Warmen may have started out in 2000 as Children Of Bodom keyboardist Janne Warman's solo project with a bunch of hired guns helping him to put his musical inspiration to life. Their "Unknown Soldier" -debut (2000) was exactly that, but already on their second effort "Beyond Abilities" (2002) Warmen was already more like a real band.
After having a huge radio hit in their native Finland with their deranged version of the Rockwell song “Someone’s Watching Me”, taken from their previous album “Accept the Fact” (2005), Janne Warman’s Warmen are at it again.
On his fourth “solo” outing, curiously entitled “Japanese Hospitality”, the Children Of Bodom keyboard prodigy has put together another impressive and eclectic collection of songs, portraying the man’s diverse matrix of influences ranging from “Switcharoo’s” blingingly virtuosic instrumental metal that we’ve all come to recognize and appreciate already on Warmen’s previous albums, to chunky and pesky in-your-face groove metal attack, as displayed here on the track “High Heels on Cobblestone”. To further befuddle the listener, the group rounds out the effort with a scorching renditions of the Journey stadion rock anthem “Separate Ways” and Janet Jackson rock’n’roller “Black Cat”.
It’s a side project, yes, but it’s not just Janne Warman who shines here. In his usual manner Janne enlists an impressive array of friends to accompany his yet another adventure to the vasts of virtuosity. A guitar guru in his own right, Antti Warman complimets his big brother’s style like only a sibling can. The foundation of the baffling bedlam are built on the dynamic beats of Mirka Rantanen (Thunderstone) and Janne’s latest discovery, bass beast Jyri Helko from crackpot metallers For The Imperium.
Completing the cast of characters are the varying voices, whose résumé reads like the alphabet of Finnish melodic rock, featuring Stratovarius vocalist Timo Kotipelto, Children Of Bodom screamer Alexi Laiho, raspy rock voice of ex-Thunderstone Pasi Rantanen, the resonant, progressive approach of ex-Tunnelvision Marko Waara and finally, to give the album the much-needed feminine touch, long-time friend Jonna K., another fixed star in the Finnish rock astronomy.
With a lineup like this, Warmen are at liberty to veer and steer to a dozen directions, yet never lose their main focus, Janne’s knack for writing tunes that will rock your world!