Manala is Korpiklaani's umpteenth album, it seems they release one a year. Can't say they aren't hard-working band as they are always churning out albums and touring. It shows, too. On Manala, we are hearing a more mature Korpiklaani. Not that they won't drink your non-Finnish asses under the table regardless, but it seems like they've softened around the edges a bit.
Manala still retains that signature, unforgettable Korpiklaani sound- the buzzsaw punk-inspired guitars, the bouncing bass lines, the interwoven melodies of fiddle and accordion, and Jonne's guttural, semi-growled vocals and singing choruses- mostly in Finnish too. You may not know what they are saying but you will remember the choruses and sing along anyway, and this is what makes Korpiklaani great.
The drums here have taken a way more metal direction over the years. Double kick is far more prominent than on past releases, and some of the music takes a darker, heavier turn as well. There are still a couple party anthems as well, but no songs I am aware of directly named after an alcoholic beverage. I rather like that because it was becoming very predictable of them. Don't tell me what to drink, guys, just make music that makes me want to drink and we're good.
While this still at times makes me want to dance the humppa around the bonfire, I still enjoy their faster, more uptempo songs more. This is an improvement over their last two releases, Ukon Wacka and Karkelo, their best since Korven Kuningas. And if you haven't seen Korpiklaani live you're missing one fuck-all hell of a good time.