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Amorphis- Black Winter Day EP (Review)

Updated on February 9, 2012
The cover of the EP.
The cover of the EP. | Source

Title: Black Winter Day (EP)

Artist: Amorphis

Year: 1995

Score: 90/100

“Like a Dark Night in Autumn… A Black Winter Day!”

"Black Winter Day" is the EP that followed the release of the legendary "Tales from the Thousand Lakes" album. The opening track, “Black Winter Day”, had already appeared on the aforementioned album. It is an excellent song, and one of my favorites from Amorphis. It’s ultra melodic, yet very heavy and muddy sounding (in a good way). The keyboard and guitar riffs are very memorable, and they interplay with each other nicely. The shift between harsh and clean vocals works very well in this particular song, despite the clean vocals being rather weak.

“Folk of the North” is a short instrumental piece that is mainly driven by pianos. Eventually, the heavy guitars kick in but they play a rhythmic role in this song. Also notable is the use of what I think is a clean guitar with a wah effect on it. This clean guitar, in particular, gives this interlude a happier vibe than the rest of the songs on the EP. “Moon and Sun” follows, and it is another great song. The opening riff has a lingering quality to it, and it is pretty memorable. There are also little bits with atmospheric sounding synthesizer parts. There’s a bit of a doom metal feel here, and the song is more straightforward and less melodic than “Black Winter Day”. Additionally, it does not feature the clean singing.

“Moon and Sun, Part 2” opens with a synthesizer, which is then followed by the guitars. The synthesizers at the beginnings seem to have a neat little echo effect on them, which gives a nice little atmosphere. In addition, the opening guitar riff is lovely and one of most memorable and catchy from this point in the band’s career. The vocal delivery is also catchier than in the previous song. A few piano interludes under the vocals give this song a unique character. In fact, it is probably better than the first “Moon and Sun” song. The riffs are much more memorable, and the beginning sticks with me much longer. The pianos at the end remind me a bit of “Black Winter Day”. Perhaps, this was intentional. “Moon and Sun, Part 2” is a more than fitting close to the EP.

I find this to be a wonderful release, yet not really worth seeking out. The good news is that that the three songs unique to the EP are included on the reissue of "Tales from the Thousand Lakes" (along with a cover of “Light My Fire” by The Doors). The two (excluding the instrumental) new songs are excellent and hold their own along with the rest of the preceding album. A great EP!

Best songs: All of them!

This review was originally posted by me at:

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