Review of the Album "Visions" by Finnish Power Metal Band Stratovarius
"Visions" is a Very Good Album But it is Not as Good as Destiny
"Visions" is the 1997 studio album by Finnish power metal band Stratovarius and it is better than I thought it was! The first song Black Diamond is a song about someone that is taken by a sense of awe because the person’s eyes are so beautiful. But he knows that he cannot stand by her side forever and that he must move on with his life. There is a very good use of the keyboard sound by Jens Johansson which creates a very nice classical type of atmosphere. However, Visions is not as good as the album Destiny which would be released a year later.
Forever Free is One of the Biggest Successes for Stratovarius
Forever Free is one of the biggest strengths in terms of the songwriting in this album. The song is about being free and having the free will to do what one wants to do in their without being tied down by arbitrary rules that don’t make sense. However, the first line of the lyrics is the one that really stands out because it declares emphatically that “they” the media gave him answers to questions he has never asked. The song is also trying to express that the mainstream media is confusing the public with the stories they try to present. In a truly “free” society, people will be able to express themselves without having their arms tied up.
The Song "Forever Free"
Before the Winter: a Beautiful Ballad Song about Love
Then of course, there are more ballads, ah those lovely, lovely ballad songs. This one is called Before the Winter. It is a song about someone that is leaving his lover to go on a long journey but he reassures her that he will be back by the next summer and she will be in his arms again. As the yellow leaves of autumn start falling, he knows that this is the signal that he has to depart from the one that he loves so much. As we go through this musical journey, we or at least I notice that there is a definite Yngwie Malmsteen influence in this album because of the guitar riffing, tone, and keyboard play. Jens Johansson who played keyboards for Yngwie during the 1980’s knows a thing or two about playing an exciting style of keyboards.
The Song Called "Paradise"
Analysis of the Songs The Abyss of Your Eyes, Holy Light, and Paradise
The Abyss of Your Eyes is a song about someone that felt like he was drowning at first but he has found exactly what he had been searching for which is the love of his life. He is convinced that this will not go astray. Holy Light is a complex, yet interesting instrumental that sounds similar to the song Trilogy Suite Op. 9 by Yngwie Malmsteen. This is one more example that the Scandinavian nations are some of the elite nations of the world for neoclassical speed and power metal! Paradise is a song about the fact the planet we live in is in so much danger because of people being so selfish. If people run out of food to eat and many species become extinct, the safety of planet Earth is in jeopardy. I am glad that the band brought up the subject for thought. We only have one planet that can support human life and it is important that we wake up and realize this. The person being described as watching TV late at night cannot believe what he is seeing on the screen. Human life is so precious and short that we must take steps to make sure that our planet is safe and secure so that Mother Nature does not cry out. Selfishness can end up putting our planet in danger.
Final Thoughts About the Album Visions
Coming Home is another ballad song about someone that is far away from the one that he loves. Without his lover in his life, he does not feel the same. He describes himself as being like a ship without sails. If a ship does not have sails, it cannot sail across the ocean. Since the road has been cleared, he is on his way home.
Timo Kotipelto does not have as much power or range in his vocals as Fabio Lione but he still has the passion in his voice. Overall, Visions is a solid neoclassical power metal album and the band would get even stronger with Destiny in 1998.
"Before the Winter"
© 2017 Ara Vahanian