This is my first Children of Bodom purchase. I realize that it's late in the catalogue, but oh well. I heard a few tracks from the Internet from previous releases, which kind of got me interested, so I decided to pick this album up.
First off, let me say that I am NOT, in ANY way turned on by screaming death-metal style vocals AT ALL. So why did I give this album 5 stars? I honestly have NO IDEA! COB are not what I consider the "typical death-metal band." In fact, one could hardly call them death metal at all, given their signature classic heavy metal sound that is remniscent of Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motorhead, and Megadeth. The growling, screaming, nihilistic vocals that encompass every track do not bother me in the slightest, which is what makes me so curious as to why I'm so blown away by this release.
There is nothing redeeming in the sound or the lyrics of this album. Although tongue-in-cheek, and poking fun at most of heavy metal's most revered cliches, the album is nevertheless highly negative in tone, promoting anger, aggression, and cynicism. Yet at the same time, there's an undeniable characteristic of great fun that manages to shine through despite it all.
Production values are top-notch, which, like Finnish metal band Nightwish, serve only to continually amaze me with the level of effort and polish put into these albums. Simply put: if you turn this album up loud when you're driving in your car, your windows WILL rattle, and people WILL give you paranoid looks when you pull up to the red light next to them!
Unless you're used to thrash or speed metal, you may have a hard time getting into the rather harsh and rough tone of the album. If, however, you like cynical, angry, yet STRANGELY happy music, then you'll definitely dig this release!