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A Review of the Album Halo of Blood by Finnish Death Metal Band Children of Bodom

Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.

What Is the Musical Style of Halo In Blood Like?

Finnish death metal band Children of Bodom could be a mixed bag in terms of the genre for some people. Their 2013 studio album called Halo of Blood continues in the style of heavy death metal with riffs that seem to have that feel where they kind of just chug along.

Alexi "Wildchild" Laiho, rhythm and lead guitarist of the band Children of Bodom active since 1993.

Alexi "Wildchild" Laiho, rhythm and lead guitarist of the band Children of Bodom active since 1993.

There have been exceptions such as the really fast song Northpole Throwdown which was written two years before Halo of Blood came out. Espoo Finland’s Children of Bodom has sort of slowed down their musical pace and they have established a kind of chunkier, heavier sound that is not much like the neoclassical death metal style of their first three albums. If 2008’s Blooddrunk was their weakest moment musically before this review, as of 2019, Halo of Blood may the weakest musical moment for this famous Finnish death metal band.

"Damaged Beyond Repair"

Halo of Blood May Be Children of Bodom's Weakest Album

In the song called Dead Man’s Hand on You, the band is trying to sound like the famous melodic death metal band In Flames because remember the song Satellites and Astronauts? The vocals that are soft were trying to imitate that song and it just does not fit in the context of this album. The opening song called Waste of Skin in terms of the structure follows the songs on Are You Dead Yet? I know that there is an 8 year difference between that album and this one but Halo of Blood is weaker than that one. Halo of Blood the title track has the same dark and dreary lyrics that this band usually uses. The title track stylistically sounds like Catamenia but unfortunately, Children of Bodom does not have the technical capability in their later albums to match Catamenia. Although the last three songs in Halo of Blood are pretty good, unfortunately as of this early listen, I will have to say that the album is the weakest in the career of Children of Bodom.

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Are There Any Strong Points About the Album Halo in Blood? Yes

As we give Halo of Blood a second listen, Waste of Skin which is the first song of this album starts out with a strong thundering riff followed by some pretty creative melodies. It may be a better song than Deadnight Warrior (the song that starts out the Something Wild album). Children of Bodom are now mostly a heavy death metal band so it would not be entirely accurate to call them a melodic death metal band. However, just because a heavy metal album gets off to a good start it does not always mean that it will stay strong.

“Damaged Beyond Repair” has a good fast picking kind of riff followed by a decent melody. As the song progresses, another pretty creative riff come in followed by some good leads. Children of Bodom announced that after their LIVE show in Helsinki on December 15, 2019, the band will disband. In the meantime, guitarists Alexi Laiho and Daniel Freyburg will be announcing their future plans at a later date. I just found out this news. I have no specific reaction to it other than the phrase “nothing lasts forever” especially applies to the career of any band.

Strongest Songs on Halo in Blood

  • Waste of Skin
  • Damaged Beyond Repair
  • All Twisted
  • One Bottle and a Knee Deep

"Waste of Skin"

© 2019 Ara Vahanian

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