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Apr 16, 2014







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Korpiklaani, Ukon Wacka
Nuclear Blast Records, Feb. 15

By Eric Saeger news@hippopress.com



Somehow I’m back in the good graces of the small but always fascinating Nuclear Blast Records — I tend to believe that their new too-picky press-feed system nearly sank the ship. But that’s for me to pretend to worry about, not you, and meanwhile we can play a little catch-up with one of their real winners. This Finnish fivesome touts themselves as “pagan-metal,” which works I suppose if genre labels aren’t required to be painfully accurate. It’s the same bunch as ever with this new one, although the production is finally really befitting them. Add Flying V’s and Red Bull to Gogol Bordello and that’d be this, the experience of being chased around the block by a mini-mob of grog-splattered Iron Age frost giants with their Marshalls pegged to 11. Another way to say it might be “Dropkick Murphys possessed by Slayer,” but we’re wasting time if you’re already clued to this madness. This time, they dabble in sissy-boy neo-hard-rock (“Päät Pois Tai Hirteen”) before rudely (and thankfully) canning the idea and doing what they do best for the duration. One of their most hilarious metal-polkas ever is “Tequila,” wherein they randomly holler “Mexico!” and “Tequila!” over their accordions and thrash-punk, as if to say “Look mom! A song!” A+ —Eric W. Saeger






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