“Return To Eden” is the third and final part of Timo Tolkki’s metal opera Avalon and it was released on 14th June by Frontiers Music. The former Stratovarius guitarist had revealed the Avalon project back in 2013 and the three albums released have featured a number of high profile singers and musicians. I included the track “Promises” on the Friday NI Rocks Show on 3rd May and the NI Rocks A-Z Show on 11th June, whilst “Hear My Call” was part of the Friday NI Rocks Show on 24th May.

The Avalon trilogy commenced with “The Land of New Hope” in 2013 and that album told the story of a group of survivors on Earth following a series of natural catastrophes. It featured Sharon del Adel from Within Temptation, Michael Kiske from Helloween, Elize Ryd from Amaranthe, Russell Allen from Sympony X, Rob Rock from Impellitteri and Derek Sherinian from Dream Theatre amongst others.

The second album “Angels of the Apocalypse” was released a year later and again featured Elize Ryd. Other performers included Floor Jansen from Nightwish, Fabio Lione from Rhapsody of Fire, Simone Simons from Epica and Caterina Nix (with whom Tolkki would later release the first Chaos Magic album).

“Return to Eden” had been delayed partly by Tolkki’s health issues and he has been assisted in the recording and production process by Aldo Lonobile from Italian band Secret Sphere. The list of guest performers is perhaps a little less high profile for the final album and it includes Anneke Van Giersbergen, previously of The Gathering, Todd Michael Hall from Riot V and Zak Stevens, formerly of Savatage.

The main musicians on the album are Timo Tolkki on lead guitar, Andrea Buratto on bass, Antonio Agate on keyboards, Giulio Capone on drums and Aldo Lonobile on guitars.


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About “NI Rocks Recommends”

The simple idea behind “NI Rocks Recommends” is to acknowledge and promote some of the great music being submitted to Rock Radio NI. The albums that I’ll be recommending are those that you’ll hear me playing tracks from on my shows. I'll not be giving marks or ratings or analyzing the tracks in great detail; just telling you something about the artist and the album. It’s a personal recommendation to go check something out, not a traditional “review”!

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