After releasing two of the most acclaimed metal albums of all time in Finland - 1997's 'Something Wild' and 1999's 'Hatebreeder' - Children Of Bodom present us their brand new offering 'Follow The Reaper'. Fasten the seat belt, you're in for one hell of a ride.
Some bands are just born to play great music, no matter if in the first, second or tenth album. And Children Of Bodom has proved to both critics and public that they deserve to be in this category. Their debut brought upon the metal scene a firestorm of aggressive riffing together with raw, high-pitched extreme vocals never heard before. 'Hatebreeder' added the classical melodies and the fast, ultra melodic guitar harmonies. 'Follow The Reaper' somehow manages to fuse both into a massive, flawless wall of sound. Even if the instrumental acrobatics have less space, all the synth harmonies and blazing guitar solos are here to be heard.
The album starts fast with the title track, which sets the mood for the rest of the album, with highlights for the tempo changes of 'Bodom After Midnight' , the fast paced 'Mask Of Sanity' and the platinum single 'Hate Me!', though there are absolutely no fillers in the nine tracks.
The production does total justice to the music played by the Finnish quintet, done by the legendary Peter Tatgren (from Hypocrisy) in the also legendary Abyss Studio. Crystal clear, heavy as hell and vibrant are just some of the words that could be used to describe it.
Sadly, 'Follow The Reaper' stops at 38'' of playing time, like their previous releases. However, the music is so intense and rich that the short length ends up being more than adequate. As a bonus track some prints will feature the WASP cover 'Hellion', arranged in such a monstrous way that even Blackie Lawless wouldn't be capable of.
A perfect metal jewel in every aspect, this album deserves the highest praises and will most certainly strike all Children Of Bodom fans right in the face in the first spin.
(Review taken from "Sweet Suffering EZine)