Release Date: Mar 8, 2011
Record label: Fontana Universal
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Heavy Metal, Death Metal, Power Metal, Speed/Thrash Metal, Scandinavian Metal
March 8, 2011 should be a day metal enthusiasts remember: for the release of Relentless Reckless Forever. The seventh studio album by Children of Bodom surpasses their previous work to reach new heights of metal epicness, which is no mean feat for the Finnish quintet. Alexi Laiho and Roope Latvala are a dynamic guitar duo that has been, for years, arguably one of the best in contemporary metal.
Mr. Reaper looks more and more absurd with each passing Children of Bodom album cover. On the last album, he didn’t even show his face, just his stupid scythe and what looked like spilled red wine. Either he’s an increasingly shy guy, or he’s an imposter. Yeah, that explains it. No wonder the ….
The threat is real. Children Of Bodom are what patched-jacketwearing, anti-drugs lobbyists might like to call the cannabis resin of extreme metal. Though you could jam their records night and day and still not grow batwings and fangs, unleash the Kraken and find yourself written into The Omen’s denouement, Children Of Bodom are nonetheless good-times gateway metal, clearing the Left-Hand Path for the kids.
Ask heavy metal detractors what rubs them the wrong way the most about the genre, and one possible reason could be that, more often than not, metallists take themselves way too seriously. But that can't be said about Children of Bodom, who have showed their lighter side when it comes to their knack for selecting cover tunes over the years (Britney Spears, Kenny Rogers, etc. ).
Power metal – a kind of high-camp Eurovision take on Iron Maiden – has two main constituencies in its fanbase: lonely World of Warcraft addicts with no sense of irony whatsoever, and vintage Dio T-shirt-wearing hipsters whose ironic detachment tips dangerously into the red. But while Children of Bodom subscribe to many of power metal's hallmarks – no song is so epic that it can't be augmented further by a swathe of synth washes or duelling guitars and harpsichords – there is enough dirty riffing, rasped invectives and breakneck thrash on this, their seventh studio album, to appeal to the kind of metal aficionado for whom a belief in dragons and wizards isn't compulsory. And any band that can crib a melody from the soundtrack of horror movie classic Seven Notes in Black without sullying the original, as CoB do in the exemplary title track, deserves far more than an ironically raised eyebrow in appreciation.
Review Summary: Relentless Reckless Forever is a step up from Blooddrunk, yet still walks on paths that have been well-trodden over the past several yearsThe basics behind Children Of Bodom’s sound haven’t changed since Blooddrunk, an album almost universally panned by critics across the spectrum; a move that doesn’t put the Finns’ latest album Relentless Reckless Forever in a good position from the get-go. The album still has one foot in the door in regards to the tactics employed on Blooddrunk to bring about an accessible amalgamation of power, thrash and melodic death metal to the masses who followed in the wake of its release. Here’s the thing, though, and the one aspect that makes Relentless Reckless Forever worth mentioning- the other foot is firmly planted on the other side of the threshold.