BODOM AFTER MIDNIGHT
The blood in most musicians’ veins would curdle if they all of a sudden learned that the perpetually globe-trotting team they have recorded ten albums with is about to implode. This was the fate staring Alexi Laiho straight in the face at a band meeting early last year.
As the assembly was completed, the attendees had reached a unanimous decision: The group known as Children Of Bodom would cease to exist after a concert at the Helsinki Ice Hall in December 2019. The shutdown process went as planned and the members parted as friends. End of a story that had begun in 1993.
The situation was a new kind of challenge. What went through the mind of the guitarist, songwriter and bandleader who had been continually chosen as the best metal guitarist in the world by the readers’ and experts’ polls of various music magazines and websites? Laiho brushed the dust off his shoulders and revved up the engines. A new line-up or death!
Luckily, he wasn’t alone. Guitarist Daniel Freyberg crawled through the wreckage to join Laiho in his quest. Committing to a hard-working team was never a problem for him either. But two guitar players do not a group make. It was time to start thinking about who could handle the drums, bass and keyboards. There were many options to choose from. But as Laiho had already witnessed people exit less than elegantly, he wanted to get just the right cohorts.
High-level musicianship, a cool stage presence and a fitting personality were the factors put under the microscope. Finally, the pieces to complete the puzzle were found. And the name for the new line-up? It had been right under Alexi’s nose all along. The drummer will be Waltteri Väyrynen who has been a member of Paradise Lost since 2015 whereas bass duties are handled by Mitja Toivanen a.k.a. Middy Cruz of Santa Cruz fame. As a touring keyboardist, the quartet is joined by Lauri Salomaa.