What to Do Tonight: Finntroll

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In times of strife, many look to the old ways for guidance and solace. Apparently Helsinki septet Finntroll dream of the days when Finnish trolls slaughtered Swedish Christian priests. While that may sound harsh, even for an ancient folk tale, keep in mind that the country’s folklore includes a tale of a pious man pimping his virgin daughters to a mob. Ironically enough, knowing some Swedish is necessary to figure out the meaning of Finntroll’s songs without resorting to Ye Olde Internet. But for most fans, it isn’t about the lyrics; it’s about goofy folk-metal. Many of Finntroll’s songs are laced with whimsical keyboard melodies, often set to a humppa (basically a Finish polka), sometimes evoking extreme Scandinavian metal, other times recalling sloppy and bar-ready Celtic punk. Although the folk-metal subgenre came into prominence only a couple of years ago, Finntroll have been dancing their morbid jig since 1997. Since then, they’ve released five albums and a pair of EPs of varying quality and styles. On this year’s Nifelvind, the band orchestrates its songs more purposefully. Still, there are some songs — like “Under Bergets Rot” — that generate much chuckling. The blackened production of 1998’s Rivfader and the masterful ambient folk of 2003’s Visor Om Slutet may be gone, but Finntroll sound tighter than ever before. They play Peabody’s (2045 E21st St., 216.776.9999), with Moonsorrow and Swallow the Sun kicking things off at 6:30 p.m. Tickets: $20 advance, $23 day of show. — Nick DeMarino

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