With the news of the sudden passingof guitar hero and Melodic Death Metal leader Alexi Laiho of Children of Bodom and recently Bodom After Midnight, stars from across the music world have shared their condolences and memories. A who’s who of artists paid respects, as well as press notices from his current label Napalm Records, and his former label Nuclear Blast Records as well.
Children of Bodom founder Alexi Laiho has formed a new band, Bodom After Midnight! The group will make its live debut this summer! Also in the group are guitarist Daniel Freyberg (ex-Children Of Bodom), drummer Waltteri Väyrynen (Paradise Lost), bassist Mitja Toivonen (ex-Santa Cruz) and touring keyboardist Lauri Salomaa. Children of Bodom, in its last form, announced it would not continue after their final show in late 2019, ending that era, Laiho needed a new project. IT is expected that Bodom After Midnight will perform COB material live this summer, before writing originals for a future release. Laiho’s popular memoir, Chaos, Control & Guitar, which has shipped 11,000 copies and is only avaialble as of now in Finish, will come out in English in May from Johnny Kniga, an imprint of Werner Söderström Ltd.Continue reading
In an effort to clear the air of misconceptions by fans and media, the three former members of Children of Bodom have issued a statement less than two months after announcing their departures from the band. Jaska Raatikainen (drums), Henri “Henkka T. Blacksmith” Seppälä (bass) and Janne Wirman (keyboards) have confirmed that they are still the rightful owners of the COB brand. On November 1st, Raatikainen, Seppälä and Wirman issued a statement saying that they would leave the band after playing the final show of the band’s Finnish tour on December 15 at the Black Box in Helsinki Ice Hall. A short time later, Finnish music magazine Soundi reported that the rights to the Children of Bodomname are held by AA & Sewira Consulting Oy, the company owned by Raatikainen, Seppälä and Wirman. On June 28, the trio filed an application with the National Board of Patents and Registration of Finland, and their application was subsequently granted for a five-year period starting on October 1. As a result, Alexi Laiho, who is Children of Bodom’s singer, guitarist and main songwriter, isn’t authorized to use the band’s name without permission from Wirman, Raatikainen and Seppälä. Read the statement from the three members below.Continue reading
Deep in the Underground Atlanta, the city’s favorite entertainment district rests When you mention this venue’s name, most alternative artists will know exactly where you’re talking about. This iconic, massive building has three indoor venues that are cleverly called Hell, Purgatory, and Heaven. The largest room, Heaven, opened its doors last Thursday for the mighty Children of Bodom. Finland’s Melodic Death Metal masters, CoB recently released their tenth studio album, Hexed. This run of North American shows is promoting this new record and the band brought some fantastic Finnish friends to play with them. Along with Swallow the Sun and Wolfheart, Hotlanta was in for a night of sweet, savage, Scandinavian Metal. Continue reading
After the initial explosive assault of their first few albums, consistency became a problem for Finland’s Children Of Bodom and a sequence of agreeable but patchy records, brightened only by odd moments of genuine quality, has seen them gradually relinquishing their grip on their status as genuine contenders; still, undoubtedly a hugely popular act with a widespread fanbase, the fact remains that COB really should be sitting among the biggest hitters by now.Continue reading
Children of Bodom’s new album Hexed is coming next week, March 8th 2019, via Nuclear Blast Records. The band just dropped their new music video for their track “Platitudes and Barren Words”, which you can see right now!Continue reading
Melodic Death Metal legends Children of Bodom will release their highly-anticipated new album Hexed on March 8, 2019 via Nuclear Blast Records. Hexed will be available for pre-order starting December 7th with a single expected soon. Deins Forkas to create the album artwork. Henkka commented on the cover: “For some years I’ve wanted to try a different approach with our cover art. We are so used to digital art, so it’s really hard to do something else. Doing it completely with a computer is somewhat safe and convenient. This time we all agreed to try going old school. We found this cool dude and gave him simple instructions — the cover has to be purple and the reaper has to be central. Half a year later, we got his work, and with little tweaking, we now have the cover of ‘Hexed’. It is very different from what we are used to, even the Reaper looks different, but at the same time very spooky.”Continue reading
Of course you knew him from Murderdolls, in which he was “one of the other guys” in that aforenamed band created by Joey Jordison, the former drummer of a little nonet known as Slipknot. Perhaps you’re older school and remember him in Frankenstein Drag Queens from Planet 13, or even older school than that as some dude named Joseph Poole. But forget everything you knew about Wednesday 13, because, for the intents and purposes of these Condolences (Nuclear Blast), the Wednesday 13 you thought you knew is dead.Continue reading
Myrkur has generated lots of attention, and seemingly Amalie Bruun, primus motor, has received threats to her life for being a female musician doing the post black metal thing. It seems to be the ultimate blasphemy to certain individuals, that probably haven’t been there from the inception of the scene nor have they understood the rebellious primary foundation of the initial scene, where most of the legendary figures embrace both musical diversity and experimentation. I must admit to first seeing it as yet another cash-cow of everything that is black metal, like most things these days, it seems. However, with the release of her début album, M (Relapse), she won me over. Therefore I really wanted to catch her full set, as this would be my first exposure to her music in a live setting. Sadly, we didn’t manage to be at the festival site until Myrkur were in the middle of their set. Yet, even from afar, in between all the bustle from festival-goers elsewhere on the site, her angelic voice penetrated and created a welcoming atmosphere.
Gojira were simply incredible! It’s not the band I have played the most, although I became a fan around From Mars To Sirius (Roadrunner). But as a live band they are simply amazing! The level of musicianship, the songs’ ability to balance brutality and catchiness… It’s simply one of the best live bands in the metal genre these days, just like Behemoth. Both bands are able to create this energy that just makes the audience feed from it for the entire time the show lasts. With a set consisting of twelve songs, and with a good variation of songs from all their five albums, the show had a little for everyone of their fans. But maybe the most spectacular about the show was seeing them perform ‘Stranded’ live for the first time. That song manages to take some minor details and create an enormously catchy extreme metal song.
The mood was entirely different as we entered the tent stage again to catch Swedish gloomsters Katatonia. The band used to struggle live, but has since the mid 2000’s also become a live band worth catching. Their new album, The Fall Of Hearts (Peaceville) is really good, and it was nice to get to hear a couple of songs from it. The only negative aspect of the show was really that it didn’t last long enough, and that they neglected their back catalogue somewhat. Then again, they played ‘Nephilim’, and ‘In The White’, two personal favourites of mine, and two songs I never had expected for them to play. And of course the band played the hits, and by saying that, I am thinking of ‘My Twin’, and ‘July’.
Finishing off the Tuska experience: Children Of Bodom. Actually they seem to be more about calling themselves The Children of Bodom Hate Crew these days, which makes Alexi Laiho slightly come across as an emo boy at 37 years of age with mascara and nailpolish and an attempt at the teenage rebellion thing going with his image. Musically on the other hand the band are rock solid, and if you enjoy seeing keyboards tilted forwards to show off solo skills or you enjoy endless solos more reminding of power metal than extreme metal, I’m sure this would be the show for you. I, as you might have figured out, think Children Of Bodom are a bit too cheesy to my taste. I enjoyed my sixth serving of muiku immensely more than this last Tuska headliner.
WORDS BY PÅL LYSTRUP
PHOTOS BY TJ FOWLER PHOTOGRAPHY
Many (other than hard-core Bodom fanboys) lovers of the melodic death scene, justifiably, have a kind of love/hate thing going on with Children of Bodom, but people denying that Something Wild (Spinefarm Records) and Follow the Reaper (Spinefarm/Nuclear Blast) are anything less than classics of the genre are being wilfully contrary, in some sort of weird sceptic denial, or simply being ignorant.
It is fair to say, however, that pretty much everything else after that became either self-plagiarising or pedestrian, replacing Bodom with Boredom as the sound has become ever more focussed on speed and regurgitation of the same old licks, riffs and hooks. The last two releases finally signalled some new directions, and I’m pleased to be able to tell you that Bodom’s latest offering I Worship Chaos (Nuclear Blast) continues that step up, though I don’t think they’ll ever match the straightforward brilliance of Follow the Reaper.
Finally ditching that dated, reedy, bee-in-a-box sound for something more modern and meaty provides instant aural novelty, but it’s not just the guitar sound that’s new here as a lot of growing up is reflected in this work. I think ego has been a huge problem for this band over the last decade – it has turned each release into either a competition speed-fest or a quick ‘n’ dirty excuse to get back out on the road – but this album feels painstaking and heartfelt. All the usual Bodom elements are here of course, but there’s a great deal of new (for Bodom, at least) ground broken.
‘I Hurt’ is a strong opener and a classic Bodom track, but the slower tempo and improved sound allows you deeper into the song and validates your reasons for liking Bodom in the first place. ‘My Bodom’ is a pretty simple, “less is more”, affair that’s all the stronger for it. ‘Morrigan’ is a big surprise, as it wouldn’t sound out of place (vocals aside) on a Blind Guardian album! The titular ‘I Worship Chaos’ is a shout-a-long crowd pleaser. ‘Hold Your Tongue’ is reminiscent of old In Flames and ‘All For Nothing’ could almost be a ballad if it had sing-song vocals. Lovely.
So all in all, I Worship Chaos is well worth an hour or so of your time and some of your hard-earned; a continuation of the return to form for Finland’s heroes.