Few bands these days set out to do something creatively unique without giving any thought to whether or not it would be commercially acceptable. In 1997, a Finnish quintet known as CHILDREN OF BODOM got together with that sole intention of playing music that would adhere to no previous constructed guidelines. Their uncompromising attitude and undying work ethic helped them become one of the most influential thrash metal bands to emerge in recent years. Putting no limitations on their musical insanity they embraced a furious onslaught of dual guitar shredding mixed with dazzling keyboard mastery. This distinctive songwriting style walked a fine line between melody and thrash quickly catching the attention of metal fans worldwide. Almost six years later the group continues to create some of the most relevant, exhilarating music as they rapidly approach the coveted legendary status so many strive for. Their fourth full-length offering, Hate Crew Deathroll, takes things to the next level proving to fans and critics alike that this hate crew are only just getting started.
CHILDREN OF BODOM formed in Espoo, Finland around spring 1993 and were named in reference to one of the most notorious mass murders in Scandinavian history. In the early days there were lots of line-up changes and the only two original members in the current line-up are guitarist/lead vocalist Alexi Laiho and drummer Jaska Raatikainen. In August 1997, Laiho took a break to join the kings of Finnish dark/black metal, Thy Serpent, as their new lead guitarist. In retrospect this move proved to be a very positive one for CHILDREN OF BODOM as Sami Tenetz, vocalist of Thy Serpent, made a visit to the Spinefarm office one day with the raw mix of CHILDREN OF BODOM's debut album, and it completely blew everyone away. Laiho and company ended up signing a three album deal with Spinefarm Records the next day.
Laiho concentrated his efforts solely on CHILDREN OF BODOM and with a rejuvenated line-up intact the group immediately entered Astia Studios in their hometown. Their debut album, Something Wild, was released in Finland in November 1997 and then things started to happen pretty fast. After numerous European shows they were already being hailed as the new kings of the metal underground by the European media. A licensing deal with Nuclear Blast Records for central Europe and the U.S. was soon inked and with a huge buzz around them they decided to immediately head back into the studio.
The group upped the ante with 1999's Hatebreeder that featured nine blistering tracks pushing every musical aspect to its absolute maximum. Their second full-length album garnered positive reviews worldwide and the group quickly established a strong national presence. Due to the incredible press reactions they were able to make their first U.S. appearance at the esteemed Milwaukee Metalfest that summer. They were easily the most talked about band of the weekend. Just two years later the hate crew returned with Follow The Reaper that saw them focus more on their songwriting, offering catchier melodies and groove-filled hooks, while not compromising their aggression. Unfortunately, they were not able to make it back to the U.S. to support the album.
CHILDREN OF BODOM were now determined to create their most destructive, overwhelming offering to date and with Hate Crew Deathroll this goal was achieved. They went back to Astia Studios with producer Anssi Kippo and the result is nothing short of breathtaking. The group have taken their songwriting to new heights incorporating more aggression, melody and sheer overwhelming power knowing no limits to their musical boundaries. Laiho spits out lyrics with vitriolic hate, the twin guitar insanity shred everything in their wake with razor-sharp precision as the rhythm section pounds away like the world is about to end. This is all while the keyboards complete the path of destruction with fervor and precision.
Over the past year COB have been extremely busy promoting their new album (released on Spinefarm Records in Europe earlier this year) throughout Japan and Europe touring with labelmates Shadows Fall and Soilwork. The group also garnered mainstream acclaim after their rousing appearance at this year's SXSW festival. Century Media's main focus now is to concentrate their efforts in building a strong presence for them throughout the U.S. starting with a nationwide tour in November.
It will not be long before the hate crew bring death to your door.