Despite the stereotypical notion that hardcore heavy metal is full of devil-worshipping, makeup dabbling freaks with excessive piercings, the noble land of Finland presents a different picture. At first glance, Children of Bodom fits the persona perfectly. With an album title like Are You Dead Yet? people are bound to jump to conclusions. However, a cautious observation will reveal an almost comical European characterization of the American trend.
Alexi Laiho, the group’s founder/vocalist/guitarist and a rock icon on the Finnish charts, has composed arrangements that hint at familiarity with a consistent dedication to hammered power chords throughout the album and edgy solos. The music resembles System of a Down, Ozzy Osbourne and Metallica melded into a Scandinavian beast, but the nature of the band has led it to create some pretty diverse covers in the past, including one of Britney Spear’s infamous “Oops I Did It Again.” Compared to other Children of Bodom albums, this one is slightly slower and the keyboard is less prevalent, but the songs are all interestingly distinct. Upon hearing all nine tracks several times, however, you may finding yourself asking the very question that the title poses.
Archived article by Aniq Rahman