Review Summary: dooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooom
It is cold as *** in Finland. I mean, I'm from the south United States, so I have no grasp of what the word "cold" really means, but still, Finland is cold as ***. Luckily for us, that seems to be a relatively good thing, because instead of focusing on normal people activities like going outside, the metal-fisting residents of Finland spent their time crafting one of the finest death metal scenes of the early nineties. Rippikoulu was one of the earliest of this wave of Finndeath. They were originally formed as a punk/metal outfit (which is a bit strange seeing the sound they eventually evolved) and never made it past the demo stage of recording. They would go on to see only two demos released before the death of their guitarist in 1995 and the eventual demise of the band. This is unfortunate because the material they managed to release in this short time, more specifically their second demo, Musta Seremonia
, ranks among the best releases of the unholy Finnish death metal scene.
is essentially a death/doom record. The Finnish death scene was always mostly doom and gloom, but Rippikoulu's sound is far more doom than most of the recognizable acts of the time. The cavernous low end brings about a whole new meaning to the phrase bone-crushing heaviness. From the very start Musta Seremonia
crawls along like some deformed monstrosity, oozing out each riff into the twisted pool of death and doom they so masterfully created. This doesn't mean the pace is stagnant, for in several places the tempo jumps to a gallop, but the majority of the record dwells on the ball-smashing heavy low end of the doom tinged riffs.
For being only a second demo the production is surprisingly clear, and benefits things more than a muddy or murky production probably would have. However, it still retains that deep, organic sound that makes death metal sound so good. The colossal, subterranean stench of Musta's
31 minute run time, enhanced by the inhumanly guttural vocals typical of most Finndeath, makes it a paradigm of the unholy reign of the early Finnish death metal scene. While not as well known as the heroes of the scene, Rippikoulu crafted a record that only added to the legendary status of the ranks of the frozen death metal scene of Scandinavia's drunken eastern counterpart. If you like doom, and death, and having your face smashed under the weight of a ten-ton ***ing hammer, the Musta Seremonia
is a must for your collection.