KORPIKLAANI – Jylhä (Nuclear Blast Records)

  Van Muylem    4 februari 2021

Here and now, KORPIKLAANI’s fearless journey continues on – and this time, the journey is powered by rather serious subject matter. Their eleventh full-length studio record "Jylhä" (which has no direct translation but can be described as majestic, or wild and rugged in a beautiful way) brings all the well-known and essential ingredients to the table: heavy-duty guitar riffing, rhythmic folk melodies and more.

I have seen them many times on stage and despite not speaking nor understanding any Finnish I really adored their shows. They love to party (but sometimes also trash a hotel room). Some of their music is on my private playlist and that says enough about how good they are.

"The album blasts off with belligerent track ‘Verikoira’, which was composed having JUDAS PRIEST's mighty ‘Painkiller’ in the back of our minds. One can also hear my vocal tribute to one and only Mr. Rob Halford ", reveals Jonne. Yup, I think we all needed to know that before even starting to review it. I must say this songs sounds different from what I’m used to hear from them, except for the chorus. It’s cool as it gives them a fresh touch. I like the high tempo and the screaming.

Niemi sounds more like a classic Korpiklaani track, but with more guitars and a fast tempo. Yet on this one I feel you can dance and party all night long and that is their strength! Leväluhta has a violin in the start and some reggae influences. It’s a real party track and will be a total blast on stage! I’m pretty sure this one will be loved as soon as we can see them on stage again! Mylly sounds soft and is my least loved track of the album, although I hear some melancholy in it (I adore melancholy). The tempo is a bit too low for me. Tuuleton starts like a ballad but the tempo goes up and down afterwards with some heavy guitars and hammering drums. Yet the folky touch keeps the lead. Sanaton Maa mixes their folky sound with guitars and drops a party animal behind the mic.

A note about the next one: Kiuru: “On the darker side, there are several murder songs - I wasn't really planning these rather untraditional lyrics, they just happened... One of these is Kiuru, and that story is inspired by a famous Finnish double homicide case, which took place in the small village of Tulilahti in 1959. In these lyrics, the character called Kiuru – Skylark in English – acts as eyewitness and a prophet, but at the same time, this creature also functions as an allegory of many things... All in all, I am really happy with the lyrics and all these new themes!" dixit Tuomas Keskimäki. Talking about the music: it’s a classic Korpiklaani track but without the let’s party feeling (and that’s logical if you just read what the lyrics are about).

Miero sounds softer, but has a drinking cloud in it. Pohja is a fast party track that reminds me of some older tracks they crafted. It’s a great track with lot’s of backings that gives it a clear party feel. More fun comes with Huelottomat. Anolan Aukeat is over before you notice it, somehow it has nothing special and sounds like a filler, but hey I blame it on my lack of knowledge of their language. Pidot gives us a banjo sound given by bass player Jack Gibson of thrash legends EXODUS. The song sounds cool and funny. Last track is Juuret: a smoking rock/folky one with a more party feeling towards the end.

Well, the album is not bad and it’s great to hear some new influences and new directions. Korpiklaani will however always stay a live band for me and I can’t wait to see them on stage once we are allowed again!

And this one will be available the 5th of february: