Album Review: Korpiklaani – Rankarumpu (Nuclear Blast)

Finnish folk metallers Korpiklaani will release their new, and twelfth, studio album, ‘Rankarumpu’, on April 5th, 2024, via Nuclear Blast.

This deep into your career, with a folk metal sound is that is beyond familiar, can Korpiklaani really thrill in the same way they once did? That’s the big question surrounding this album, and to ensure the answer is a resounding yes, the group have looked to the past to revitalise their sound. A past based on hotter and more obviously infectious tempos, where being fun and wild was the key to making memorable Korpiklaani music.

Yet, this is no rerun of past glories, as the group add new layers of folk instrumentals, and continue to strive to be as fresh as possible. While it doesn’t always work, the album does resonate strongly overall, and long term Korpiklaani fans will come away feeling buoyed by an enthusiastic showcase of their dynamic soundscape.

So, what’s new? How about the prominent placement of a violin (from new permanent member Olli Vänskä) and some erratic intensity from Sami Perttula’s accordion! Elements that add rich layers to Rankarumpu, which as an overall package, finds Korpiklaani in a much more frenetic place. From the very start, things are fast and excitable, calling back to the earlier days of Korpiklaani where they had a ‘sort of’ punk mentality.

Does that mean it lacks in the melody department or that Korpiklaani aren’t willing to throw out some emotionally heavy moments? Of course not, and across twelve potent offerings, a wide array of what this band is capable of, is on display. Rooted in one particular area – the desire to be catchy and with the ability to deliver a lot of that. Even if it doesn’t always result in complete memorability. There are a few tracks that lack a little something, be it originality, a hook, strong melody, or strong party vibes.

Happily, these are few and far between, and the majority of the album will gee up the soul, and make you very glad that you’ve spent another 40+ minutes in the company of Korpiklaani.

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Korpiklaani – Rankarumpu Track Listing:

1. Kotomaa
2. Tapa sen kun kerkeet
3. Aita
4. Saunaan
5. Mettään
6. Kalmisto
7. Rankarumpu
8. No perkele
9. Viikatelintu
10. Nouse
11. Oraakkelit
12. Harhainen höyhen


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Korpiklaani - Rankarumpu (Nuclear Blast)
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