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Tales Along This Road

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Album Review

Finland's Korpiklaani may indulge themselves in the occasional Scandinavian folk breakdown (pipes, accordion, and fiddle), but at its heart, this hard-hitting sextet produces fits of pure snow-capped heavy metal. Their third full-length album, Tales Along This Road, has its feet firmly planted within the burgeoning Viking metal scene, but where bands like Stratovarius and Falkenbach build their fantasy worlds from the oft-pillaged chest of power metal cliché, Korpiklaani take their inspiration from ages old Finnish folk songs, often incorporating them unchanged into the mix. There are no epic, three-tiered symphonic monstrosities to be found here, just ten brutal, occasionally pretty, and startlingly concise songs about ice, Odin, and binge drinking that sound like a Norse Flogging Molly. Vocalist/guitarist Jonne Järvelä snarls and sneers like a hardcore punk with a secret stash of early Accept albums, and whether he's singing in his native tongue ("Tuli Kokko") or welcoming the listener to "the land of ice and snow" (on the meteoric "Rise"), it's impossible to not yearn for a few flagons of ale and a warm pelt to pass out on.


Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Finnish folk-metal ensemble Korpiklaani (Forest Clan) formed in 2002 after the members of Shaman decided to update both their sound and name. Taking cues from both the Scandinavian metal scene and the burgeoning progressive folk movement, vocalist/guitarist Jonne Järvelä, violinist Jaakko Lemmetty, drummer Matti "Matson" Johansson, bass player Arto Tissari, guitarist Toni Honkanen, and percussionist Ali Määttä released their debut, Spirit of the Forest, on Napalm Records in 2003. The group gained...
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Tales Along This Road, Korpiklaani
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