There are very few single bands or albums that can change a person's life - and this is one of them. 'Follow the Reaper' was the first COB cd I had ever heard. I ended up listening to it all the way through 7 times the first day - I thought it was THAT good.
These 10 well-constructed, very consistent masterpieces contain fast-paced, melodic riffs along with dual keyboard and guitar solos. The vocals of Alexi Laiho on this particular album are more of a harsh growl, remeniscent of earlier Emperor and the black metal scene. It's been said that his vocal influences included Phil Anselmo of Pantera and Mille Petrozza of Kreator, but I don't see a simularity between either of them.
Tracks 1-3 (Follow the Reaper, Bodom After Midnight, and Children of Decadence) are all a mixture of speed/thrash and neoclassical metal with black metal-type vocals, ultimately combining melody with speed and aggression.
Track 4, "Everytime I Die", is the slowest song on the album, but is not considered to by slow by any means. Although it's aimed mostly towards suicide, the song forms a bond to your ears due to the great melodies.
Tracks 5-9 (Mask of Sanity, Taste of my Scythe, Hate Me!, Northern Comfort, Kissing the Shadows) have some of the best solos ever written. The lead guitar work combined with the keyboards result in something very special, and at the time, something that was newer to the metal scene. "Kissing the Shadows" has a keyboard vs. guitar "Solo Duel" towards the end of the song, which contain the best solos on the album and probably the best COB solo parts they've ever written.
The final song is a cover of W.A.S.P's song "Hellion" from their debut 1984 self-titled album. The cover is great, they did a good job converting it to more death metal sound more than anything. Alexi wrote his own solo for the song, which ended up to be quite a good one. If you haven't heard 'Follow the Reaper', you need to. It's a MUST for a decent heavy metal collection.
A little light on the information, but that's nothing big. I agree with you about the very first comment - this album was life-changing for me. Every song (save the cover, which I can overlook) is flawless Finnish power metal. Kalmah, norther, Nightwish, Imperanon, Wintersun, and any other extreme power metal act will never metch this album. Follow the Reaper set the bar for all similar bands to try (and ultimately fail) to match.
Many superb tracks on this album. This is my favorite COB album; and my eyes the definitive. I like the new direction; but I would wait for the rest of time for another album like Follow The Reaper.This Message Edited On 04.03.06
Good review though a little short. I still think Hatebreeder has better riffs, but there arent too many bands that ever produce an album as good as this one. This album is a definite recommendation for anyone whos into metal.
And this album didnt change my life, Hatebreeder got to me first :-).
Wow this album is unreal, best work by Bodom without a doubt. The only track I skip is "Every Time I Die", I'm not saying its bad, but Im never really in the mood for that kind of song. Short albeit good review.