Label: Nuclear Blast Playing Time: 45 Min Release: 8th March 2019
The children of lake Bodom were quite silent in the past years. Their last album “I Worship Chaos” was released in 2015, so it is already four years old. On this album they did something that I did not expect from them: They successfully combined their fast and melodic stuff from their early days with the more rhythm-oriented style they have played since 2005.
“Hexed” tries to walk a similar line like its predecessor. I say “try” on purpose, because Hexed never reaches the quality of the previous album. More or less, the songs sound like a pale infusion of former deeds. I miss the great melodies, the hooklines and catchy choruses – actually everything that made Children Of Bodom one of the leading Metal bands in Northern Europe and beyond. Songs like ‚Under Grass and Clover‘, ‚Kick In A Spleen‘, ‚Platitudes And Barren Words’ or ‘Soon Departed’ show references to the old hits of the band. But in fact, they would belong among the weaker songs on albums like “Hatecrew Deathroll” and “Are You Dead Yet”. It is only the title track and the final ‘Knuckleduster’ that actually reach the COB standard. Most interestingly, the last song mentioned is not even a new track. In fact it was already released 15 years ago as a B side on the “Thrashed, Lost And Strung Out”-EP.
It hurts my soul to say something like this about a band that used to be one of the hottest bands in Heavy Metal history, a band that also used to be one of my most favorite ever: This one is not worthy for Children of Bodom! You can do much better, guys!