My relationship with Children of Bodom up to this point can be summarised like so –
- Hatebreeder (1999) – Wow, yeah! Such a damn good album. I really like this band.
- Hate Crew Death Roll (2003) – The band just continue to get better!
- Are You Dead Yet? (2005) – Oh no. What happened here? It’s okay I suppose, but not really my thing.
- Halo of Blood (2013) – Not too bad, but not too good either.
And now we have Hexed. Yes, there are other albums too, in addition to the ones mentioned above, but you get the general idea.
Hexed contains 45 minutes of rocking melodeath, which consists of ten new tracks and, curiously, a reworking of an older song, (Knuckleduster). My verdict? It seems Children of Bodom have returned to the quality levels of the late 90s/early 00s. Yes, you read that right.
Prominent, expressive keyboards work wonders with the material. Songs that are catchy and memorable tear out from the music like bladed predators scything through the airwaves. Old school rock and metal elements are captured in the band’s electrifying songs, especially in the melodies used. Aggressive, energetic, and melodic, Hexed is full of good tunes and confident attitude.
I’m impressed. I’m very pleased to say that the band sound revitalised, despite how much of a cliché that probably comes across as. The album art suggested something along these lines when I first saw it, but the music firmly backs it up.
Hexed is Children of Bodom’s best album in years. I feel like I’ve rediscovered an old friend.