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Review: Ajattara - Kalmanto

Label: Spikefarm Records
Year released: 2007
Duration: 36:48
Tracks: 9
Genre: Doom/Black

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: March 5, 2008
Reviewed by: Pagan Shadow
Readers Rating

Rated 4/5 (80%) (4 Votes)

Rarely do I receive a promo from Spinefarm and this one came in with no information, so a bit of research was necessary. The name Ajattara did sound familiar though...

This Finnish act counts on board five members and, according to what I saw on the label's site, they are a bunch of strange creatures, thus perhaps that's the reason I came across them, looking for creativity and originality in music. The first thing that struck me was the powerful sound production. Pounding drums, heavy/beefed up down-tuned guitar work and loud bass form the basic wall of sound. This formula is used from beginning to end, which is to a certain degree redundant, but those Finns actually have more secrets hidden in their sleeves. The vocals are mostly of the harsh/raspy style, but anything from scream to chant, wicked voices to male and female having sex could be heard. Discrete keyboards are woven into their song structure, always welcome for their nice atmospheric effect. In this case, I would describe their contribution as bringing a spooky/horror and haunted feel into the music, a thing I personally enjoy quite a lot. Now things are getting interesting isn't it? A bit of an Oriental flavor are felt on a couple places like on "Turhunden Takiia". The music on this release reach its best moments when a slow/doom mode is present, where it turns into something crushingly good. Tracks like ; "Il Kitie", "Madot" and the title track are just examples of this. Speaking of "Kalmanto", this is where the music takes an avant-gardist direction. A mixture of funny vocals, clean chant and tremolo picking makes this composition a crazier and different beast.

Ajattara, a strange Finnish act to discover.

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