The exclusive re-edition of “Hymn To Life” by Timo Tolkki (Stratovarius)

Most people associate Timo Tolkki only with Startovarius – the legendary power metal group, known from such breathtaking releases as “Fourth Dimension”, “Visions” and “Destiny”. Not all know that Tolkki released three fascinating solo albums, with each venturing into totally different musical realms. Timo’s second work – “Hymn To Life” – shows the emotional and delicate side of one of the most talented power metal shredders ever.

“Hymn To Life” can be in fact called Tolkki’s first solo effort, as the previous album called “Classical Variations and Themes” (Abs, 1994) was an instrumental LP heavily inspired by classical music. In 2001 Timo decided to write a different sort of material, with regular songs. With the help of fellow musicians Anssi Nykänen (drums) and Mika Ervaskari (original Stratovarius keyboardist) and a few guests, Tolkki released “Hymn To Life” on January 28th, 2002 on Nuclear Blast Records. The album includes eleven melodic rock/metal tracks, preceded by an intro. It kicks off with the amazing opener “Key To The Universe”, with guest vocals by a true metal icon – Michael Kiske from Helloween. The song is definitely one of the highlights of the entire LP – it’s groovy, melodic and has a unique positive vibe about it. “Now I Understand” follows, sounding like a more guitar-based version of Police’s “I’ll Be Watching You”. The next track is “Divine”, an original and atmospheric tune with amazing keyboards and a heavy ending. “Little Boy I Miss You” and “I Believe” are both beautiful and very delicate rock ballads with very emotional and personal lyrics. They are followed by “Are You The One?”, featuring the vocal talent of Sharon den Adel from Within Temptation. Next is “Father”, which along with “Dear God” resembles the track “030366” from the Statovarius album “Fourth Dimension”. “Fresh Blue Waters”, on the other hand, is Tolkki’s attempt to join country stylistics with a Pink Floyd vibe. It’s followed by a charming tune called “It’s X-mas Morning”. The album ends with the epic title track, lasting over eleven minutes and featuring a quote from the movie “The Great Dictator”, as well as some beautiful piano parts repeated throughout the song. After “Hymn To Life”, Timo Tolkki released one more solo album entitled “Saana – Warrior of Light, part 1” – in 2008.

This exclusive re-edition of “Hymn To Life” brings a truly memorable musical experience, inspired by such rock legends as Pink Floyd and OSI. With this release Timo Tolkki proves his skills as one of the best rock/power metal guitarists of all times. New digipak edition is limited to 2000 copies. Digitally remastered using 24-Bit process on golden disc. Metal Mind Productions will release it on 25th August 2008 in Europe and 28th October 2008 in USA (via MVD).

Timo Tolkki
“Hymn To Life” (remastered)

Label: Metal Mind Records
Cat. No.: MASS CD 1220 DG
Barcode: 5907785033337
Format: CD Digipak (limited edition of 2000 numerated copies)
Genre: rock/metal
Release date: 25.08.2008 Europe / 28.10.2008 USA


1. Primal
2. Key To The Universe
3. Now I Understand
4. Divine
5. Little Boy I Miss You
6. I Believe
7. Are You The One?
8. Father
9. Fresh Blue Waters
10. Dear God
11. It’s X-mas Morning
12. Hymn To Life

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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