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Ajattara - Kalmanto (CD)

by Yiannis Doukas at 26 November 2007, 10:37 AM

What is this AJATTARA? Well, she is an ancient evil goddess that used to spend her time in the woods, in accordance to the Finnish mythology. Except this, AJATTARA is a  - I would say close to black metal - band that honor their motherly language by singing such, with consequence everything sounding 'Greek' to me! Of course, this adds a lot to their personality and don't forget that the result has something exotic. One the other hand, the fact is that you have to keep in your mind the band leader's name is Ruoja, whom you my know more as Pasi Koskinen (yes, he was in AMORPHIS and in the very cool band TO SEPARATE THE FLESH FROM THE BONES. Add also that this is their fifth album, ( check the first one Itse that was released in 2001) despite some rumors for their split-up.
Some basic elements of their sound now are to speak, so you'll have a short idea of what is going on here. Imagine some extreme black metal vocals (with very extreme exaltations sometimes) and very few moments with clean melodic ones. Underneath some very very heavy guitars with SABBATH - ish, cut riffing, like MINISTRY, RAMMSTEIN and in general mid-tempo rhythms. Put also, above all these, a clever use of keyboards with cool ideas and some samples.
AJATTARA are making emulous efforts but somewhere the result is not so good. Let me explain. Kalmanto starts with two very good songs. Ilkitie has some parts of keyboards and vocals that are close to noise, making an extreme song with very good riff and refrain. Turhuuden Takila starts with a melody from middle - east and looks like a complete rhythm - elevating song. With both, the last works of DEATH SS came to memory. Madot also has an Arabian melody, a strange bass and very good keys, but it's not in the level of the previous two. Anyway, the album starts nice.
The problems start to appear in the fourth track that, despite its good clean vocals & refrain, it's not anything special. Things get worse in the following two tracks that look like just fillers. The continual use of this heaviness in guitars isn't accompanied by a structure or an inspired idea that can keep the listener's interest; so boredom has arrived.
Naimalaulu changes the whole situation with a violin part, nice guitars and something sick and horny smelling that is becoming bigger with some screams of women in orgasm in its end. Alttarilla Aamutahden is also good, not like the previous one, but the keys are a killer. Unfortunately the self-titled track destroys any good impression. It looks like the band wants desperately to do something unique and different with a disappointing result. Very disappointing, I would say.
Maybe the rating below is iniquitous for Kalmanto, but I believe if this was an EP with only the good songs in, things would be different.

3 Star Rating

Turhuuden Takila
Harhojen Virta
Alttarilla Aamutahden
Ruoja - Vocals, Guitars
Kalmos - Guitars
Tohtori Kuolio - Bass
Malakias IV - Drums
Raajat - Synth
Record Label: Spikefarm Records


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