MetalBite Review by Luka on 4/17/2002
Unless Children of Bodom
redeem themselves after the mediocre “Follow the Reaper”
and go back to the genius “Hatebreeder”
style I see Kalmah
as the new kings of Finnish metal. One part death-thrash, one part black, and one part power metal, (add brilliant lead guitarist/composer) is the recipe for “Bodom Metal”, as I now call the trend, and it seems to be something Kalmah
were born with.
I am nuts for this sound! Power metal puts a smile on my face and makes me feel warm inside, but I cringe and frown when the fairy-voices start singing and the cheesy music kicks in. Kalmah
put a smile on my face but I am laughing with them, not at them. “Bodom Metal” is essentially a much darker, more extreme and potent form of power metal. Kalmah
readily massacre and modernize everything from traditional metal-style songs (title-track: greatest song on here!) to moving epics ('Human Fates'
), to the unique Children of Bodom
-sound songs, which tend to borrow from classical music ('Swamphell'
). The production has left the guitars slick and sharp, and sometimes sounding a little weak, but the album’s focus on harmony and lead guitar rather than mean, chugging riffs makes that unavoidable.
Now I hardly want to create the impression that Kalmah
are a shameless Children of Bodom
rip-off. While both share many basic guidelines and clearly sound alike there are still a number of fundamental differences between the two. Kalmah
are more interested in energy and a powerful pumping beat. Technical sections and blast-beats are reserved only for verse lines and pre-solo arrangements to suffocate and hammer you into the ground before the strong grooves break loose for a chorus or solo. The solos themselves often have a more carefree and moving style resembling old 80’s bands like WASP
or Judas Priest
. Children of Bodom
innovated pretty much all of their musical endeavors, Kalmah
still stick to certain tried-n-true methods of heavy metal.
Both “Bodom Metal” geniuses reached a climax with their second album. The infamous Children
stumbled after that but can the bold and determined boys from Kalmah
take the already revolutionary sound even further?! Let us pray that the gods of metal are generous...
Catchy, happy, melodic and bursting with energy and solos! Kalmah
’s style was right up my alley, one of the best metal releases I’ve heard in a long time.
out of 10