Favourite albums


27 Nov 2010, 17:44

Meant as an indication of my current taste (not that it has changed a real lot in the past few years, compare my profile on Pandora). These are all albums that I really, honestly enjoy without having to force myself or anything. I tried to limit the list to a single album per artist, but indicated cases where I found it really hard to decide.

Note that in most cases, I'm not familiar with the artist's entire back catalogue, so I'm probably missing out on a lot of great albums that I'd agree are better than the ones I'm listing here, so I'm far from claiming that those are the artist's best work overall in every case, but I'm confident that every album is a decent representation of the artist's work. Also note that I've left out a few albums that are still too new for me in my opinion to judge whether they belong into a list of all-time favourites. This is part of the reason why this list is slightly biased towards older albums, but not the only reason, as I do find myself preferring the early work of established acts in many cases.

Also, needless to mention that this list is pure subjectivity and makes no pretensions to work as a best-of list in anything, nor are these recommendations!

Abydos - Abydos
Adagio - Sanctus Ignis
After Forever - Prison of Desire
Amberian Dawn - The Clouds of Northland Thunder
(but I love River of Tuoni, as well)
Andromeda - Extension Of The Wish
(especially the new version with David Fremberg, Extension Of The Wish - The Final Extension)
Angra - Temple of Shadows
Ayreon - Universal Migrator, Pt. 1: The Dream Sequencer
Beto Vázquez Infinity - Beto Vázquez Infinity
Blind Guardian - Nightfall in Middle-Earth
Borknagar - Empiricism
Draconian - Turning Season Within
Dream Theater - Images and Words
(but I love all their 90s stuff, especially Metropolis Pt. 2: Scenes from a Memory, and even enjoy their debut loads; on their more recent albums I like mostly the epics, the rest not so much, although Black Clouds & Silver Linings was better)
Dreamscape - 5th Season
Edenbridge - MyEarthDream
Effloresce - Shades of Fate (EP)
Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Tarkus
Empyrium - Weiland
Epica - The Divine Conspiracy
(but I can't really decide between this one and Design Your Universe)
Fates Warning - A Pleasant Shade Of Gray
Finntroll - Visor Om Slutet
(by the way, their demo is really cool :mrgreen:)
FrameshiftUnweaving the Rainbow
The Gathering - Nighttime Birds
The Gourishankar - 2nd Hands
Haggard - Eppur Si Muove
(And Thou Shalt Trust... The Seer is great, too)
Jethro Tull - Thick as a Brick
Kamelot - The Black Halo
(and Epica, being the first part of the concept, of course ...)
King Crimson - In the Court of the Crimson King
Lana Lane - Queen of the Ocean
Leaves' Eyes - Vinland Saga
(I think I like it a tad better than Njord)
Liquid Tension Experiment - Liquid Tension Experiment 2
(a little better than their first one, I think)
Kiko Loureiro - No Gravity
(but Universo Inverso is awesome especially considering it's not normally the kind of music I listen to)
Luca Turilli - Prophet of The Last Eclipse
(King of the Nordic Twilight is great fun, too)
Lumsk - Troll
Marillion - Season's End
Moonsorrow - Kivenkantaja
(although I enjoy all their stuff I know, including the demo Tämä Ikuinen Talvi)
Nightwish - Oceanborn
Noche Escandinava II - A Finnish evening from Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 24th 2004
Opeth - Damnation
(if this one doesn't count because it's softer that their usual stuff, I'll choose Blackwater Park)
Orphaned Land - Mabool
Planet X - Quantum
Queen - Innuendo
Queensrÿche - Operation: Mindcrime
Rhapsody of Fire - The Frozen Tears Of Angels
Sabaton - Primo Victoria
Scorpions - World Wide Live
(OK, OK, this is a live album, but I don't have most of their studio albums and Sting In The Tail would be a bit too obvious, wouldn't it? :D)
Sethian - Into the Silence
Sieges Even - Paramount
Sinergy - Beware the Heavens
(or Suicide By My Side? damn, can't decide, all their albums are great!)
Sirenia - At Sixes and Sevens
Sonata Arctica - Ecliptica
Symphony X - The Odyssey
(because I can't decide between V: The New Mythology Suite, The Divine Wings Of Tragedy and Twilight In Olympus :P)
Tarja - What Lies Beneath (Limited Version, German)
(I do enjoy My Winter Storm, though, especially the acoustic and semi-acoustic songs, as well as Henkäys ikuisuudesta, especially Kun henkäys ikuisuutta)
Therion - Gothic Kabbalah
(so that I won't have to choose between Lemuria and Sirius B ...)
Tiamat - Wildhoney
Tristania - Beyond the Veil
(again, only a slight edge over Widow's Weeds ...)
Turisas - The Varangian Way
Visions of Atlantis - Eternal Endless Infinity
(I know, not exactly a masterpiece, but FUN) (oh, and a FANTASY CONCEPT BASED ON A NA^W MERMAID!)
Wintersun - Wintersun
Wishbone Ash - Argus
Yes - Yessongs
(again a live album because I just can't decide ... although for studio albums, I think I'd choose Close to the Edge - or perhaps The Yes Album?)

Bunch of single songs that aren't on any of those albums but that I'd found worth mentioning nevertheless (a far from complete list, of course, since I keep discovering awesome songs, sometimes even on albums that I've listened to several times before ...):

Sonata Arctica - White Pearl, Black Oceans...
Dream Theater - A Change of Seasons
Nightwish - The Siren
Nightwish - Lappi
Nightwish - FantasMic
Nightwish - Ghost Love Score
Eternal Tears of Sorrow - Red Dawn Rising
Opeth - Harvest
Opeth - Epilogue
Dream Theater - The Silent Man
Sieges Even - What's Up God
Dream Theater - The Best of Times
Tarja - Enough
Avantasia - The Glory of Rome
Edenbridge - Cheyenne Spirit
Edguy - The Headless Game
Children of Bodom - Children of Bodom
Shape of Despair - Night's Dew
Angizia - Der Kirschgarten oder Memoiren an die Stirn der Kindeszeit
Diablo Swing Orchestra - Balrog Boogie
Diablo Swing Orchestra - D'angelo
The Mars Volta - L'Via L'Viaquez
Jethro Tull - Bungle In The Jungle
Jethro Tull - Too Old To Rock'n'Roll, Too Young To Die
Jethro Tull - Minstrel in the Gallery
Blackmore's Night - Under A Violet Moon
Loreena McKennitt - The Bonny Swans
Liv Kristine - In the Heart of Juliet
Leaves' Eyes - A Winter's Poem
Leaves' Eyes - Senses Capture
Theatre of Tragedy - Lorelei
Nuclear Blast Allstars - In The Picture (Mind Odyssey cover, BTW)
Manowar - Master of the Wind
DragonForce - Through the Fire and Flames
While Heaven Wept - Vessel
While Heaven Wept - Of Empires Forlorn
HammerFall - Raise The Hammer
Jens Johansson - Straffpolska från Sudan

List of releases I own (probably incomplete as I'm bound to forget stuff):

Full albums and EPs:

After Forever - Invisible Circles
Amberian Dawn - River of Tuoni
Amberian Dawn - The Clouds of Northland Thunder
Amberian Dawn - End of Eden
Amberian DawnCircus Black
Angra - Temple of Shadows
Atheme One - Promo 2006
Avantasia - The Metal Opera
Avantasia - The Metal Opera Pt. II
Beto Vázquez Infinity - Beto Vázquez Infinity
Carolina EyckTheremin
Diablo Swing Orchestra - Sing Along Songs for the Damned & Delirious
Dream Theater - When day and dream unite
Dream Theater - A Change of Seasons
Dream Theater - Octavarium
Dream Theater - Black Clouds & Silver Linings
Edenbridge - MyEarthDream
Effloresce - Shades of Fate (EP) (a present from the band)
EffloresceComa Ghosts (special edition)
Emerson, Lake & Palmer - Then & Now (live album)
Epica - The Phantom Agony
Epica - Consign to Oblivion
Epica - The Divine Conspiracy
Epica - The Classical Conspiracy (live album)
Epica - Design Your Universe
EpicaRequiem for the Indifferent
The Gourishankar - 2nd Hands
Kamelot - Poetry for the Poisoned
Liv Kristine - Deus Ex Machina
Leaves' Eyes - Vinland Saga
Leaves' Eyes - Meredead
Liquid Tension Experiment - Liquid Tension Experiment
Liquid Tension Experiment - Liquid Tension Experiment 2
Kiko Loureiro - No Gravity
Kiko Loureiro - Universo Inverso
Magica - Wolves & Witches
Nightwish - Angels Fall First
Nightwish - Oceanborn
Nightwish - Wishmaster
Nightwish - Over the Hills and Far Away (EP)
Nightwish - Century Child
Nightwish - Once (limited edition)
Noche Escandinava II - A Finnish evening from Buenos Aires, Argentina, April 24th 2004
Nota Profana - The Lake (Demo) (EP) (a present)
Orphaned Land - The Neverending Way Of ORwarriOR
Patricia Petibon - Amoureuses (the tracks on which I always scrobble under the name of the composer)
Queensrÿche - Operation: Mindcrime
Rhapsody of Fire - The Frozen Tears Of Angels
Rhapsody of Fire - The Cold Embrace Of Fear (EP)
Sabaton - Primo Victoria
Scorpions - Sting In The Tail
Sinergy - Beware the Heavens
Sinergy - To Hell and Back
Sinergy - Suicide By My Side
Sonata Arctica - Silence
Symphony X - The Divine Wings Of Tragedy
Symphony X - Twilight In Olympus
Symphony X - V: The New Mythology Suite
Symphony X - Live On The Edge Of Forever (live album)
Symphony X - The Odyssey
Symphony X - Paradise Lost
Tarja - Henkäys ikuisuudesta
Tarja - My Winter Storm
Tarja - My Winter Storm (special fan edition)
Tarja - What Lies Beneath (limited edition for Germany)
Therion - Gothic Kabbalah
Tristania - Illumination
Visions of Atlantis - Eternal Endless Infinity
Visions of Atlantis - Trinity
XandriaNeverworld's End
Yes - Tales from Topographic Oceans

Also all the OST CDs from Xena: Warrior Princess and Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, composed by Joseph LoDuca, and a bunch of random stuff, such as Vienna Symphonic Orchestra Project - VSOP 7 (1996), a longplayer which contains instrumental orchestral arrangements of popular hit songs. There's also a CD I received as a present from a Finnish friend, containing recordings of old people reciting parts of the Kalevala made at various points in the 20th century.


Nightwish - From Wishes to Eternity
Nightwish - End of Innocence
Nightwish - End of an Era
Tarja Turunen & HarusIn Concert Live At Sibelius Hall


Scorpions - The Good Die Young (download only)
Tarja - I Walk Alone (Single Edition) (2x, due to a screw-up of the vendor)
Tarja - I Walk Alone (Artist Edition) (2x, same reason as before)
Tarja - Die Alive
Tarja - I Feel Immortal

Song that deserves the title of BEST (ROCK) SONG EVER:

Queen - Bohemian Rhapsody

Music video that deserves the title of BEST MUSIC VIDEO EVER:

Peter Gabriel - Sledgehammer

List of band shirts I own:

Sinergy - Suicide By My Side
Nightwish - Once
Symphony X - The Odyssey
Amberian Dawn - River of Tuoni
Epica - The Divine Conspiracy
Tarja - My Winter Storm
Yes - just some psychedelic artwork, from the latest tour

Autographs by:

Tarja Turunen (Tarja)
Maria Ilmoniemi (Tarja)
Alex Scholpp (Tarja)
Mark Jansen (Epica)
Isaac Delahaye (Epica)
Floor Jansen (ReVamp)
Liv Kristine (Leaves' Eyes)
Heidi Parviainen (Amberian Dawn)
Tuomas Seppälä (Amberian Dawn)
Emil Pohjalainen (Amberian Dawn)
Kasperi Heikkinen (Amberian Dawn)
Tommi Kuri (Amberian Dawn)
Joonas Pykälä-Aho (Amberian Dawn)
Andy Kuntz (Vanden Plas)


  • wingkon

    I quite like The Divine Conspiracy. Couldnt get into Sixes and Sevens though

    29 Nov 2010, 10:09
  • florianblaschke

    Teri: It's very different from their other stuff (not that I don't enjoy their specific brand of humppa-influenced black metal with symphonic influences and a healthy dose of humour). It's not metal at all, it's more like atmospheric folk with synth backing, but wonderfully evocative. But it's music to chill out and dream away, not rock out and headbang to.

    29 Nov 2010, 17:32
  • florianblaschke

    Yeah. I'm sure you'll enjoy the album. I take it you haven't listened to it yet?

    2 Dic 2010, 21:44
  • ZadionApocalaya

    "Kamelot - The Black Halo" "Opeth - Damnation" "Orphaned Land - Mabool" Yes! +100000 for this. Only possible thing I can disagree with is that I think Ecliptica is Sonata Arctica's worst album.

    15 Ene 2012, 3:09
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