Korpiklaani - Voice of Wilderness - 2005 - Napalm Records
Cottages & Saunas Journey Man Fields In Flames Pine Woods Spirit Of The Forest Native Land Hunting Song Ryyppäjäiset Beer Beer Old Tale Kädet Siipinä (Hands As Their Wings)
Authentic Finnish humpaa-metal bands are hard to come by these days, with Finntroll the only one that comes to mind for most people. And so with Korpiklaani comparisons to their countrymen are inevitable, but do not let these fool you. These fellows play a unique brand of folk metal that comes from a mixing of traditional Finnish polka (humpaa) with heavy metal. As a follow-up to their first release, Spirit of the Forest, Voice of Wilderness does an excellent job to continue band leader Jonne Jarvela's reputation as one of the premier musicians in Finland. Jonne's vocal style is very gritty and deep, but not quite a growl. The inclusion of folk instruments such as the violin and flute give the album an authentic touch that is absent when synthesizers are used. The very talented Hittavainen especially shines on the track "Pine Woods" where the sounds of his country flute are so powerful that images of imaginary hills, lakes and forests drift in and out of my mind. The electric guitars and bass on this album are solid but nothing special; however the acoustic guitar stands out at times, such as during the intro to "old Tale". Matson's drumming is quite good but often makes Ali's hand-drumming on his set of more traditional animal-skinned drums inaudible. However, during portions of "Pine Woods" and "Spirit of the Forest" his beating can be heard. Again, this adds another degree of authenticity. Far from a concept album, the lyrical content of this album varies from retelling of Finnish folk tales (Old Song) to odes to the band's beautiful homeland (Native Land) to downright silly yet still enjoyable (Beer, Beer). Any fan of folk metal will love Voice of Wilderness. Or, if you're just looking for something a little different, pick up this album!
Lineup: Jonne - Vocals/Guitar Honka - Guitar Cane - Guitar Arto - Bass Hittavainen - Violin/Jouhikko/Flute Ali - Percussion Matson - Drums