Children of Bodom: Follow the Reaper

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Children of Bodom: Follow the Reaper
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Children of Bodom: Follow the Reaper
Melodic Death Metal, Power Metal
Nuclear Blast Records
January 22nd, 2001
Release length: 38:56
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The third release by Children Of Bodom, entitled Follow The Reaper, is one of the most well known albums in metal today. This album has been heralded as both pointless by some, and a masterpiece by the rest. There is no denying this really is a great album, but just how great an album is it?

The band continues with their power metal style on this album, amping things up a bit musically in comparison to the previous albums. Follow The Reaper is clearly reliant on both the guitars and the keyboards, but moreso the keyboards then anything. While the the guitar solos on the album, like that in “Children Of Decadence” and “Everytime I Die” are simply spectacular, the keyboard solos on here are the real focus. It’s rare that you even get a keyboard solo, but even more rare that you actually get one with such power and technicality as you do on tracks like “Bodom After Midnight” and “Mask Of Sanity” which features a guitar and keyboard solo at the same time, making for a rather interesting listen. Unfortunately none of this is present for the track “Hellion”, which is a cover of a song by W.A.S.P. and is available on the Nuclear Blast Records pressing. Unfortunately, the track is just a generic song, and you can tell the difference in the mixx between the quality of the original tracks, and this cover song.

There really aren’t any negative points to this release. The track “Mask Of Sanity” is a great song, but due to the keyboards it feels a little more mainstream a song compared to the other tracks on this release. Plus, just listening to the music, it seems like the band is holding themselves back a bit with the speed and tenacity that would make this album perfect. For example, “Hate Me!” have blistering guitars and drums, whhich seriously leave you wishing the band put more faster paced moments. Depending on the version you have, at least you are greeted with one hell of a speed fest during “Kissing The Shadows” to close out the album. But then there are also random moments where the music breaks down, primarily right before a solo. But with all that said, there’s just too many positive things of this release for ranting about the few negatives, such as the true gem of the album, “Hate Me!” which, while it sounds a bit commercialized like “Mask Of Sanity”, the song is just catchy as hell and will easily become you’re new favorite song.

While this release isn’t exactly a masterpiece, it does deserve a lot of the priase it receives. The songs mentioned in the review will easily be stuck in your head, and every song on it sounds great, musically as well as with the production. If you’re looking for a good album you can throw in your CD player and just leave in it, this is one of those albums. Let’s just hope the band decides to not be as restrained as they sounded on this release in the future.

01. Follow The Reaper – 3:47
02. Bodom After Midnight – 3:44
03. Children Of Decadence – 5:34
04. Everytime I Die – 4:03
05. Mask Of Sanity – 3:59
06. Taste Of My Scythe – 3:58
07. Hate Me! – 4:45
08. Northern Comfort – 3:49
09. Kissing The Shadows – 4:32
Overall Score: 9/10
Children of Bodom (Band)
Children of Bodom (Logo)Physical review copy of this release provided by personal funds.