AMORPHIS – Skyforger
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Release: May 29  2009
By: Haris
Rating: 10/10
Time: 47:42
Style: Progressive Metal
URL: Amorphis

AMORPHIS are the living proof of the fact that changing the singer doesn’t have to be accompanied with a loss of quality, which usually is most painful for the fans. The “new singer” Tomi made his brilliant debut with Eclipse, while the band reached extremely high-class regions in the vein of Elegy with Silent Waters and now, quasi as superlative, comes Skyforger.
Forgotten are the times, when AMORPHIS performed just well (Tuonela) or even boring, psychedelic Alternative Rock (Am Universum, Far From The Sun). Esa Holopainen (lead guitar) highlighted often enough the fact, how important the singer switch itself and especially Tomi as an immensely talented singer, musicians and songwriter (Tomi is among others playing the guitar in the excellent band Corpse Molester Cult which plays flawless early 90ies Swedish Death Metal) was for the further existence respectively the return to the previous top form of AMORPHIS.
The overwhelming joy of playing of the Finns can be let on about each single note on Skyforger, which was not self-evident in the pre-Joutsen-era. Esa is motivated to the core and comes up with the best hook lines since Elegy apparently just like that (From The Heaven Of My Heart, From The Earth I Rose or My Sun) and solos more technical (first, Santeri brings a great keyboard solo in Sky Is Mine before sensai Holopainen tops that with the best solo on Skyforger) and more feelingly (Highest Star) than ever before. It gets really dark in Majestic Beast and Tomi once more makes clear what an outstanding singer he is. No matter if its goose bumps melodies, rough shouts or finest Death Metal growling. He may let off steam to the hilt in this and the title song as well.
AMORPHIS succeeded to record an album full of highlights with Skyforger and they have presented an unsolvable task to the remaining two band of the triumvirate of melancholy, Anathema and Katatonia, who are conspicuous by either irrelevance (Hindsight) or chronic listlessness (Katatonia pigeonholed in favor of the more successful project Bloodbath?). For after the pleasure of having a scarcely over 45 minutes lasting eargasm, the author of these lines is sure about the following: EACH album which reaps the title album of the year 2009 has to cope with this album.
Finally: Skyforger queues for me in second place in the band’s discography straight behind Tales From The Thousand Lakes, but in front of Elegy. And as both are 10-point albums, Skyforger also gets the well-deserved highest rating.