December 4, 2021

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That Time Children of Bodom Covered Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’


Children of Bodom have one of the more unique collections of cover songs in metal. It was always a chance for the group to let loose and just have some fun with some arena-built songs and, sometimes, those covers weren’t even of rock or metal songs. And then there’s that one time at the Wacken Open Air festival in 2008 when they covered a snippet of “Umbrella,” the hit song by pop star Rihanna.

At the time, the band was touring in support of their sixth album, Blooddrunk. Late in the set at the long-running German festival, the band started loosely playing Rihanna’s hit, which was released in that same year. With the keyboard melody and drum beat going, Alexi Laiho laughed, “This is so fucked up,” before singing the song’s lyrics, filtered through his gritty banshee wail.

The crowd was supportive of the moment, clapping along to the beat before Laiho shut down the jam session. “You know what? I just realized that this is not a fucking Children of Bodom song, so I kind of fucked it up. Let’s try it one more time… not that fucking song! Something else — seriously!”

Keyboardist Janne Wirman then started to play the intro to Van Halen’s “Jump” instead, which was met with enthusiasm from the festival audience. Now, that part of the clip is a painful reminder that the world lost two of its guitar heroes within months — Eddie Van Halen died on Oct. 6 of last year and Laiho died some time at the end of December, though news of his passing broke early in 2021.

Watch the video below and, to see the proper songs Bodom actually played that night, view the set list (via setlist.fm) from the Wacken ’08 show further down the page.

Children of Bodom Cover Rihanna’s “Umbrella” at Wacken 2008

Children of Bodom, Wacken 2008 Set List

01. “Sixpounder”
02. “Hellhounds on My Trail”
03. “Silent Night, Bodom Night”
04. “Follow the Reaper”
05. “Living Dead Beat”
06. “In Your Face”
07. “Banned from Heaven”
08. “Needled 24/7”
09. “One Day You Will Cry”
10. “Mask of Sanity / Deadnight Warrior”
11. “Hate Me!”
12. “Angels Don’t Kill”
13. “Blooddrunk”

Encore:
14. “Hate Crew Deathroll”
15. “Downfall”

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