Silver Lake by Esa Holopainen

Silver Lake by Esa Holopainen backstory

Amorphis axeman Esa Holopainen had been planning a solo album for years and spring 2020 seemed like the perfect time to bring that long-held project to fruition.

As the global pandemic put a halt to live music, one of Finland’s most accomplished guitarists set about contacting a who’s who of fabled metal singers and Silver Lake was born.

Jonas Renkse (Katatonia), Einar Solberg (Leprous), Björn “Speed” Strid (Soilwork), Anneke Van Giersbergen and more were all too happy to jump straight in.

And Holopainen worked remotely with his new recruits to lay down a hefty nine-track debut.

Mastering was completed earlier this year by Svante Forsbäck (Rammstein, Volbeat, The Rasmus) at Sonic Pump studios.

But Storm is the first opportunity for fans to get a taste of what’s to come from what could be the surprise package of 2021.

In Esa Holopainen’s own words:

Storm is the first release from the Silver Lake album and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I do. 

“Check out the amazing video directed by Owe Lingvall. 

“It was filmed in the Canary Islands where Håkan [Hemlin, aka Nordman] and Owe spent a lot of time finding perfect locations. 

Storm is a catchy and emotional song where Håkan did incredible work. 

“I’m really honoured that I got him on board and this song is a good proof that he is still one of the top vocalists. Shine on friends!”  

The verdict on Storm

Think you know Esa Holopainen? Think again.

The Amorphis man might be best known for his heavy metal chops.

But Storm is a laid back, slow burner of a song that’s as brooding as it is beautiful.

Swede Håkan Hemlin’s uplifting vocal is juxtaposed perfectly with an understated riff and moody keys.

There’s more than a hint of classic Mark Knopfler at the heart of Holopainen’s masterful fretwork.

And Storm successfully fuses 80s cool with a 21st attitude to bring fans back to the future.

The start of something special?

Sounds like it.

What’s next for Silver Lake by Esa Holopainen?

The debut album drops on May 28 via Nuclear Blast and features guitar hero Holopainen in tandem with a slew of big-name vocal collaborators.

There is talk of a follow-up in the works and select shows — coronavirus and Amorphis demands permitting.