AMORPHIS

Progressive Metal / Death Metal / Melodic Death Metal • Finland
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Amorphis is a Finnish metal band started by Jan Rechberger, Tomi Koivusaari and Esa Holopainen in 1990. Amorphis absorbed and incorporated influences from many metal genres, and with time passing their sound evolved dramatically. Initially, the band was a death metal act, but with time they have evolved into making music that is more classifiable as doom metal with folk influences, and, more recently, progressive metal and hard rock, utilizing increasingly complex arrangements and a less brutal sound. Amorphis is also well known for their use of the Finnish national epic, the Kalevala, as a source for their lyrics.

History

In 1989 Jan Rechberger and Esa Holopainen played in a speed metal band Violent Solution, which Tomi Koivusaari had left the previous year to form the death metal band Abhorrence. Violent Solution slowly withered away as the musicians became interested in other things and styles of music. At this
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AMORPHIS Discography

AMORPHIS albums / top albums

AMORPHIS The Karelian Isthmus album cover 3.26 | 29 ratings
The Karelian Isthmus
Death Metal 1992
AMORPHIS Tales From the Thousand Lakes album cover 4.31 | 78 ratings
Tales From the Thousand Lakes
Melodic Death Metal 1994
AMORPHIS Elegy album cover 4.15 | 47 ratings
Elegy
Progressive Metal 1996
AMORPHIS Tuonela album cover 3.74 | 34 ratings
Tuonela
Progressive Metal 1999
AMORPHIS Am Universum album cover 3.59 | 29 ratings
Am Universum
Progressive Metal 2001
AMORPHIS Far From the Sun album cover 2.74 | 22 ratings
Far From the Sun
Progressive Metal 2003
AMORPHIS Eclipse album cover 3.82 | 37 ratings
Eclipse
Progressive Metal 2006
AMORPHIS Silent Waters album cover 3.90 | 37 ratings
Silent Waters
Progressive Metal 2007
AMORPHIS Skyforger album cover 4.05 | 47 ratings
Skyforger
Progressive Metal 2009
AMORPHIS The Beginning of Times album cover 3.82 | 42 ratings
The Beginning of Times
Progressive Metal 2011
AMORPHIS Circle album cover 3.73 | 31 ratings
Circle
Progressive Metal 2013
AMORPHIS Under The Red Cloud album cover 4.46 | 30 ratings
Under The Red Cloud
Progressive Metal 2015
AMORPHIS Queen Of Time album cover 4.40 | 17 ratings
Queen Of Time
Progressive Metal 2018
AMORPHIS Halo album cover 3.47 | 9 ratings
Halo
Progressive Metal 2022

AMORPHIS EPs & splits

AMORPHIS Privilege of Evil album cover 3.36 | 7 ratings
Privilege of Evil
Death Metal 1993
AMORPHIS Black Winter Day / Fear album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Black Winter Day / Fear
Death Metal 1995
AMORPHIS Black Winter Day album cover 3.59 | 11 ratings
Black Winter Day
Melodic Death Metal 1995
AMORPHIS My Kantele album cover 3.79 | 8 ratings
My Kantele
Progressive Metal 1997
AMORPHIS Far From The Sun / The Audio Injected Soul / Warkult album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Far From The Sun / The Audio Injected Soul / Warkult
Progressive Metal 2004
AMORPHIS Relapse Singles Series Volume 4 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Relapse Singles Series Volume 4
Death Metal 2004
AMORPHIS Martyr of the Free Word / From the Heaven of My Heart album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Martyr of the Free Word / From the Heaven of My Heart
Progressive Metal 2009
AMORPHIS Tales From Lake Bodom album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Tales From Lake Bodom
Progressive Metal 2015

AMORPHIS live albums

AMORPHIS An Evening with Friends at Huvila album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
An Evening with Friends at Huvila
Progressive Metal 2017

AMORPHIS demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

AMORPHIS Disment of Soul album cover 2.71 | 3 ratings
Disment of Soul
Death Metal 1991

AMORPHIS re-issues & compilations

AMORPHIS Story: 10th Anniversary album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Story: 10th Anniversary
Progressive Metal 2000
AMORPHIS Value Box album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Value Box
Progressive Metal 2000
AMORPHIS Chapters album cover 3.75 | 2 ratings
Chapters
Progressive Metal 2003
AMORPHIS Magic & Mayhem: Tales From The Early Years album cover 3.14 | 10 ratings
Magic & Mayhem: Tales From The Early Years
Melodic Death Metal 2010
AMORPHIS Best Of Amorphis album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Best Of Amorphis
Progressive Metal 2013
AMORPHIS His Story - Best Of album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
His Story - Best Of
Progressive Metal 2016

AMORPHIS singles (17)

.. Album Cover
3.00 | 1 ratings
Vulgar Necrolatry / Misery Path
Death Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Divinity / Northern Lights
Progressive Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Alone
Progressive Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Evil Inside
Progressive Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Day of Your Beliefs
Progressive Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Mourning Soil
Progressive Metal 2003
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
House of Sleep
Progressive Metal 2006
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Smoke
Progressive Metal 2006
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Silent Waters
Progressive Metal 2007
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Silver Bride
Progressive Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
From the Heaven of My Heart
Progressive Metal 2009
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
You I Need
Progressive Metal 2011
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Hopeless Days
Progressive Metal 2013
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Wanderer
Progressive Metal 2013
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Death Of A King
Progressive Metal 2015
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Sacrifice
Progressive Metal 2015
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Separated
Progressive Metal 2016

AMORPHIS movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
4.25 | 6 ratings
Forging The Land Of Thousand Lakes
Progressive Metal 2010

AMORPHIS Reviews

AMORPHIS Tales From the Thousand Lakes

Album · 1994 · Melodic Death Metal
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UMUR
"Tales From the Thousand Lakes" is the second full-length studio album by Finnish death metal act Amorphis. The album was released through Spinefarm Records in Finland, through Relapse Records in the US, and through Nuclear Blast Records in Europe in September 1994. It´s the successor to "The Karelian Isthmus" from 1992 and there´s been one lineup change since the predecessor as keyboard player Kasper Mårtenson has been added to the ranks, making Amorphis a quintet on this release. "Tales From the Thousand Lakes" proved to be a huge commercial success for the band and the label, and it kickstarted Amorphis international career.

While "The Karelian Isthmus (1992)" certainly is a decent quality Scandinavian styled death metal album, it´s not an album which stands out much on the scene, and had Amorphis continued down that path it´s doubtful they would have been able to make such a long and successful career from playing music. Stylistically "Tales From the Thousand Lakes" may retain some of the Scandinavian old school death metal elements of its predecessor, but Amorphis add a great deal of melody, ethnic folk atmosphere (the lyrics are inspired by the great epic book of national Finnish folklore "Kalevala"), vintage keyboards (Moog, organ), and more moderne keyboards/synths, clean vocals, and traditional heavy rock/metal influenced riff and rhythms, to their sound, which ultimately makes "Tales From the Thousand Lakes" a very different sounding album to "The Karelian Isthmus (1992)", and maybe more importantly it also sounds quite different from any other contemporary release. Other contemporary artists playing similar styles like Paradise Lost, Tiamat, Sentenced, and Cemetary, only share the heaviness and the melancholic leads and gloomy atmosphere of their music with Amorphis. Other than those features they are completely different sounding artists.

The most death metal oriented feature on "Tales From the Thousand Lakes" is arguably the growling vocals by guitarist/lead vocalist Tomi Koivusaari and even in that department there have been some changes as Amorphis have enlisted Leningrad Cowboys vocalist Ville Tuomi to sing clean vocal parts on the album. The clean vocals are not a dominant feature on "Tales From the Thousand Lakes", but they make quite an impact when they appear...maybe as a result of them appearing relatively sparsely. The use of keyboards/synths is quite dominant though and one of the defining elements of the music. The opening instrumental "Thousand Lakes" showcases this immediately, but a track like "Black Winter Day" also features dominant use of synth (moog) and on closing track "Magic and Mayhem" there´s even an electronic and psychedelic tinged techno influence. It´s a pretty interesting track when those influences are combined with the dark heavy rocking doomy death metal core sound of Amorphis.

"Tales From the Thousand Lakes" features an organic, powerful, and well sounding production, which suits the material well, and upon conclusion it´s a high quality album release by Amorphis. It´s not just a step forward for Amorphis, it´s a giant leap and a significant change of their core sound, and they really did create something unique here, which their audience clearly embraced considering the fact that the album sold a large number of copies and became Amorphis international breakthrough release. A 4 - 4.5 star (85%) rating is deserved.

AMORPHIS The Karelian Isthmus

Album · 1992 · Death Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"The Karelian Isthmus" is the debut full-length studio album by Finnish death metal act Amorphis. The album was released through Relapse Records in November 1992. Amorphis was formed in 1990 by former members of speed/thrash metal act Violent Solution and death metal act Abhorrence. Shortly after their formation Amorphis recorded the January 1991 "Disment of Soul" demo and the "Vulgar Necrolatry / Misery Path" single followed in June 1991. Four more tracks were recorded during the May 1991 recording sessions which spawned the "Vulgar Necrolatry / Misery Path" single, and the six tracks from the May 1991 recording sessions were originally meant to be released as a split with US death metal act Incantation, but the project never materialized, and therefore "The Karelian Isthmus" was Amorphis next release. The six tracks from the May 1991 recording sessions would however emerge on the December 1993 "Privilege of Evil" EP (Relapse Records). Four of the six tracks from the EP would be re-arranged, re-recorded, and included on "The Karelian Isthmus".

The music on the album is old school Scandinavian death metal with a melodic doomy touch. Amorphis have developed their sound since the early releases and have added quite a few leads and harmonies to their music. That part of the music slightly reminds me of early Paradise Lost but early releases by Swedish acts like Cemetary and Tiamat also come to mind. Already on their next album, Amorphis would include strong Scandinavian folk/ethnic elements in their music and while they are not as strong on "The Karelian Isthmus", those elements are present here too.

All tracks are of a decent quality and the musicianship is strong on all posts (although to my ears the drumming is a little stiff), but the tracks don´t stand out much, although it´s obvious which are new tracks and which are slightly more old school re-recordings of earlier material. Still when the album is playing, it´s an enjoyable listen and if you enjoy old school Scandinavian death metal you should find a lot to like here. The sound production is also quite good (recorded and mixed at Sunlight Studios, Stockholm, Sweden with producer Tomas Skogsberg), so a 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating is still warranted even though "The Karelian Isthmus" isn´t the most remarkable death metal album from the early 90s Finnish death metal scene.

AMORPHIS Privilege of Evil

EP · 1993 · Death Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"Privilege of Evil" is an EP release by Finnish death metal act Amorphis. The EP was released through Relapse Records in December 1993. The 6 tracks on the EP were already recorded in May 1991, before the recording sessions for the band´s debut full-length studio album "The Karelian Isthmus" (Relapse Records, November 1992) and were originally intended to be featured on a split with US, New York based death metal act Incantation. That split release never materialized though and 4 out of the 6 tracks on the EP were later re-arranged and re-recorded for "The Karelian Isthmus (1992)" album. "Vulgar Necrolatry" and "Misery Path" were already released as a single in June 1991, but appear here in the exact same versions.

The music on the EP is old school Scandinavian death metal. The vocals are brutal and raw and there are very few traces of the Nordic ethnic melodic lead guitar themes that would earn the band such great success just a few years later. While this isn´t old school Swedish death metal, it´s the death metal style that the music on the EP is mostly comparable to. "Privilege of Evil" has a coldness to it that is greatly enjoyable and while the tracks aren´t exactly adventurous there are still enough details and changes in the songs to keep them entertaining throughout. The quality of the musicianship is surprisingly high and the tracks are generally very well performed. The sound production suits the music well and while it´s raw and cold, it´s also detailed and well sounding.

So overall "Privilege of Evil" is a strong release by Amorphis and I fully understand why the band/label opted to release the EP a couple of years after it was originally shelved. Already this early on in Amorphis career you could hear the immense musical talent of the band. "Privilege of Evil" isn´t necessarily recommendable to fans of the band´s later output though. Old school death metal fans are the target group here. A 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating is warranted.

AMORPHIS Vulgar Necrolatry / Misery Path

Single · 1991 · Death Metal
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UMUR
"Vulgar Necrolatry / Misery Path" is a single release by Finnish death metal act Amorphis. The single was released through Relapse Records in June 1991. It´s Amorphis first label release after forming in 1990 and releasing the "Disment of Soul" demo in 1991. It was not the "Disment of Soul" demo, which got Amorphis signed by Relapse Records though. The label had heard guitarist/vocalist Tomi Koivusaari´s former band Abhorrence´s February 1990 "Vulgar Necrolatry" demo, and they contacted Koivusaari to sign Abhorrence. They didn´t realise that Abhorrence at that point had broken up a while ago, but they also showed an interest in signing Amorphis (without having heard a single note from them), on the condition that Amorphis would record a cover of the "Vulgar Necrolatry" track and include it on this single.

So the single features a cover of "Vulgar Necrolatry" (featuring Abhorrence vocalist Jukka Kolehmainen on guest vocals) and the B-side track "Misery Path". Both are raw and old school Scandinavian styled death metal tracks and both are good quality songs, which are well written, well performed, and well produced. The tracks appear in the exact same versions on the December 1993 "Privilege of Evil" EP, which chronologically was Amorphis next recording (the remaining material on the EP was recorded at the same May 1991 session as the two tracks on this single), but because of label issues wasn´t released until after the release of their debut full-length studio album "The Karelian Isthmus" (Relapse Records, November 1992).

Both tracks were also re-recorded and included on "The Karelian Isthmus", although "Vulgar Necrolatry" only appears as a bonus track on the CD version of the original release (the original vinyl version does not include "Vulgar Necrolatry"). Upon conclusion this is a decent quality single from Amorphis, but to my ears the original Abhorrence version of "Vulgar Necrolatry" features a more morbid charm. "Misery Path" is decent quality death metal song too, but it´s not a standout track. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

AMORPHIS Disment of Soul

Demo · 1991 · Death Metal
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UMUR
"Disment of Soul" is the first demo recording by Finnish death metal act Amorphis. The demo was independently released in January 1991. Amorphis was formed in 1990 by drummer Jan Rechberger and guitartist Esa Holopainen after their former band Violent Solution split-up. Former Violent Solution guitarist Tomi Koivusaari, who had spend 1990 playing and recording with Abhorrence was asked to join on guitars and vocals (Abhorrence had just disbanded), and the last piece of the puzzle was the addition of bassist Olli-Pekka Laine.

Stylistically the material on "Disment of Soul" is more or less a continuation of the raw and brutal old school Scandinavian death metal style of the Abhorrence releases, which is only natural as Koivusaari was the main composer in both Abhorrence and on the early Amorphis releases. The quality of the material and the quality of the sound production are not quite up there with the Abhorrence releases though (this at times sound more like a rehearsal demo than a demo recorded at a studio), but this was still early days for Amorphis and they would fast evolve their sound and hone their skills. Upon conclusion "Disment of Soul" is a decent quality death metal demo, but it´s not up there with the greatest contemporary Finnish demos by artists like Abhorrence, Disgrace, Xysma, Funebre, and Demigod. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

AMORPHIS Movies Reviews

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The T 666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
One of the best bands in all metal!

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