LOOKING FOR YOU
Released 31st January 2020
"Never give up on your goals or your dreams
No regrets of the way you're living
You can do it
'Cause we're fighting one for all and all for one"
Finnish symphonic power metal band Amberian Dawn have been a rising sensation in Napalm Records' lineup, since Capri's arrival, transformed their sound from symphonic metal to what fans labelled them as “ABBA metal”.
Already hitting their ninth (9th) studio in their 14 year career as of 2020, the band brings in refined and immaculate songwriting full of catchy melodies and epic keyboard passages that’ll make you relive the time of the 80s but with some modern dash of metal.
Fast sonic dances of synths starts the album in the first track “United” that’s gets your body pumping to a rhythmic dance of blast beats and vocal lines. “Eternal Fire Burning” follows the fade with passionate playing of power metal guitars and shimmering synths while injecting more of the nostalgic 80s flare in the very catchy chorus.
Eternal Fire Burning
Looking for You
Symphony No. 1, Pt 3: Awakening
Go for a Ride
Lay All Your Love on Me
Cherish My Memory (Re-mastered)
Titular track “Looking for You” really delves in to the term “futurism as seen in the 80s” as Tuomas said. Going for a mid-tempo pace and a more moody atmosphere and sultry, yearning vocals by Capri expressing about sadness and loneliness while the heavy metal dances it’s way throughout the melodic verses. Next is “Two Blades”, a song about secretive love where Capri vocals soars along the burning riffs of the guitars.
Continuing their unique story about the origins of the witch from Magic Forest, “Symphony No. 1, Pt. 3: Awakening” features special guest Fabio Lione of Rhapsody. This track is a big standout in
the album as it feels like listening to a Broadway musical, delivering a cinematic and epic presence from the dramatic orchestral symphony that takes center stage in the music. Then you
remember that this is still Amberian Dawn as it picks up the power metal aspects of drums and electrifying racing pace of the guitars. The duet compliments each other of Lione's handsome tenor
voice and Capri's lovely high notes. How do you even recover from an epic track like that? More dance in “Go for a Ride” with it’s upbeat lyrics of inspiring you to fight for your while using
racetrack analogies. Sounding like a cliché, it still doesn’t change my mind on how infectious the music is.
“Butterfly” follows up in joyful melodies of exploration in life and feeling free as the choir of voices provides an angelic feel as if you’re flying in the air while being so strong and delicate like to that on the wings of a butterfly. Delivering us to the next track “Universe”, which I say is a heavy lullaby, starts of a starry-like melodic intro of Capri’s motherly singing voice as if she is putting you to sleep with her comfort. I appreciate how metal elements doesn’t overpower the ballad, giving the album more of it’s beautiful features.
Here, the day has come that Amberian Dawn has finally covered an ABBA hit song, “Lay All Your Love On Me”! Embracing their comparison to the popular Swedish group, the band executed the power metal really well while blending the chorus arrangements that is a similar take from the film “Mamma Mia!”. Said and done, the band’s fun journey of future and dance comes to an end in the instrumental track “Au Revoir” (fitting) of powerful 80s sounds. Let's not leave out the encore to the album, a remastered track from 2014’s “Magic Forest” which also serves as a bonus. “Cherish My Memory” adopts a more of heavier sound while still using the delicate symphonic sounds as intended in the original.
A great way to start a new decade with a very catchy release from the Finnish quintet, full of powerful melodic hooks, catchy chorus lines and definitely some tracks that you’ll put on repeat for a couple of hours. If you’re a fan of ABBA, then you’re going to love their modern metal equivalent in this latest album!
“Looking for You” receives a 9.5/10
Read the interview with Tuomas and Capri here!
Amberian Dawn are:
Tuomas Seppälä - keyboards, guitars
Joonas Pykälä-Aho - drums
Emil Pohjalainen - guitars
Capri Virkkunen - vocals
Jukka Hoffren - bass