Children of Bodom
Follow The Reaper


5.0
classic

Review

by Mike Stagno EMERITUS
November 28th, 2006 | 348 replies


Release Date: 2000 | Tracklist


Review of the Month: November 2006

How many times can you pick up an album and say that it defines an entire genre? Not too often, huh? Well that's to be expected. But these albums are definitely out there. Powerslave, Land of the Free, Rust in Peace, Painkiller, all of these albums hold the crown of their respected genres, or at least in my opinion, but are there any recent albums that could bask in the same utterly metallic glory as the aforementioned albums? You could make a case for Children of Bodom's Follow the Reaper. Released in 2001, it was the band's third full length album, and by far their best. And in comparison with the rest of Bodom's discography, particularly early efforts Something Wild (my personal favourite) and Hatebreeder, that isn't exactly a statement to be taken lightly. So what you will about the albums of DragonForce (though their take on the genre is slightly difference, yeah, just a little on the slight side), Kalmah, or Norther, but in my humblest of opinions, Children of Bodom's Follow the Reaper represents the height of the extreme power metal genre, and a definite classic.

Follow the Reaper starts off quietly, with the a spoken section which reads as follows "Death be not proud, though some have called thee mighty and dreadful. Thou art not so." Just as the quote ends, the band suddenly blasts right into the opening song, Follow the Reaper. Just as the album defines the extreme power metal genre, the opening riff of the title track defines the album. Follow the Reaper (both song and album) is a very aggressive piece of work, complete with ear shattering solos, energetic heart pounding riffs, and technical yet eerie keyboards. It has pretty much anything a fan of power metal could ask for. Well, almost everything, but we'll get to that later. The relentless riffing is quite reminiscent of a thrash metal band, yet with a power metal twist. Songs like Children of Decadence and Mask of Sanity, among others, definitely showcase this aspect, something all fans of power, thrash, and ever black metal bands should enjoy. When I listen to metal, the most important thing, first and foremost, is the music. Bodom definitely surpasses all expectations in this area, with superb efforts all around.

Wait a minute; I said that there is area where power metal fans might not be satisfied in, yet I rated this 5?! Well, when I said this I didn't mean that there was a major weakness. But what I really meant was that, in general, most power metal bands make use of a vocalist who, in most cases, sings in falsetto. Children of Bodom do not have this. Instead they turn to guitarist Alexi Laiho for vocals. Like his power metal counterparts Kalmah and Norther, Laiho opts instead for a harsh shriek rather than singing. But that's perfectly fine, especially for those who enjoy such talents in the black metal genre. Truthfully, at first it was difficult to get into Children of Bodom because of the band's vocals, but once you get over this hill its smooth sailing from there (if that makes sense to you). On Follow the Reaper, Alexi's efforts are very strong, as can be heard in songs such as Bodom After Midnight or Northern Comfort. The vocals do not really vary throughout the album, yet they still manage to sound fresh and solid. Not to mention that they fit the aggressive overtones of the music very well. They might take a little while to grow on some listeners, but the efforts of Alexi on Follow the Reaper are definitely enjoyable, and very well done.

Even though Bodom's debut album, Something Wild, is my favourite of the three that I've heard, I'll still maintain that Follow the Reaper is their best. I really enjoy the take no prisoners style that Bodom effortlessly and effectively creates through their music, as it is very infectious and a hell of a lot of fun to listen to. There is something that almost any fan of metal can enjoy from power metal to thrash metal, to death metal, to black metal, to even classic, Iron Maiden-esque moments. This album will most definitely be looked upon as a classic in the coming years (or maybe already), and is easily one of the best albums in not only extreme power metal, but metal in general. Check this out right away.

Recommended Tracks:
Follow the Reaper
Children of Decadence
Mask of Sanity
Bodom After Midnight



Recent reviews by this author
Funeral for a Friend ConduitPropagandhi Failed States
Tycho DiveMegadeth Th1rt3en
Fair to Midland Arrows and AnchorsArch Enemy Khaos Legions
user ratings (1742)
Chart.
4.1
excellent
other reviews of this album
1 of

Comments:Add a Comment 
Angmar
November 28th 2006


2689 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

yah this album is pretty godly great review!!!

metallicaman8
November 28th 2006


4677 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Nice review, but I don't think Rust In Peace could be credited with defining it's genre.

Mikesn
Emeritus
November 28th 2006


3709 Comments


i just can't bring myself to call these guys power metal
Yeah, I think you'll have a bunch of people agreeing with you here. But I for me, power metal probably best genre to classify it. Whatever.

Digging: Grimes - Visions

Angmar
November 28th 2006


2689 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

to chans comment- I like the energy in this album it is almost like party metal if you know what i mean. I have heard 5 COB albums and own 4. My favorite song off the album is Children of Decadence because everything off it is awsome from the opener to the end. And as for the genre it is like Black Power Metal in some ways because of the added keyboards ans such. So stop negging me and pretending like you know what you are talking about!!!

metallicaman8
November 28th 2006


4677 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

The funny thing is you didn't describe the music at all there. You just said it was awesome and you liked the energy. You haven't proven Chan wrong.

Mikesn
Emeritus
November 28th 2006


3709 Comments


In 20 minutes, this got more comments than my Hatebreeder review did. :o

This isn't what I'd think of if I'd think of party metal. But then again, maybe I don't know what party metal is.

Bfhurricane
November 28th 2006


6197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Excellent review, though I can't agree with it being a classic like I believe Hatebreeder is. This is iffy-power metal. I mean it's awesome, but you could put this into many different genres IMO. But thats opinion... nice review

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
November 28th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

CoB are pretty much just darker than average power metal. Pretty good album for genre, nice review as always Mike.

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
November 28th 2006


16089 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Some power metal has good vocals besides this. Kamelot's Roy Kahn, for example, has one of the best voices in all of metal atm imo.
atm imo

Mikesn
Emeritus
November 28th 2006


3709 Comments


Excellent review, though I can't agree with it being a classic like I believe Hatebreeder is.
I'm pretty much the opposite there. :p

Yeah definitely darker than most. I probably enjoy this more than Sonata Arctica or something like that, but I'll listen to both. Just no Freedom Call or Hammerfall. I haven't heard any Kemelot yet.

Thanks everyone.This Message Edited On 11.28.06

ToWhatEnd
November 28th 2006


3172 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I love this album, quality review as usual.

SCREAM!
November 28th 2006


10206 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Nice review. AMAZING ALBUM! possibly my favourite album ever

Thor
November 28th 2006


10200 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album is fantastic, but there's a few points where the album drags a bit (Mask of Sanity and Hate Me!), but otherwise this is a great release, and my 2nd favorite one from the Bodom boys.

Bfhurricane
November 28th 2006


6197 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Although I rate this higher, I might enjoy Sonata Arctica's "Ecliptica" more. It's an easier listen and much more melodic. But I might just be saying that since I just got it :-P

Tyler
Emeritus
November 28th 2006


7926 Comments


I can't stand this band. Alexi is a mediocre vocalist and an unoriginal guitarist. It's fun stuff, but I honestly don't see anything overly special.

Great review as always. You're a machine.

RottedFlesh
November 28th 2006


213 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Their best album!

Intransit
November 28th 2006


2797 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review. I'd like this album more if Alexi's vocals weren't just so kdsjflksdjflkdsfj. He is a stellar guitarist though.

And mike, if you havent heard Kamelot's The Black Halo, you are doing your ears a grave injustice. Its probably one of my top 5 metal albums of all time.

EDIT: Comment number 500 /m/

and lol @ cocaine who has a manowar avatar yet and uses the word unoriginal. This Message Edited On 11.28.06

Mikesn
Emeritus
November 28th 2006


3709 Comments


Wow, quite the turn out...

I'll have to check Kamelot out after Dark Tranquillity then.

Otisbum
November 28th 2006


1912 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I alt+3 power metal, and I'm picking up this album soon (if not receiving it for x-mas), Hate Me! is what got me into these guys, and I love that song, but the other ones are awesome too.
And nice review. Congrats on almost 100.

So Alexi is both the vocalist and the lead guitarist?
EDIT: Wow, just like canyoneer, 500th comment.This Message Edited On 11.28.06

Zebra
Moderator
November 28th 2006


2647 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

In general I strongly dislike power metal but this album isn't so bad, it's actually fairly impressive. The guitar work is very fun and energetic and I really enjoy Alexis voice for some strange reason.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy