Cover albums serve many purposes: They’re fun, they reveal some unlikely musical influences and, of course, they make for excellent mix tape filler. In the case of Skeletons in the Closet, Children of Bodom’s foray into the medium, there’s one more bonus—most of these songs have only appeared on rare B-sides, pricey deluxe editions or imports, so the 17-track opus serves as an excellent all-inclusive collection for those fans too honest (or inept) to track down the torrents individually.
But don’t let that flippant annotation take away from the tunes themselves. Truly, one of the most interesting things about Skeletons in the Closet is the range and diversity of the songs Bodom chose. Sure, Slayer’s “Silent Scream” and Sepultura’s “Mass Hypnosis” must’ve been no-brainers, but consider that they share space with unlikely hits by
Creedence Clearwater Revival (“Lookin’ Out My Back Door”), Kenny Rogers (“Just Dropped In”) and an unreleased version of a Pat Benatar staple (“Hell Is for Children”), and the dynamics become pretty stunning. For the most part, the arrangements stay true to COB’s patented screeching guitar style, replete with flourishing keyboards, and even
when the songs don’t necessarily work, they still kind of do (see: Trust’s “Antisocial”).
Still, considering how renowned COB are for doling out prolific covers, one would have hoped they’d thrown in a few more exclusive selections, as only four of the songs are wholly new. And though a sequel to Skeletons in the Closet is inevitable, let’s hope they don’t stray into Lady Gaga territory.
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Children Of Bodom, Skeletons in the Closet: (FONINT1764 / 602527131764 / C14) Available Now!
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