Sunday, 12 August 2012

Review: Krypt Axeripper - Mechanical Witch : NWOFHM # 1 : Shubidubah - 90%

The weird album art!
"Oh no, the riders of death coming from the paradise! Lucifer!"

Directly from metal's heaven, what we have here is a really weird unit called Krypt Axeripper. It's yet another project of Jussi Lehtisalo (watch out for my future reviews of his stuff) and like his other bands, it's really damn good. I don't know what's in the water in Pori, probaby only booze, but everything I heard from this scene is so special and fucked up. I have to thank my Austrian friend Azmodes for the cd, as I'm quite obsessed about it these days. You know it's gonna be strange when you hit the play button, the first sound you're hearing is the unorthodox drum part indicating your short but rewarding ride. It's like spending a day in a Disney movie but on shrooms, in Finland and with drunk Russian studs making jokes while huffing jenk.

Jussi (known as Krypt in this project) plays everything except the drums (played by one of his co members of Circle, his most well known project, an experimental/prog rock band). Krypt Axeripper has a false back story as a cult band from the 80s and I'm totally buying this. The cd looks like a reedition of an old 7" inch and it's even written "Ektro Archives' on the disc itself, a very cool and funny gimmick if you ask me. The lyrics are pretty good, a shame they're not in the booklet, but they are quite understandable. Read this jewel from "Possessed (By Trees)": "screaming fire, screaming night, the kraken surrounds you". It's epic and fun, just like their music. The vocal lines are awesome, they sound like a wizard who's whispering magic formulas to kill legendary beasts, like this kraken. There's also some 'shubiduwah' lines that are gonna put a smile on your face, there's almost a surf rock influence haha. The vocals are clean, something quite different from Motorspandex's experimental harsh vocals (One of Jussi's other EP project, it's basically KA but even crazier, highly recommended as well). It's both very catchy and metal as fuck. Only a simple look at the song titles would convince you "Battle of the Axehammer" and "High Speed Thunder Forever Gone". It's over the top and it's great. Everything is forming a great iron rolling ball of catchiness and it's hitting everything on its route, by mistake or not.

This band is undeniably metal, but it's very poppy. Obviously, not like their compatriots Nightwish and the other candied music for grown up children produced by the metal warehouses. We have four quite short songs for a total of 10 minutes and it's NOT enough. I want more! I usually put the album on repeat, drink some beers and swing an imaginary sword towards my foes. It's basically over analysed traditional heavy metal, decorticated to his primal origin and injected with extra liquid weirdness. An exercise of style of some with massive orgasmic results. For a more traditional version of Krypt Axeripper, you can check out Tractor Pulling, they only have a single released, like the two aforementionned bands. Jussi is definitely a fan of starting many projects, he probably forgets about them before starting a new one. 

This EP, Mechanical Witch doesn't sound like any band I heard, it's mixing glam, heavy metal and experimental into something, new, something alive and worthwile. The leads and riffs are interesting and quite unique, they twist and turn and manage to make you lost control of yourself in their whirlwinds. The drummer is using the cymbals a lot and it created a very original and demented feel. Jussi is handling the bass, his usual instrument and unlike the music, it's not quite, more present bass lines would had been nice. It's not a technical album, but you can find this mechanical feel throughout their music, but at the same time, it's natural and really cohesive. Released in 2007, I don't have much hope for a sophomore EP or a LP by Krypt Axeripper. Let's just hope he'll focus his metal songwriting on Motorspandex and Arkhamin Kirjasto or release a new Pharoah Overlord album sounding like Out of Darkness. He has a knack for special metal, that's for sure.

If you're looking for something different but still within the heavy metal genre, you should listen to Krypt Axeripper, also check out all the bands on Ektro Records while we're on the subject. Embrace the Mechanical Witch, this wicked and amazing creation of an obscure musical mastermind, Jussi Lehtisalo. Get possessed by their trees, let them wrap your body in their sonic roots.

Tony's notes: NWOFHM is the New Wave of Finnish Heavy Metal by the way

No comments: