Released: 2006, Napalm Records
Editors Note. Metal-Rules.com was founded in 1995 as a forward thinking site. Our goal is, and always has been, to support Real Metal. The decision was made that very rarely do we ever go back and review an album from before 1995. Does the world really need another CD review of Master Of Puppets, Powerslave or Screaming For Vengeance? We don’t think so. We have always supported what is happening now.
Starting in January, 2014, as we head towards our 10,000th review and the 20th Anniversary of Metal-Rules.com, we are looking back and filling in a few gaps in the review database. We want to complete the post-1995 review catalogue of some of the bands that we have supported since 1995, when very few, if any website were supporting real Metal. It’s fun to go back and revisit some of these albums that we did not review when they were first released. Enjoy!
I feel that this was the first album that really brought Korpiklaani to a wider public awareness. Sure, TALES ALONG THIS ROAD was the bands third album already,(Fifth if you count the two albums they did as Shaman) but this is the album that broke them. It was this album/tour cycle that the band did the first North American Paganfest. This was the first album where they introduced their very recognizable (and now iconic) mascot, Tervaskanto. It was around this time that Napalm Records start to get better distribution in North America, this was the Korpiklaani album I actually got as one of those promo, cardboard wallet things. Lastly there is the song, ‘Happy Little Boozer’. This is arguably the bands most famous song, kicking off the album, and the closest thing the band has ever had to a hit. I’ve talked to people who know this song but know very little about Korpiklaani let alone the album, but a good song is a good song!
The ten-track album runs a decent 45 minutes and has a heavier sound than the past couple of albums. The speed and intensity are increased a bit as well. They did cut back to be sextet dropping one guitarist, back you can’t really tell. The band has had a pretty fluid line-up anyway. Halfway through the album is the bands signature song, ‘Korpiklaani’. Of course there are all the usual host of guests with extra violins, whistles, accordions, mouth harps, bagpipes and all those little extras that make this band so unique. The production is great and the vocals are infectious as are all the melodies. It is hard not to like this record, even for the few (rare) non-Metal friends I have, I’ve thrown this on and always got a smile.
The band really hit their stride with a fine blend of happy, fun, whirling drinking jigs and their original sound taken from sounds from their northern culture. TALES ALONG THIS ROAD stands as album from an energetic, optimistic band about to conquer foreign shores; which is exactly what they did.