I would be lying if I said it didn’t give me chills and bring me to tears every time I hear Floor Jansen belt the lines “I’ll be waiting when you say, Time to never hold our love.”
I’ll admit it. I was 100% Team Tarja when Nightwish initially announced they were parting ways with their first singer. The magic of their first few albums required the power of an operatic singer like Tarja Turunen and in particular, her replacement was nothing like that. Over time I softened on that stance and even grew to appreciate the new subtleties composer Tuomas Holopainen was able to weave into the music with a totally different but equally talented voice. Until she was ousted as well…
By this point, I had almost written this band off entirely, only to consign myself to enjoying their classic sets as I have so many other bands before them.
Until I heard their current singer Floor Jansen on this masterpiece.
“Ghost Love Score” is one of Nightwish’s signature songs, almost always included in every set, done as a climax to the show. It is meant to showcase the best of the whole band in one single nearly 11 minute mini-opera in true symphonic metal fashion. But the show from Wacken this time was different… magical. Both of the other stages totally emptied to hear Floor Jansen perform as the voice of Nightwish – all 85,000 fans in attendance that day – and it can only be described as answering the call of a siren.
“Ghost Love Score” weaves an epic story of two people who were once very close but drifted apart. The vocals are dripping with every emotion of the spectrum, from happiness and contentment to pain and anger, frustration, longing and even guilt, finally to climax at the realization the person lives on even if only as a memory. There is an interlude between that can only be described as two acts – it is truly a metal opera, in the vein of Queen‘s “Bohemian Rhapsody” or Savatage‘s “Dead Winter Dead”.
I would be lying if I said it didn’t give me chills and bring me to tears every time I hear Floor Jansen belt the lines “I’ll be waiting when you say, Time to never hold our love.” Floor resurrected the greatest song of an era of Nightwish, easily one of the greatest metal epics ever written in a way not even her predecessor could compare to. I’m a fan of Nightwish all over again because of it.
Nightwish (2013 Wacken performance) are:
Tuomas Holopainen – Keyboards
Emppu Vuorinen – Guitar
Jukka Nevalainen – Drums
Marco Hietala – Bass/Vocals
Troy Donockley – Whistles/Pipes
Floor Jansen – Lead Vocals