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The Finnish heavy metal band Sentenced released its debut album, Shadows of the Past, in the early '90s on a small French label; dissatisfied with their somewhat commonplace black-metal sound, they hired bassist/vocalist Taneli Jarva to provide more originality for 1992's North From Here. The record was more melodic and technically competent and got the band noticed in Sweden; it was followed in 1993 by a four-song EP, The Trooper, the title tune a cover of Iron Maiden's classic. This marked the beginning of a shift toward an even more melodic, British metal-influenced style, fleshed out on 1995's Amok and the additional EP Love and Death. Jarva left the band at this point, leaving guitarist Miika Tenkula and new vocalist Ville Laihiala as the musical focus of Sentenced. 1997's Down was the first effort by this revamped lineup; it was followed in 1998 by Story: A Recollection, a best-of compilation. The group returned in early 2000 with Crimson and again in 2002 with The Cold White Light. ~ Steve Huey