Finntroll – Jaktens Tid – Review


Jaktens Tid (Century Media)
by Scott Hefflon

It was only a matter of time before someone realized “Hey, the ‘thrash beat’ is basically umpa-umpa polka, so why don’t we play fast, thrashy metal with accordions?” Accordions became keyboards playing an accordionish sound because, let’s face it, how many accordion-playing metalheads are you gonna find? Especially in Finland. And at this hour… Keyboards can also mimic the sound of various other instruments, and they’re a lot lighter to lug around. And it’s hard to look cool “jamming out” on an accordion. And they seem kinda difficult to play, don’t they? So keyboards were decided upon as the way to go, and everyone thought it was a good idea.

Simply put, black/folk metal has been getting further and further “out there,” mostly because the musicians are originally attracted to the style because you’re encouraged to create something completely new using traditional elements, and as long as you sound nothing like AC/DC when you’re finished, it’s all good. Also, if you come along this late in the game, really, how you gonna out-freak Emperor or Cradle of Filth? They’ve got a big lead, and they’re constantly striving to outdo themselves – as all artists must – so you might as well “blaze your own path” and tinker with sticks and whistles and sample dogs humping. Or wake up in the middle of the night and realize that thrash and Elfin mosh pits are the next new thing. Hell, it’s gotta be better’n that god-awful nü metal, right? So with the Lord of the Rings the new rage, it probably only makes sense that this umpa-umpa-woo-woo! silliness strikes now.

Oh, before “normal people” rush out and buy this (yeah, right), this is based in the context of underground metal, so that means that the singer snarls and slathers, though there is some “wha-oo-wha-ooahh” kinda Native American chant stuff in there. While song titles aren’t in English, song six could be in a Danny Elfman score. And 13, the outro, is a nice ambient dinner roll which leads to the bonus banjo’n’tuba (the new drum’n’bass?) “Rambla-lamba, mumble, mumble,” kinda like the Muppet travelin’ song, “Moving right along, dugga-dune dugga-dune.” For fans of The Haunted who think elves are kinda cool and can laugh along with their metal as they throw devil signs at all the people who look at them funny. And if you play this, that’ll be pretty much everyone.
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