Stratovarius – Enigma – Intermission 2


Reviewed by:
On 4 September 2018
Last modified:8 September 2018


A mix of rarities, orchestral versions and some new material

Stratovarius have a new album. Or is it an old one? Well it’s something in between. There are some new songs (three of them), there are some orchestral versions of existing songs (four of them) and there are a load of rare tracks such as songs that were previously only available as bonus tracks on Japanese releases. So it’s quite a mixed album in that respect. The big question though is how it works as an album.

The orchestral versions sound good, but I get the feeling that “orchestral version” means it was recorded with some samples rather than recorded with a proper orchestra – it just lacks that rich sound an orchestra would bring. Instead we just seem to have some samples of string instruments used.

Check out “Oblivion”, one of the new songs..

I’m not quite sure about the new songs such as “Oblivion”. On the one hand they’re great songs, but they feel a little odd – not really like the Stratovarius songs we know and love. It might take more listening to really accept them.

The new songs are very good, and it’s great to hear the rare tracks too, but there’s one huge problem with this album – it sounds like exactly what it is – a hastily thrown together collection of stuff so they can have something to release and promote during the upcoming tour with Tarja. Since the next studio album is still a work in progress and wouldn’t be ready in time for this tour then they’ve resorted to this – a collection of left-overs they had lying around.

That’s not to say this isn’t an album that fans will want to have – in fact a lot of fans will buy this, partly for the new songs, partly for the rarities and partly to hear the orchestral versions. It’s a great addition to fans CD collections, but what they’re really waiting for is the next proper studio album.

“Enigma – Intermission 2” will be released on 28th September 2018

Track listing:

1. Enigma
2. Hunter
3. Hollowed
4. Burn me down
5. Last shore
6. Kill it with fire
7. Oblivion
8. Second sight
9. Fireborn
10. Giants
11. Castaway
12. Old man and the sea
Orchestral versions
13. Fantasy
14. Shine in the dark
15. Unbreakable
16. Winter skies

A mix of rarities, orchestral versions and some new material

About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.