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Finnish prog-folk trio Auri is the side project of Nightwish members Tuomas Holopainen and Troy Donockley, together with the former's wife, singer and violinist Johanna Kurkela. The trio had planned to record an album together as early as 2011, but had been unable to do so owing to their commitments to their other musical projects. In 2014, they worked together on Holopainen's solo debut, The Life and Times of Scrooge, but that album did not stray too far from the bombast of his day job. Finally, in 2017, during downtime from Nightwish, they managed to pursue their alternative sound. Naming their project Auri after a character from Patrick Rothfuss' popular fantasy novel series The Kingkiller Chronicle (which also inspired some of the lyrics), they set about recording their self-titled debut album at Peter Gabriel's Real World studios in Wiltshire, England. Released by Nuclear Blast in 2018, Auri was a subdued and atmospheric affair, heavily influenced by Donockley's Irish folk background and elements of world music, soundtracks, and prog rock.
© John D. Buchanan /TiVo
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