New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Here you can talk about Stratovarius and related bands. Language used is English.
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ZenithMC
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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Fri Sep 27, 2019 4:42 am

Empathica1928 wrote:Now if I recall correctly Tolkki once said he blended in sampled drums from some VST whose name I can't recall, to give Jorg's drums that much more punch, but I don't know how true that is.
Samples were employed on those albums, without a doubt, and they were probably used in conjunction (blended in) with the actual recorded performance as well. Now, I don't say that with a negative connotation; I say that because, based on my own experience, it is the only way that the drum hits maintain such a consistent power and velocity (either that, or I suck at playing drums :lol:). I personally think that it sounds really cool.

In regards to my own production, I've managed to (coincidentally) get my snare drum to sound similar to the snare drum in Labÿrinth's Return to Heaven Denied. While that sounds good, I still think there's room for improvement, such as blending in my own snare drum samples (which I haven't tried yet).
Empathica1928 wrote:I hope the next album continues the trend of super fast traditional double bass drumming but also has that dance-able four-on-the-floor bass drumming the band's had since Rolf joined. I really enjoy the way he plays and how he sounds on those records.
Yeah, Rolf has done a phenomenal job thus far. I really enjoy listening to his fills. Forgive my ignorance, but what do you mean by "that dance-able four-on-the-floor bass drumming" (I'm a drummer, but I'm unfamiliar with that phrase :oops:)? Which song(s) are you referring to, as an example of that?
doc_holiday wrote:8k's not going to be a thing any time soon. For games, it requires way too much horsepower. For the internet, it requires way too much bandwidth.
Maybe it will become more relevant once hardware accelerated AV1 components become more readily available. That will surely ease the performance burden (and perhaps bandwidth too) of processing 8K footage. This doesn't help with the processing of 8K resolution output from video games, however (not to mention, who on Earth has an 8K monitor? :lol:).
valo_666 wrote:I knocked up against this one today https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fxbe5MynRI0 and it made me reaffirm all of this we're talking about... how they have turned THAT MUCH from powerful, rich and vibrant in into bland and lifeless sounding of their current https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQT292b8E88
In this instance, it's not just the production that is bland and lifeless, but also the composition. It is hard to compare those two songs to each other, as they're very stylistically different.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Mon Sep 30, 2019 6:53 am

Back on topic. My demand for the next Stratovarius album: power reggae! :shock: :lol:

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by valo_666 » Mon Sep 30, 2019 11:35 am

ZenithMC wrote:
valo_666 wrote:I knocked up against this one today https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fxbe5MynRI0 and it made me reaffirm all of this we're talking about... how they have turned THAT MUCH from powerful, rich and vibrant in into bland and lifeless sounding of their current https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZQT292b8E88
In this instance, it's not just the production that is bland and lifeless, but also the composition. It is hard to compare those two songs to each other, as they're very stylistically different.
Well, place "Message from the sun" against "Victoria's Secret" instead :)

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Empathica1928 » Tue Oct 01, 2019 9:07 pm

ZenithMC wrote:
Empathica1928 wrote:I hope the next album continues the trend of super fast traditional double bass drumming but also has that dance-able four-on-the-floor bass drumming the band's had since Rolf joined. I really enjoy the way he plays and how he sounds on those records.
Yeah, Rolf has done a phenomenal job thus far. I really enjoy listening to his fills. Forgive my ignorance, but what do you mean by "that dance-able four-on-the-floor bass drumming" (I'm a drummer, but I'm unfamiliar with that phrase :oops:)? Which song(s) are you referring to, as an example of that?
Man In The Mirror and the breakdown of Halcyon Days come to mind immediately. Although now that I think about it maybe he's not kicking the drum every single beat of Man In The Mirror's verses. Regardless, I guess more broadly I'm referring to Rolf's rhythmic sensibilities in general. He has this knack for these really cool patterns and fills that complement Lauri and Matias's experimental, creative stuff (like the electronic madness in Halcyon Days) while still having some deep, heavy punch to the drums that keeps it metal. There's groove in there amongst all the Jorg Michael-style drumming and I just love his playing and the sound of his kit on these new Strato records. :)

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Wed Oct 02, 2019 1:19 pm

valo_666 wrote:Well, place "Message from the sun" against "Victoria's Secret" instead :-)
Yeah, those songs sound somewhat closer in style to each other. Ultimately, I agree that the production is not that great on Talviyö, but it could also be far worse (as some previous offerings have demonstrated).
Empathica1928 wrote:Man In The Mirror and the breakdown of Halcyon Days come to mind immediately. Although now that I think about it maybe he's not kicking the drum every single beat of Man In The Mirror's verses. Regardless, I guess more broadly I'm referring to Rolf's rhythmic sensibilities in general. He has this knack for these really cool patterns and fills that complement Lauri and Matias's experimental, creative stuff (like the electronic madness in Halcyon Days) while still having some deep, heavy punch to the drums that keeps it metal. There's groove in there amongst all the Jorg Michael-style drumming and I just love his playing and the sound of his kit on these new Strato records. :-)
Rolf's drum pattern during the Halcyon Days breakdown doesn't sound complicated, but the coordination between the hi-hats (closing and opening) and the bass drum actually requires a lot of dexterity and practice to be able to pull it off, particularly with the foot work.

I was very impressed by Rolf's playing on The Lost Saga. The pattern that he performs during most of the solo and some parts of the chorus where he (assuming 4/4) plays quarter note triplets on the snare, eighth note triplets on the bass drum, and quarter notes on the hi-hats (or sometimes ride cymbal) sounds really cool and is very uncommon.

As an aside, I'd love to hear a Matias solo album where he can go wild and unleash all of the ultra technical and complex compositional prowess that he can conjure up into it. That would be very interesting (and awesome) to hear! 8)

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Empathica1928 » Wed Oct 02, 2019 5:28 pm

Oh man I would do horrible things for a full album of Matias going wild with the fusion shred. I used to watch videos of him playing his original stuff all the time in the months leading up to Polaris's release.

Guess I'll have to revisit Jens's stuff from the 90s in the meantime.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:26 am

Empathica1928 wrote:Oh man I would do horrible things for a full album of Matias going wild with the fusion shred.
What kind of horrible things? :lol: I remember watching a video of him performing a cool medley, a while back.
Empathica1928 wrote:Guess I'll have to revisit Jens's stuff from the 90s in the meantime.
You know, I've actually never listened to Jens' solo releases, but I plan on listening to them eventually. What is your opinion of them?

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Empathica1928 » Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:52 pm

ZenithMC wrote:
Empathica1928 wrote:Oh man I would do horrible things for a full album of Matias going wild with the fusion shred.
What kind of horrible things? :lol: I remember watching a video of him performing a cool medley, a while back.
Empathica1928 wrote:Guess I'll have to revisit Jens's stuff from the 90s in the meantime.
You know, I've actually never listened to Jens' solo releases, but I plan on listening to them eventually. What is your opinion of them?
Super jazzy. Really shows off his chops in a whole new way. It's pretty awesome stuff but they're also hard listens compared to power metal. I'm a fan, though. My favorite piece, however, isn't even jazzy, it's this keyboard solo instrumental track on Heavy Machinery called Macrowaves. It's so beautiful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgKZr9zE4mg

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by adrian9 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 2:45 am

My only demand (if you could call it that) instead of fighting for not to write "a la Timo Tolkki", own that shit and make a great classic strato album, TK, JJ owns that sound as much as TT so don't be afraid of that.

sometimes I think this line-up tries too hard to distance themselves from the sound of the classic strato era, like is wrong to do it, personally I don't think so.

and yeah, Mika Jussila and Miko Karmilla gotta be on the team.

* I believe I read somewhere that Mika Jussila retired, is that true?
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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by AAAAAAAAAA » Tue Oct 08, 2019 9:20 am

adrian9 wrote: sometimes I think this line-up tries too hard to distance themselves from the sound of the classic strato era, like is wrong to do it, personally I don't think so.
Very well said.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Tue Oct 08, 2019 1:57 pm

I've been over the moon with the direction and writing of the new albums.

My only real gripe has been the production of the last two albums. As I've already said, the mix is a very personal element of an album. The mix of the last two albums is not bad, it's just different, and I most prefer the mix from the Episode and Elements albums.

About writing Tolkki-esque songs, I think the most prominent examples put out by this line-up of that were probably found in Polaris, though intermittent and occasional. The songs from the currently line-up that I can think of which sound more Tolkki-oriented are: Blind, Forever is Today, Castaway, Emancipation Suite Pt. 1, When Mountains Fall, Dragons, Kill it With Fire, and (maybe even) Giants.

If you are being pedantic, then yes, the Jens songs are actually Jens-esque, but some of his songs appear in Tolkki-era albums, so I associate that sound with said era. I also understand that some of those songs are a bit of a stretch, but whatever. Basically, the more neo-classical it is, the more Tolkki-era it sounds to me. In other cases, the songs themselves reflect an earlier Tolkki-era song.

When Mountains Fall reminds me of Forever, The first verse of Dragons reminds me of the first verse of Playing with Fire, the chorus and intro of Forever is Today remind me of chorus and intro of Heroes from the RR demo, and chorus from Emancipation Suite Pt. 1 has a more Arabic vibe like in Babylon (or even Zenith of Power). Also, the verses from Emancipation Suite Pt. 1 sound Tolkki-esque to me, but I can't quite place my finger on why...

I don't see any harm in bringing in a more Tolkki-flavor to the songwriting, but I also really love what they are currently doing.

So basically, keep being awesome, Stratovarius!
adrian9 wrote:* I believe I read somewhere that Mika Jussila retired, is that true?
I don't think he is retired. I could be wrong, but from what I saw on his Facebook page, he still seems to be active. https://www.facebook.com/mikamastering/

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Empathica1928 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 4:10 pm

I think they are embracing the old sound though. Like, My Eternal Dream is straight out the gate 90s Tolkki worship in every way, right down to the lyrical themes, and each of the albums so far has had some songs in that vein while pushing the boundaries of the new era. I really do think it's the best possible blend of styles the band could adopt. Halcyon Days for example embraces the traditional Strato sound but sounds fresh and modern. Love it.

Tastes, of course! But for my money this is the best possible timeline. :)

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by SentineLEX » Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:22 pm

There are songs on the 2009-2015 albums that sound like they could be from the classic era (none of the 3 from Enigma did in my opinion so I don't include 2018). But they can be split into two categories - those that sound like B-sides of actual songs, and those that don't. I think a lot of the earlier songs fall into the first category. When Mountains Fall sounds like it wants to be Forever, Castaway sounds like it wants to be Black Diamond, etc. Nemesis and Eternal have more songs that sound like the songs of that time without being omitations or attempts to relive the glory. I'd classify My Eternal Dream, Giants and Man in the Mirror in this group for example. I'd argue that Feeding the Fire is a better version of Paradise than Paradise is.

Maybe now that the Stratoguys sound like they can do more of the second kind of song, they'll embrace the sound and do them more often.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Empathica1928 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 8:18 pm

Hey, I love Feeding the Fire as much as the next guy, but better than Paradise?!

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Tue Oct 08, 2019 9:57 pm

I'm not really seeing or hearing the correlation between Feeding the Fire and Paradise, but that aside, I do enjoy listening to Feeding the Fire more than Paradise.

I prefer listening to Hold on to Your Dream over Paradise. Those two are musically similar, with Hold on to Your Dream serving as the archetype to Paradise.

I guess I'm just not that big a fan of Paradise, as I'd rather listen to most other songs from their discography over it. The part I like the least about it is probably the chorus. The melody there sounds grating to me.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by SentineLEX » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:14 pm

ZenithMC wrote:I'm not really seeing or hearing the correlation between Feeding the Fire and Paradise, but that aside, I do enjoy listening to Feeding the Fire more than Paradise.

I prefer listening to Hold on to Your Dream over Paradise. Those two are musically similar, with Hold on to Your Dream serving as the archetype to Paradise.

I guess I'm just not that big a fan of Paradise, as I'd rather listen to most other songs from their discography over it. The part I like the least about it is probably the chorus. The melody there sounds grating to me.
Ok maybe that one is more a lyrical/thematic connection. However to add to the comparison the two are roughly the same speed and have the same length and structure. But not as overt as When Mountains Fall or Castaway. I do agree that Hold on to Your Dream is a prototype Paradise.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by ZenithMC » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:41 pm

SentineLEX wrote:Ok maybe that one is more a lyrical/thematic connection.
Oops, I confused the lyrical themes of Feeding the Fire with Rise Above it. That's what I get for not researching before posting. :oops: Nevermind what I said before about not seeing the connection. Your point is totally valid.

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Re: New Stratovarius album: a list of demands

Post by Sth2112 » Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:23 am

I just hope it will contain great songs, choruses and melodies, and a powerful production.

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