Nightwish Lights Up The City National Civic

By Jesse Amazeen

Being a Finnish symphonic metal band isn’t easy nowadays. Having spent two decades forging a new genre of metal, Nightwish has spawned legions of imitators. None however, have the staying power, nor the commitment to flawless performances as the original. San Jose was treated to one such performance Friday night, at the City National Civic.

Following sets by supporting acts Delain and Sonata Arctica, Nightwish took the stage, suddenly emerging from the darkness to explode with their first song, “Shudder Before the Beautiful”. Vocalist Floor Jansen wasted no time in getting up to full speed as she ripped through the opening track from their latest album, Endless Forms Most Beautiful.

This most recent release is Floor’s first with the band, having only joined Nightwish in 2012, to replace the departing Anette Olzon. Coming from the progressive metal band ReVamp, Floor is now charged with the painstaking task of recreating the vocal styles of Olzon, as well as that of their original soprano vocalist, Tarja Turunen. And she does it with ease. Displaying more of her operatic range on songs like “Storytime”, & “Nemo”, Floor easily satisfies fans of all three frontwomen.

Bless the Child VIDEO

Not to be outdone, primary songwriter and keyboardist Tuomas Holopainen, dominated stage right, sporting his trademark top hat and mysterious grin. Propelling the band through “Weak Fantasy”, complete with its taped intro by noted evolutionist Richard Dawkins, Tuomas’ melodic playing remains the hallmark of the Nightwish sound.

Bassist Marco Hietala also provided his gruff but fitting vocals to the rousing strains of “I Want My Tears Back”, a wistful song of innocence lost. The evening’s only track from 2007’s Dark Passion Play was the spacious and melodic “Sahara”.

Though not a sold-out crowd, the energy was high for the duration of the show, and Nightwish seemed tireless in pleasing fans with more favorites, like “Stargazers” and “Last Ride of The Day”. Closing the show out with “The Greatest Show on Earth”, it’s easy to see why this band is so well-loved on the world stage, regardless of their popularity with American audiences.


Shudder Before the Beautiful
Yours Is an Empty Hope
She Is My Sin
My Walden
While Your Lips Are Still Red
Weak Fantasy
Bless the Child
I Want My Tears Back
Ghost Love Score
Last Ride of the Day
The Greatest Show on Earth[/fusion_text]