This week’s featured artist is Alexi Laiho, who sadly passed away last week at the age of 41. Born April 8th 1979, he was a Finnish guitarist, composer, and vocalist, best known as the lead guitarist, lead vocalist and founding member of the melodic death metal band Children of Bodom. 

Children of Bodom formed in 1993 as “Inearthed” and over their career released ten studio albums, two live albums, two EPs, two compilation albums, and one DVD before  disbanding in 2019. The band has been described usually as melodic death metal and power metal, combining the two genres together. Critics and fans have labeled them as melodic death metal, thrash metal, symphonic black metal, and neoclassical metal. 

Laiho started playing violin at the age of seven and guitar at the age of 11. His first guitar was a Tokai brand Stratocaster model. During his career he used Marshall amps as well as Ibanez and Jackson, and had an ESP signature guitar line based on the Jackson Randy Rhoads. He frequently used drop tunings such as D standard, Drop C, C# standard, and drop B. 

Laiho received widespread acclaim for his guitar work. In 2004 he was ranked #96 out of 100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time by Guitar World. Guitar World magazine has also ranked him as one of the 50 fastest guitarists in the world. In addition, Roadrunner Records ranked Laiho at #41 out of 50 of The Greatest Metal Frontmen of All Time. Furthermore, Total Guitar conducted a public voting poll to determine the greatest metal guitarist of all time; Laiho was voted #1 out of 20 metal guitarists, with over 20% of the vote.

Check below for a tab and live video of Children of Bodom’s song Are You Dead Yet. We thank Alexi Laiho for his contributions to music, and may he rest in peace.


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