KOTIPELTO (Ex- Stratovarius) IN WACKEN!
Who doesn't know the voice of Finland's renowned singer Timo Kotipelto? From seemingly out of nowhere, the powerful-voiced frontman turned up to support Stratovarius-Mastermind and guitar-player (and then-singer) Timo Tolkki by singing and giving the band a very special flair beginning with their 1996 album "The Fourth Dimension". KOTIPELTO studied singing at the famous Academy of Music in Helsinki for five years. His career with Stratovarius quickly soared to the top, being awarded with three Gold albums already. Satisfied, but with an unquenchable creative urge, he took advantage of some down-time between recording/touring and started his own project in spring 2001, and thus KOTIPELTO was born. Always being interested in Egyptian mythology and history, the frontman created a story about an Egyptian man in ancient times who experiences his rebirth by a vast constellation of stars and uses each song to tell of his experiences from the different periods in his life. KOTIPELTO weaves fact and fiction of ancient Egypt with all the secrets, mysterious legends and much more magical influences to insightful lyrics, additional bombastic sounds, moments of introspect, and more Dark- and Doom-Metal songs to get a first class result: Waiting For The Dawn. Listening to Waiting For The Dawn brings to mind a mixture of Stratovarius, vintage Black Sabbath and mid-'80s Iron Maiden. The music is perfectly crafted, far away from the boring safety of mainstream rock / metal and supports the lyrics in a very well thought-out way. To bring this excellent Melodic-Rock project to life, some famous musicians knocked at KOTIPELTO's door: Jari Kainulainen (Stratovarius) is playing bass, Michael Romeo (Symphony X) on guitar, Roland Grapow (ex-Helloween) on guitar, Janne Wirman (Children Of Bodom, Warmen) keyboards, Mikko Harkin (Sonata Arctica) keyboards, Sami Virtanen (Warmen) on guitar, Mirka Rantanen (Tunnel Vision) at the drums and last but not least the contributions of HIM drummer Gas! All these collaborators gave their best on Waiting For The Dawn to make this special album a delicacy for Stratovarius- and rock / metal fans as well. There are powerful songs with a smooth touch like the opener "Travel Through Time" or the more upbeat song "Lord Of Eternity" , the darker and doomy tracks "Knowledge And Wisdom" and "Arise", the modern-styled power metal within "Testimony" and "Chosen By Re" and the affectionate ballad "Beauty Has Come", all helping to establish KOTIPELTO as not only an outstanding frontman, but an accomplished composer / arranger in his own right. Add in cover artwork from the one and only Derek Riggs (Iron Maiden/Gamma Ray), and all in all the first KOTIPELTO solo project Waiting For The Dawn is a must for every serious Heavy Metal CD collection!
Andreas Schöwe (HAMMER)