by Ana Krunic
VANCOUVER – Most North American fans were introduced to Children Of Bodom in 2003, when their album Hate Crew Deathroll was launched into the sphere of modern mainstream metal. “Needled 24/7” was the song that solidified the thrashy, melo-death sound you’d identify immediately with the band. But as with most European bands, they had been around for a bit longer than the rest of us had been privy to, releasing their first record Something Wild in 1997.
Children Of Bodom, named after the famous Lake Bodom murders which took place in the band’s home country of Finland during the 1960s, brings us their 20 Years Down and Dirty tour as a bit of a final reflection on their earliest material and their career in general. Bassist Henkka Seppala has been with the band since their debut release and has quite a bit of work to look back on.
“The fact that it’s been 20 years since the first album, it’s crazy in the most positive way. Of course at the same time it makes you feel really old,” Seppala laughs. “Especially when you feel like eternal teenagers.”
Throughout their career, Children Of Bodom have had a surprisingly solidified lineup, with only the rhythm guitarist having switched out a couple of times beginning with Alexander Kuoppala leaving in 2003. More recently the group parted ways with Kuoppala’s replacement, Roope Latvala, just before the recording process started for the band’s latest cut, 2015’s I Worship Chaos. Latvala was replaced by Daniel Freyberg.
“It’s always good for band dynamics, mentally, to have a new personality in the band. Somebody where, for him, everything is new. He hasn’t been touring as much as we have so it’s cool to see with fresh eyes some of the things you’ve been taking for granted all these years.”
On this upcoming tour, the band has decided to put together a setlist with a lot of songs they’ve never played live in North America, particularly tracks from their first record.
“We played it back in the day when it was our only album but as soon as we had new material we kind of moved on. It’ll be fun getting out some of the material we never usually play. It’s going to be the last tour that we play a lot of this stuff so it’s also going to be a little bit sad for us. Maybe some day we’ll do another retrospective.”
Seppala concludes: “We are very much looking forward to playing Vancouver and the Commodore Ballroom again, it’s always a good time and we always have such high expectations coming back to that lovely venue and that lovely city.”
Children of Bodom will be headlining the Commodore Ballroom (Vancouver) on November 8, MacEwan Hall (Calgary) on November 10 and the Ranch Roadhouse (Edmonton) on November 11.