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Helsinki, Finland (2004 – present)

Founded by ex-Ensiferum frontman Jari Mäenpää in Helsinki, Finland in 2004. Wintersun is a Finnish Metal band with an array of influences ranging from (but not limited to): Power Metal, Folk Metal, Melodic Death Metal and even Progressive Metal. Ultimately melodic death/power metal.

Jari has spoken about the genre of Wintersun’s music, and says “Well it´s difficult to put into a certain genre, cause there’s lots of variation. But to describe it, I would say something like: Extreme Majestic Technical Epic Melodic Metal.” He has also stated “But it’s really not death metal. It’s very difficult even for me to label it, but if somebody would put a gun on my forehead, I would probably say something like Extreme Melodic Majestic Metal.”

The first Wintersun album, “Wintersun” was scheduled for recording early in 2004 a time frame which clashed with the Ensiferum European tour. Jari Mäenpää was forced to choose between his booked recording time for Wintersun, or the Ensiferum tour; he chose Wintersun and was forced to leave Ensiferum behind.

The album was released on September 13, 2004 through Nuclear Blast Records.

Wintersun’s self titled album was produced solely by Jari Mäenpää himself, with only a session drummer (Kai Hahto) to perform the drums and percussion. Jari performed the vocals, bass, guitars and programmed the synth on his own. Indeed, the album was conceptualised purely as a solo project in tandem to Ensiferum (evident by the fact that the Wintersun album bears Mäenpää’s name on the front).


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  • Dark_Althor

    Saw them yesterday."Forest" was clearly a highlights. That final... with Jari's vocals and Jukka's growls, amazing. Everyone was stunned. It was a great show, flawless, it's nice to see them still alive, in such great shape !

    26 Mar 9:21am Reply
  • umosay

    Another vid best quality so far

    26 Mar 1:08am Reply
  • Meat_Wolf

    "but Jari loves his 4mins of the same riff" - Jari loves his 10 mins of the same riff :D The Way of the Fire is basically built up on 1 riff, same for Time and Land of Snow and Sorrow. The case is, it works surprisingly great because he constantly changes little details as the songs unfold. I think there would be far more orchestral details in the final version which would make it much richer. And the song doesn't feel unecessary long at all to me, even in this shitty livecam version there are a lot of nice tunes in every section of the composition.

    25 Mar 10:13am Reply
  • umosay

    The middle part needs some serious cutting, but Jari loves his 4mins of the same riff. I would expect far more variations of that lead part into a solo but it never comes. For an 11min song the structure is pretty simple. Not sure there is enough highlights to warrant 11mins. Can't really judge off the quality but that's my first thoughts.

    25 Mar 8:16am Reply
  • Ilgu

    "Currently it seems like they need to play live again and again in order to pay their label debts." <--- I'd just like to add that according to Jari, all his debts to NB have been paid and at this point he doesn't owe them anything :)

    24 Mar 6:06pm Reply
  • Meat_Wolf

    "What now?" — crowdfunding for own studio with yet uknown Time II related stuff offered as rewards. "Holopainen actually delivered a product" — my comparison was not quite correct because Holopainen had a much bigger 'initial capital' of recognition and fame because he was in the right time in the right place. And that's why he eventually got subsidised. Nevertheless, the movie was pretty much a pointless thing designed for, I guess, only Tuomas himself (because he can). And the new album sounds exactly like a 'product'. "And why should he be afraid to name the actual sum he needs?" — I think the numbers are really high although probably he underestimates how crazy at least a part of the audience is.

    24 Mar 5:13pm Reply
  • Nordpolar

    And why should he be afraid to name the actual sum he needs? If there are only 10 sycophantic fanboys like one can find 'em in this shoutbox and mostly on the Wintersun Facebookpage, he already has the whole sum for "Time II". And for the next 20 records too, I guess.

    24 Mar 4:04pm Reply
  • Nordpolar

    So, what happened? The last thing I read is that he dropped his dispute with Nuclear Blast. What now? Crowdfunding? Own studio? Currently it seems like they need to play live again and again in order to pay their label debts. "Forest" is a quite okay song at the very least. Guess my ears aren't as precise as yours to judge over such low quality videos properly. Fun fact: Holopainen actually delivered a product instead of just talking about it. That's why he's gettin' subsidisation I guess.

    24 Mar 3:58pm Reply
  • Qyaffer

    Lol @FeskarN_89 all the banks need to do is one Google search of Jari to decide not to give him a loan. On the topic of it being a huge amount of money, I think if he buys an already existing home and just renovates it, it will not cost as much. Maybe he might consider also renting out the studio while Wintersun is on tour. But I'm sure these things have all crossed his mind and are perhaps already part of his plan. I just hope it could happen quicker, but whatever the pace I'm grateful for his music.

    24 Mar 12:07pm Reply
  • FeskarN_89

    I agree with you guys. They money he need will be a huge number indeed but this needs to be relased, Jari's music is unique and out of this world. This studio needs to happen soon, so we can experience the mighty material he got in stores. Why can't Jari and the other guys in the band, take a loan instead? Sure it will take time to get that money back but it will be worth it.

    24 Mar 11:47am Reply
  • Big_TV

    Sounds absolutely stuning. I have this feeling that even if Jari got his own studio, we would still face a lot of delays for some reason or another. Like, the studio just isn't providing his guitar tracks with the majestic glisten they need, So he will need to fund a trip where he will be walked to the highest mountain in Tibet by about 20.5 monks (Precisely) where the spirits are rife.

    24 Mar 11:21am Reply
  • Ilgu

    ""Why havn't they started the crowdfunding project yet?!" - I think Jari is kinda afraid to name the actual sum he needs." <-- yes, I think you got this right. It's gonna be a huge amount of money, that's for sure. But damn, it NEEDS to happen. If people never hear these masterpieces Jari has inside his head... well, it's just wrong.

    24 Mar 10:31am Reply
  • Meat_Wolf

    Also, the vocals in the chorus are simply otherwordly. And this is live, so what is he capable of on the studio version?.. I wanna ask the Finnish Government why they subsidise shitty Holopainen's filmmaking instead of investing in a studio for Jari and letting the world hear this GODLIKE MUSIC? ;..;

    24 Mar 9:27am Reply
  • Meat_Wolf

    "Why havn't they started the crowdfunding project yet?!" - I think Jari is kinda afraid to name the actual sum he needs. Although is he posts this song as a teaser and says "this is the stuff I got but only you can help me record it in a proper manner" there would surely be a lot of crazy folks to participate. "mainly last Nightwish and Ensiferum albums, sound terribly flat compared to this song" - I have to say that unfortunately it's very difficult to listen to any kind of music after hearing this and realizing how far away we are from this song released as a studio version. Sigh.

    24 Mar 8:12am Reply
  • Wintersun89

    oh my god, that new song is wonderful!

    23 Mar 8:51pm Reply
  • Dark_Althor

    This is insane, all recent stuff I listened to, mainly last Nightwish and Ensiferum albums, sound terribly flat compared to this song. Jary is definitively a god. Thanks Ilgu for the link !

    23 Mar 6:32pm Reply
  • Ilgu Another video, with a passable quality this time. You can hear some of the guitar lines a lot better in this one. MAN dat ending!! The master has returned

    23 Mar 3:30pm Reply
  • Dark_Althor

    Vocal lines of this new song are trully amazing... shivers

    23 Mar 12:56pm Reply
  • FeskarN_89

    Why havn't they started the crowdfunding project yet?! I want to support Jari and his amazing music. The album after Time II will be something else, judging by the "Forest" song.

    23 Mar 11:59am Reply
  • Meat_Wolf

    "It would be really interesting if Jari decided to release a low-fi album" - that would never happen or why would he need a studio for that? :D The new song brings tears to my eyes, that oriental folk middle part is pure magic as well as the riff that follows. And the vocals are simply outstanding. I really hope we will hear Time II and all the other ideas Jari has in his mind someday because there is no better thing I heard in music, ever.

    23 Mar 11:09am Reply
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