in well with Emppu Vuorinen’s riffs (we have to mention that he deserves a lot more attention as a musician than he already does), while the vocals are richer this time and fit better for this super-machine Floor Jansen, who brought a whole new vibe of life to the band, giving it the glamor it needed from the early years. That is, until “Shoe Maker”. “Harvest” is Troy Donockley‘s case, the band’s new superpower, who they also take advantage of at the zenith and of course in his own way, he gave the band a new musical identity. From that point on, the tracks become more simplistic and hard rocking, with a few gothic metal touches, reminiscent of the “raw diamonds” of “Endless Forms …”. As a whole, “HVMAN. : ||: NATVRE. “, at least thematically, step on its predecessor, but it is more reminiscent of “Imaginaerum” as the orchestras are more musical-ish and give a soundtrack vibe to the whole set.

As for the second part of the album, “All the Works of Nature Which Adorn the World”, it cannot be easily compared to the older, equally lengthy epics such as “The Greatest Show On Earth”, “The Poet and The Pendulum” and “Ghost” Love Score ”, because on one hand, it does not show any particular variations between its components, while on the other, it looks more like a movie score. More narrative indeed, it shows the full potential of the band in general, proving that Nightwish is not a typical metal band, however, having in mind the “Greatest Show On Earth” I can’t get used to it easily. It carries memories of “Endless Forms” more than the whole album as a while, because it is centered on the Earth, nature and man. Well, they did it again, they made us cry. Now, it will be playing on repeat for the next few months for sure.

4,5/6