Symphonic metal veterans NIGHTWISH have released a new video in which keyboardist and main songwriter Tuomas Holopainen discusses the making of the band’s upcoming album, “Yesterwynde”due on September 20, 2024 via Nuclear Blast. It marks the band’s tenth studio LP, following on from the release of “Human. :II: Nature.” in 2020. Tuomas talks about a core meaning of the LP’s first single “Perfume Of The Timeless”and his motivation behind making music.

Holopainen told Kerrang! magazine about “Perfume Of The Timeless”: “When we had the first meeting with Nuclear Blasttalking about the new album and singles, I told them the first single will be a song called ‘Perfume Of The Timeless’ and it’s eight and a half minutes long and the chorus comes in at 3:30. And they were, like, ‘Perfect!’ I think that you have to do with the fact that we have a long legacy. You know, we can do whatever we want, and I do, but it says something that we can do that, when I heard that for Spotify it’s good to have the vocals start after 15 seconds, or people skip it; they don’t have the attention span anymore.”

Asked if he had to adjust his writing style because “Yesterwynde” marks NIGHTWISH‘s first album since 2002’s “Century Child” without bassist/vocalist Marko Hietala, Tuomas said: “No, it doesn’t really change anything, except that now we had two voices instead of three, only Floor [Jansen, lead singer] and troy [Donockley, multi-instrumentalist]. But that’s it — it really didn’t change much at all. And Jukka [Koskinen], the new bass player, is such a grounding personality that it’s so easy to work with him. And his bass playing skills are tremendous, quite different from how Marko played the bass, which also brought a new spice into the music. So nothing but positive things to say about it all.

“There are many bands in the world that don’t have a single original member anymore,” he continued. “And I think it comes down to the fact that if the music is good, then that’s all that matters, in the end. Maybe for some people, certain bands are so holy that they can stand if they don’t have certain members in it, even though the music would be good, but I don’t really think like that. I just listen to the music, not the personnel behind it.

Holopainen also addressed the fact that NIGHTWISH you have no plans yet to tour in support of “Yesterwynde”. The band previously explained that the reasons for the touring break were “personal” but unrelated to Jansen‘s then-pregnancy. (Jansen gave birth to her second child in October 2023.) Asked if it feels weird to be talking about an album that, for the first time, he won’t be supporting on the road, Tuomas said: “No, it doesn’t feel weird. It just feels right. But people shouldn’t get worried. It’s not the end of the band. We just signed a multi-record deal with Nuclear Blast, so there will be more music coming, definitely. But as far as shows, we’re just gonna have a long breath now and see what happens. That’s all I can say at the moment. We got our fair share in 2022 and 2023 when we did a lot of shows. So that helped.”

“Yesterwynde” track listing:

01. Yesterwynde
02. An Ocean Of Strange Islands
03. The Antikythera Mechanism
04. The Day Of…
05. Perfume Of The Timeless
06. Sway
07. The Children Of ‘Ata
08. Something Whispered Follow Me
09. Spider Silk
10. Hiraeth
eleven. The Weave
12. lanternlight

In a press release, Holopainen stated about “Perfume Of The Timeless”: “You are the result of an unbroken chain of millions of ancestors and their loves. ‘Perfume Of The Timeless’ reminds us all of this amazing fact. And if you’re not amazed, listen to it again, because it’s important.”

In January, NIGHTWISH drummer Kai Hahto spoke about the band’s upcoming follow-up to 2020’s “Human. :II: Nature.” album in an interview with Laureline Tilkin of Tuonela Magazine. He said: “At least it’s not gonna be the same as ‘Human. :II: Nature.’, so… Probably, let’s say that we go back to more heavy, heavier things on the new album, but also there’s a lot of, again, new winds to blow, so to speak. So, different new elements. But, of course, it’s still NIGHTWISH, but, of course, we brought back the big symphony orchestra again to the new upcoming tenth album. Yeah, it’s gonna be exciting. And quite challenging music to play as well.”

Earlier in January, Hahto told Chaoszine that “it looks[ed] like” NIGHTWISH wouldn’t play any shows in the next two or three years.

In December 2022, Holopainen said NIGHTWISH‘s upcoming follow-up to “Human. :II: Nature.” would be the third part of a trilogy that began with 2015’s “Endless Forms Most Beautiful” album. I have told metal hammer: “I immediately knew after getting that album [‘Endless Forms Most Beautiful’] done that, ‘Okay, we have to do more songs about this, because there’s so much more to explore and tell the world. We’re not done with this.’ And the same thing happened after ‘Human. :II: Nature.’; we’re still not done. So let’s do one more. At least one more.

“In a way, [the next album] is the third part of a trilogy, which started with ‘Endless Forms…’ and then ‘Human. :II: Nature.’ There are some major surprises there again, but it feels like a natural continuation to ‘Human. :II: Nature.’

In September 2022, Tuomas was asked if NIGHTWISH‘s upcoming LP will once again be an exploration of evolutionary science, as was the case with the previous two releases. Tuomas said: “Yes and no. It sails on the same waters, but there’s some new surprises there as well.”

In August 2022, Tuomas told Rock Sverige that he spent “about a year” working on the music and lyrics for the next NIGHTWISH album.

Asked if he got any kind of inspiration from the pandemic, Tuomas said: “Yeah, lyrically there’s a couple of things that reflect the pandemic, but not in the way you would expect.”

“Human. :II: Nature.” was released in April 2020. The follow-up to 2015’s “Endless Forms Most Beautiful” was a double album containing nine tracks on the main CD and one long track, divided into eight chapters, on CD 2.

In August 2022, NIGHTWISH announced the addition of Jukka Koskinen (WINTERSUN) as an official member of the band. Koskinenwho made his live debut with NIGHTWISH in May 2021 at the band’s two interactive experiences, they had spent the previous year touring with NIGHTWISH as a session musician.

In November 2022, Jansen revealed that she was “cancer free” after undergoing surgery to have a tumor removed following a breast cancer diagnosis.

Photo credit: Tim Tronckoe (courtesy of Nuclear Blast)