In my youth, I followed a lot of artists. With my biggest favourites, I was a bit of a collector – I needed to get every album and single they ever released. But the older I got, the more I moved from listening to artists to listening to songs. This Top 10 list is a perfect example, many of the songs are the only song from that particular artist that I even like at all. These days, there are only three artists that I care about enough to eagerly await their next album. There’s Kaija Koo, Halestorm, and Within Temptation. I couldn’t put any Halestorm songs in this list because they are all released after my cut-off date. Kaija Koo has plenty of songs that would qualify, but I wasn’t able to lift one song above the other. Tinakenkätyttö is like #11.
The first time I heard of Within Temptation, I dismissed them as an Evanescence ripoff (with My Immortal in fresh memory) and never even bothered to listen through a song. But as my music taste started gradually shifting from pop to rock (probably much thanks to acts like Evanescence), I wanted to explore this relatively new genre of symphonic rock/metal. After all, I do have a very soft spot for orchestral productions, just look at what I wrote about No Light, No Light or Ne Lui Dis Pas. And so I decided to give Within Temptation another chance, and it’s the best musical decision I’ve ever made. I was all in; hook, line and sinker. In my “All Time Top 40”, the act with most songs is Within Temptation. I was very close to putting two of their songs in my Top 10 (the second one being Utopia). A third one will be in my Top 10 in the future, but at the moment it’s too new to be included (Whole World is Watching). Or why not Faster. Or Paradise.
But, the song that makes it to the Top 10 and all the way up to #4, is Memories. A haunting, ethereal ballad with strings so gentle I melt before them, and Sharon den Adel’s vocals have never sounded better. This is as beautiful as it ever gets and I almost cry every time she sings “darling you know I love you ’till the end of time“, even when the words themselves have no meaning to me.
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