From: Helsinki, Finland
Last Known Status: Active
Latest Wintersun News
Below is our complete Wintersun news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.
Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.
Finnish act Wintersun issued the track listing for the upcoming new release "The Forest Seasons." An Indigogo campaign for the album commences on March 1st (stay tuned for link). Today, vocalist/guitarist Jari Mäenpää revealed track-by-track information about each song on the release.
In a statement on Facebook, Mäenpää stated: "This album is more primitive and organic than I normally like to do, but still modern, melodic, epic, bombastic yet also dark and dare I say even shocking and we love it! It is new and different, 'cause I don´t like doing the same thing over and over, but it's still very much a Wintersun album - although Wintersun can be anything, even techno/trance/pop... There are no limits with the music of Wintersun!
"It is a longer album than 'TIME I' running over 53 minutes and for once I'm 100% happy with the sounds and the production. The sound fits PERFECTLY for this album! This album actually sounds great in every sound system/speakers/headphones I've listened to it! If you are a Wintersun fan you won't be disappointed! It has everything you would expect from a Wintersun album, that we can promise you! And if you're not a fan, you might like it anyway, because it has lot of variety and new dimensions to our sound and style.
"'The Forest Seasons' album was something that I could do with my current resources, but it doesn't take anything away how great the album is. Because it is killer! And music isn't measured in money. Album costing hundred bucks or a million bucks can be equally good albums. (But the unfortunate thing is that certain albums can only be done with higher end production and then again some albums would sound like shit with a big budget production and vice versa, some albums would sound like shit with low budget production and some albums would sound killer with low budget production!)
"The album has four epic and monumental songs, all very different, but still merging together perfectly like the season changes. Two of the songs, 'Awaken From The Dark Slumber (Spring)' and 'Eternal Darkness (Autumn)' are multipart songs like 'Starchild' and 'Sons of Winter and Stars'.
"AWAKEN FROM THE DARK SLUMBER (SPRING)
"'Awaken From The Dark Slumber (Spring)' is the starting track. It's a very energetic song illustrating the awakening of nature and it will build up to a big climax! (This song has this album's "killer riff"... forest style!) More...
Finnish symphonic epic black metal act Wintersun revealed the artwork for the upcoming new album "The Forest Seasons."
The band commented: "We're proud to show you guys our NEW 3rd full length album cover! The album cover was made in collaboration by Gyula Havancsák and Jari Mäenpää. It illustrates THE AWAKENING of a mystical forest where the seasons are merging together.
"Enjoy guys! This album is sick and minds will be blown! Our INDIEGOGO crowdfunding campaign will start on March 1st where you can order the new album DIRECTLY from us with the highest quality!"
Check out the cover here: More...
Last week Finnish group Wintersun unveiled the track list for third studio album "The Forest Seasons" that will see the light of day in 2017. This new full-length album of 53 minutes follows the concept of Vivaldi's "The Four Seasons," but will feature epic death metal on four massive tracks.
Although the album is already finished, front man and mastermind Jari Mäenpää now needs the support of his loyal fans in a way he stated a few years back would be simply impossible: there will be a Wintersun studio crowd funding campaign starting March 1st. Jari, Jukka, Kai, and Teemu issued this statement:
"During last autumn, we had long and productive negotiations with our record label Nuclear Blast and we finalized it in November 2016. We came to a good solution, a win-win deal that will benefit everyone - Wintersun, Nuclear Blast, and especially the fans! This means that we will do the crowdfunding and it will include our NEW album 'The Forest Seasons!'
"The purpose of this crowdfunding is to build the Wintersun Headquarters studio. As some of you may know this has been in the plans for a long time. It is our long time goal and dream. Building the studio is absolutely essential in order to finish 'Time II' and produce our future albums as fast as possible and with the best production. All the money we raise will go directly to Wintersun, 100%, which we will use for building the Wintersun Headquarters. More...
Wintersun recently announced the follow-up to "Time I" (reviewed here) will be a completely different album than expected titled "The Forest Seasons." The track listing has now been revealed below, and the band also comments:
"Yes, you guessed it! This album is our version of Vivaldi's The Four Seasons, but it hasn't got anything to do with Vivaldi musically or with classical music. It is 100% original and solid Wintersun material! It is something new and different. Let´s just say it has a bit more darker tone overall... ;)
"Next week you will know how we are releasing our new album so stay tuned for more details! Click those notifications ON in all our Facebook pages, you don't want to miss the important updates of our new album! (Because of Facebook algorithm reach limit)." More...
Following the "Time I" album from back in 2012 (reviewed here), Wintersun has revealed a new album is finally coming, but it won't be the long-expected "Time II." The band comments:
"Wintersun's 3rd full-length album name is... 'The Forest Seasons!' That's right folks, we'll leave you pondering a bit what this name means. Next week we'll release the album track list and everything will become very clear to you! Promise!"
It's time for another "Time" rant from Jari Mäenpää of Wintersun! After announcing a new album is coming that won't be "Time II," Jari issued this update to fans:
"Little addendum to clear some confusion about 'Time II...'
"'Time II' was already recorded the same time as 'Time I,' but the mixing of Time II came to a halt in 2014 when I realised that I could not finish the album with my resources. The album is just too big and I will not compromise and release it prematurely like I had to do with 'Time I.'
"'Time I' and 'Time II' are huge and just insane projects. They are big budget albums that I should have not probably even started working on at that point in my career. But at that time, I had a vision for those albums and that was the only music I wanted to make. So despite the lack of funding, I wanted to challenge myself and I started working on those albums with what I had...
"There were lots of technical problems and other obstacles along the way and those problems could have been solved or avoided with proper resources. Somehow I still managed to pull off at least something close to my vision for 'Time I.' I had to use time to compensate for the lack of funding and overcome the technical issues. You can literally buy money with time and buy time with money. Money = time = money. I wasn't 100% happy with the result, but the pressure was just too high to release 'Time I' and get the ball rolling. That won't happen again. 'Time II' will not be finished until I have the proper resources for it, but hopefully soon that's about to change! ;) More...
Maybe Wintersun wasn't trolling as much as we thought, as the band today announces a new album is coming... except it's not "Time II" but rather something completely different. The group issued this message online:
"It's 2017 folks and it's going to be a great year! Time for some big Wintersun news? Yes it is!
When we said that 'IT IS DONE,' we did not mean 'Time II,' but we meant a NEW ALBUM for sure! 'Time II' won´t be the next Wintersun album, because of reasons you already know from past updates and interviews.
"So what is IT? IT is a NEW ALBUM and it is 100% done! And no, that's not the name of the album. This album will be something new and different, but equally great or perhaps even better in some ways. Over 53 minutes of solid Wintersun material (with no intro tracks) and with a killer concept!
"This album will be the 3rd full-length Wintersun album. We will release the name of it soon and other details like track list etc. We're gonna start putting the pieces of the puzzle together for you guys how it's going to be released and what will happen... It will be a whole new experience to enjoy a Wintersun album! It will all make sense to you very soon!
"And this album is not the only thing we've done, not by a long shot! In fact your minds will be blown soon! That is a guarantee. So click the notifications ON in our Wintersun Facebook Page, if you don't want to miss out on the new Wintersun album! (Because of Facebook algorithm reach limit). THANKS GUYS!" More...
Echoing the "it is 100% done" comments from back in July, Wintersun has again taken to trolling fans. Yesterday the group posted the image below online, only to be followed up today with this comment from Jari Mäenpää:
"Damn, I love the sense of humor of the Wintersun fans! :D And btw, over 16.000 personal likes broken. Very nice! Thank you! Keep'em coming! Can I get over 20.000 before March? "
Needless to say, some weren't exactly impressed by this latest round of non-updates from the band, while others were more good natured about it. By far the best comment on Wintersun's Facebook page has been this prescient musing on two things that are never actually going to be released:
I have a bet going with my sister that if "Time 2" comes out before George RR Martin's "The Winds of Winter" that she has to buy it for me. And if the book comes first I get it for her. This bet has been going for about 2 years now. Maybe I'll win.More...
Following that whole debacle with "Time II" not getting released due to, ahem, let's call them "studio issues," Wintersun is trolling now trolling fans by announcing that something or other is done... but not precisely what "it" actually is.
Seriously guys, don't expect an album, they're being way too coy for that. Jari Mäenpää issued this statement via Facebook, which was subsequently shared on the Wintersun page:
"When I announced last week that 'it is done,' I did not mean that IT is done. I meant that IT is done! :D
"But seriously, after almost two years of insane amount of work (not to mention a lifetime of practicing and developing music composing, lyric writing, playing, singing, production and engineering skills etc.), something big and amazing that will blow your mind has finally been completely finished, 100%! We thought (and I'm sure you did too) that this day would never come, but it's finally here. I feel I did the impossible! Feeling very proud and happy!
"The question now though is, will it ever be released? Well it will be sooner or later, but that is yet to be determined. I have sent a long email to Nuclear Blast and we are now in negotiations with them. That's all I can tell you right now. Keep your fingers crossed!"
Can 21st-century metalheads ever be truly happy if they’re not bitching about something on the web?
The pointless arguments over bands’ music, which mostly boil down to matters of taste, are exhausting enough. And there’s a simple solution to dissatisfaction with a particular tour package: stay home and masturbate.
But complaining about festival lineups? Really?
I have some news for you, sport: the only Perfect Metal Festival Lineup, which exists only in an individual’s imagination, attracts an audience of one. Your Perfect Lineup is different from mine.
There needs to be a common denominator, a compromise. I don’t know about you, but when I’m not basking in my serene, elite metal knowledge via trve and righteous, smarmy and self-congratulatory screeds on Facebook, I actually enjoy watching a live show in the company of others. And in reaching the compromise to make that social event possible, everyone’s Perfect Lineup inevitably becomes less than perfect. Such is the transition from fantasy to reality.
In the process, like small children finally realizing that vegetables aren’t going to kill them, we learn that the reality is almost always better than the fantasy (discounting the fact that the latter doesn’t exist). MTV’s Butt-Head once mused on this very issue: “If nothing sucked, and everything was, like, cool all the time… how would you KNOW it was cool?”
At a several-day festival with dozens of bands on multiple stages, we NEED at least a handful of acts we know we can ignore. Otherwise, think of the immense pressure to be constantly on our feet, rushing back and forth, watching every equally important band with rapt attention. Even if possible, it would be simply overwhelming. We’d pass out from exhaustion and forget to enjoy ourselves. Plus, the truly special acts wouldn’t seem as special.
Last summer at Tuska Open Air in Helsinki, rather than bitch about the injustice of Bring Me The Horizon directly preceding Anthrax, I was grateful for the chance to relax and have a beer before catching a show by one of the Big Four. More...
Wntersun has issued the following statement about Kai Hahto missing upcoming tour dates:
"Due to the Nightwish duties Kai is not able to perform the upcoming Wintersun live shows with us. Therefore we are proud to announce that Timo Häkkinen (Sotajumala) will be filling in for the time being. A great drummer and also Kai’s friend, we are going to blast our live shows like before! Cheers!"
Kai had this to say: "As most of the shows during 2015 will collide with Nightwish there was no other option than to get Timo to do the shows I can't. I will be back in 2016 for sure. Cheers!!"
Timo also adds: "I am very honored to fill in for Kai and to help the band out. Kai is a dear friend as well as my all-time favorite drummer. I look forward to the experience and embrace the challenge - see you on the road!" More...
Finland's Wintersun has been confirmed as one of the main headliners of the upcoming Paganfest tour 2015. Wintersun will team up with Finnish comrades Turisas and Dutch folksters Heidefolk. Support acts will be Obscurity and Frosttide.
Furthermore, some of the dates will be Paganfest extended shows led by folk metal superstars Korpiklaani. They are joined by Hannover’s finest Grailknights and Germany's Finsterforst to complete the Paganfest 2015 billing.
Currently announced dates are as follows:
19.03. DE Ludwigsburg - Rockfabrik
20.03. DE Leipzig - Hellraiser *Extended Show
21.03. DE Oberhausen - Turbinenhalle *Extended Show
22.03. NL Tilburg - 013 *Extended Show
23.03. DE Hamburg - Markthalle
24.03. CH Pratteln - Z7
25.03. DE Saarbrücken - Garage
26.03. DE Frankfurt - Batschkapp
27.03. DE München - Backstage *Extended Show
28.03. AT Wien - Arena *Extended Show
29.03. DE Berlin - Postbahnhof *Extended Show
The Wintersun studio saga continues...
After posting a lengthy message online back in July about how no lesser studio could possibly do justice to the follow-up to the "Time" album (reviewed here) and trying to leverage the online rage of fans to force Nuclear Blast into building the band its own studio (followed by an even lengthier message defending the first one that had people pulling out the popcorn), Wintersun will now be launching a crowd funding campaign so the fans can foot the bill for said studio.
The following message gauging interest in such a campaign was posted on the Wintersun Facebook page:
"Wintersun Studio & Time II crowd funding survey (Please read first before liking!): Good news guys! We have reached an agreement with Nuclear Blast. We gotta give them big props for coming through for us! But first, we need to do a little survey to estimate if we could actually reach our crowd funding goal (which is pretty damn high) before we rush into it.
"We need to estimate carefully our goal, what is possible and what is not before we can move forward with our plans. This is sort of a test run, but this will hopefully determine approximately how much support we would have. We also want to be clear that the crowd funding is not a charity, we are not asking for donations or anything for free. You would totally get your monies worth!
"So we would like to know... If we did this crowd funding project, how many of you guys would be willing to pre-order a TIME II High Quality download package? Stem mixes and many other killer goodies would be included in the perk. All details will be revealed later, but this package would be huge, something never done before! Here´s a little taster what the package would include:
- High quality full album download (wav 24bit, 44.1kHz), exactly the way the album was recorded, mixed and mastered
- Includes all tracks (Fields of Snow, The Way of the Fire, One with the Shadows, Ominous Clouds, Storm, Silver Leaves)
- Beautiful PDF extended digital booklet with all crowd funding backer names included (optional)
TIME II Stems
- Separated mix tracks for all Drums, Bass, Rhythm Guitars, Melody Guitars & Solos, Vocals, Orchestrations of all songs
- Make your own mix, adjust the levels for your own liking, listen all the main instruments separately, discover and learn all the secrets inside the mix layers
"But that´s just for starters, this package would include many other items and surprises. We feel very confident about this and trust that you all would go crazy about it! And this package is just the first perk on the list. But this would be our main focus for the campaign.
"The price would be very affordable and with the guarantee that 100% of the raised money would go for the funding of our studio and Wintersun´s album productions. This would be your chance of a lifetime to support us directly and get an insane TIME II package for your money at the same time (pun intended!). So win-win! All we want you to do for now is...
"Please LIKE this post if you would buy and support us.
"Please DO NOT click the LIKE if you would not buy.
"AND PLEASE SHARE THIS POST TO EVERYONE!!! Because it's important that all our potential supporters see this post and we get some idea whether there's a chance to reach our goal. Thanks!"
So, what do you guys think - is this legitimate use of crowd funding in a win/win for fan and musician, or should the group suck it up and do what ever other metal band on the planet with a major label record contract manages to do and release albums on a regular schedule? More...
Last week, we were forced to cancel the Metalunderground.com Official Podcast due to scheduling conflicts and a relative dearth of fascinating, frightening, or fabulous news. This week, we are back with a vengeance.
In an extended episode, co-hosts Kevin Perez (n0thinghead) and Mike Smith (OverkillExposure) hold a series of intense discussions regarding three different, but equally captivating, current metal topics.
Up first: the seemingly endless recording/production/mixing woes of epic Finnish act Wintersun, which released “Time I” in 2012 after an eight year wait since the now-classic self-titled debut. Fans are poised with bated breath in anticipation of the upcoming sequel, but master songwriter (and admitted perfectionist) Jari Mäenpää just keeps running into delay after delay.
In a fit of frustration, Mäenpää recently took to social media to explain his technological and financial catch-22 vis-à-vis Nuclear Blast Records. Mike and Kevin share some mixed opinions of all this. What do you think?
Next, it’s onto more of the outrageously popular Slipknot, whose only necessary introduction is this: some love to love them, others love to hate them, but no one can fully categorize them (please don’t argue that last point - you’re wrong).
It’s been six years since the best-selling but not-entirely-fan-pleasing “All Hope Is Gone,” and after several dramatic episodes and periods of doubt over the band’s survival, Slipknot has finally unveiled new music from the upcoming fifth studio album: video single “The Negative One.”
We, like most people, think this new stuff carries strong echoes of “Iowa” (2001) and even “Slipknot” (1999). We don’t entirely agree on just how good that is, however. Listen in to find out who you think is right!
Finally, we launch into a detailed reaction to “The Flesh Prevails,” the new full-length from atmospheric, progressive, insert-your-sub-sub-genre death metallers Fallujah. The album is packed with idiosyncrasies both excellent and dubious. Listen in here to check out the full range of opinions, and don’t forget to subscribe via iTunes or RSS. Enjoy!
Wintersun mainman/composer Jari Mäenpää posted a lengthy clarifying statement on his previous remarks with regard to the delay in releasing "Time I," as well as his issues on crowdfunding and label Nuclear Blast Records.
Sit back, pull up a chair, grab a snack and a beverage and dig in. The statement goes in detail about the sound mix and issues surrounding "Time I" (see review here) and his battle with perfection. It reads:
"I feel like I need to explain the situation more clearly as some people seem to be a bit confused. So let's get more into the details…
"Let's get one thing clear first, I don´t live in a fantasy world. You might say I´m a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to album production. Fine, I´ll give you that. But I do make compromises, lots of them. TIME I was all a huge compromise. The melody guitars are all old modelling amps (not the new Axe-FXs and whatnots which sound pretty decent actually). There simply was not enough budget to record them properly in a professional studio, so they sound pretty horrible and are very hard mix and fit in with the rest of the instruments. The vocals were all recorded in various rehearsal places just with my laptop (the reason why it took so long to record them and also because of the hundreds of vocal tracks I needed to record for these albums). They are certainly not the best quality vocal recordings. Again, another compromise for not having enough budget for a 3rd party professional studio. I also wanted some time to practise my vocals while recording, which I´ve never really done before, but you can hear the improvement. Also I do some of the vocal arrangement work and experiment with different things while recording, this would be impossible in a 3rd party studio. The rhythm guitars were actually recorded in a 3rd party studio, but I didn´t have enough time to craft the sound exactly like I want it. Rhythm guitar is the thing I´m the most perfectionist and passionate about. There´s only a handful of rhythm guitar sounds I like from the millions of heavy metal records out there, so you can imagine how hard it is for me to be able to produce the guitar sound of my dreams in few days in a 3rd party studio. Impossible. And to fit it in with hundreds of orchestration & synth instruments, to not muddy the bass, to be able to scoop the mids so the whole mix doesn't sound like a kitchen radio (I don´t like mids in metal guitars plus the orchestra instruments already eat a lot of the mids space), but still keep the upper mids smooth and not harsh, to not mask the drum overheads, but still having enough modern highs and upper mids attack to have it cut through the mix. This is almost a mission impossible, but I know I could do it in my own time in my own studio... So the time ran out from the studio´s “taximeter” and I was left with unsatisfying guitar sound and very hard to fit in the mix (still had to pay the studio bill though). I was very unhappy about this, but still released the album! The orchestrations were made with just one computer which forced me to use time consuming workarounds and was very stressful. I won´t even get into the technical problems I´ve had to deal with over the years. It took 3 years of sweat and tears to make the orchestrations the way I had to do them. This was the hardest task and it nearly burned me out. Never again this way! I would need a computer farm to do the all the orchestrations in realtime without slow workarounds. More...
After the long wait for "Time I" (reviewed here) to finally be released, fans have been left hanging again waiting for the follow-up "Time II." Now Wintersun's Jari Mäenpää has issued the following statement online about the reasons behind the delay:
"Reality update about crowd funding, TIME II and future albums. I´m very happy to see that we have so much dedicated fans that would be willing to pledge and be a part of funding a studio for Wintersun, so I could make the next Wintersun album without it taking another 10 years again.
"I´ve been thinking about this Kickstarter/Pledge crowd funding thing for a while and I´m very confident now that there is enough of you guys that would help us raise the money for the Wintersun studio! This would give me the freedom to make music efficiently and nonstop. It would eliminate lot of the problems I´ve struggled with all my life and still continue to struggle everyday. For example right now I need a studio to reamp guitars for TIME II. And not just any studio, my own studio where I can craft my sounds exactly like I want them. 3rd party studios have never worked for me and I´ve never gotten satisfactory results for the insane prices they charge.
"I live in a small shitty apartment building and I have neighbors. It is very very hard to work like this. I can´t record vocals, I can´t practice my singing, I can´t record guitars, I can´t record guitars even with modelling amps, because the electricity is so bad in this shitty building so I get lots of interference, I even play and practice the electric guitar acoustically without an amp 99% of the time in my home, I can´t record drums or basically any acoustic instruments, I don´t have the room or cool space for a big computer farm which is a must for the orchestrations for the next album (the place is too small and hot even for the one computer I have), I can´t mix properly, ´cause the room is so bad and there´s always ambient noise in and outside the building. That´s why I usually turn my sleeping rhythm around and mix at nights, but that causes problems in my everyday life. I can´t do pretty much anything properly in this situation. Building a professional studio for Wintersun would erase all this and give us the freedom to make music nonstop. It would upgrade our album sound significantly and most importantly speed up the album making process significantly. This would even raise our live game. With proper preproduction, able to tweak our live sounds and setup properly we would sound pretty incredible live. We would also be able to rehearse more and that would allow us to be able to play live more often and come to places where we normally have not been able to come. The studio would allow us to have more time for everything. More...
Dom Joly surprised a crowd of metal heads at a Wintersun show with his "Fool Britannia" sketch series when he appeared for an unexpected intermission. See the looks of bewilderment on the show-goers faces in the clip below, which was shot in London at The Garage on July 16th, 2013.
The last place I ever thought I would see a show was in the middle of the campus of the “elite of society” – Harvard University. Though not confirmed, I had heard that this particular show was the first metal event at the newly opened Sinclair club, which was directly in the heart of the college. I had made the 114 mile trek to the area countless times, however, I don’t recall the traffic being this annoying. When I went to see Wintersun and Eluveitie at Royale in downtown Boston, the trip was nuisance free. But, it was Friday night, and stupidity on the road was nothing new. The area was wrought with college kids, yuppie preps and artsy types, so it was a pleasure to walk around in my Sodom – “Epitome of Torture” shirt, its double meaning was painfully clear. The venue proved to be a rather loose, without any pushy asshole bouncers and the club itself had decent sound. If you have been to the upstairs part of The Palladium in Worcester, imagine it double the size with a much better stage (raised to where you can see), much better lighting and double the upstairs space where you can view the band from just above the floor crowd from all sides/angles. More...
Chicago based Starkill (formerly Massakren) will be hitting the road next month in support of new album "Fires of Life," released earlier this year on Century Media Records (check out our review here).
Founding member Parker Jameson had this to say about the upcoming tour: "We're incredibly honored and excited to be touring North America with Wintersun, Fleshgod Apocalypse, and Arsis. As fans of--and having been inspired by--all of these bands, we're glad to be part of the lineup and can't wait to share the stage with these guys."
Check out Starkill on tour: More...
Tuska Open Air Metal Festival promised to be an event to remember this year, with huge acts such as King Diamond, Wintersun and Nightwish taking command of the main stage! With finally perfect summer weather and a lineup that challenged many other summer festivals, Friday came with much awaited anticipation!
Many of the bands this year were scheduled at the same time, perhaps the cause of this was that in the past there have always been four stages, but this year there were only three. Only two of these stages allowed media to shoot footage and photos, which led to a massive and unfortunate stress factor to an otherwise phenomenal festival experience. In addition, overcrowded photo pits with unqualified photographers led to an unfortunate decline in coverage from other medias this year. Die hard Tuska fans and Medias still showed up in hordes, and showed why Tuska is still the metal festival to be at in Helsinki! More...