Kalmah is a melodic death metal band from Oulu,Finland that formed in 1998. In less than a year after its formation, Kalmah was signed by Spinefarm Records. The word "kalmah" is Karelian and could be translated as "to the grave" or "to the death."
In 1991, Pekka Kokko and Petri Sankala founded the metal band Ancestor. After Ancestor had recorded two demos, Antti Kokko joined the band as lead guitarist. In 1998, after five demos, Ancestor disbanded. Later in the same year, Kalmah formed. The new band consisted of Pekka Kokko performing vocals and guitar, Antti Kokko on lead guitar, Pasi Hiltula on keyboards, Altti Veteläinen on bass, and Petri Sankala on drums.
Kalmah began to write songs for a promotional CD entitled Svieri Obraza. With this demo, they acquired a recording contract with Spinefarm Records and headed to Tico-Tico Studios to record their debut album, Swamplord.
By November 2001, they returned to Tico-Tico Studios to record their second studio album, They Will Return. By this time, Veteläinen and Sankala were replaced by Timo Lehtinen on bass and Janne Kusmin on drums, respectively. In 2002, Kalmah played shows in Finland and at Wacken Open Air. In February 2003, they recorded their third studio album, Swampsong. In 2004, keyboardist Pasi Hiltula left and was replaced by Marco Sneck. The band released The Black Waltz in 2006 and For the Revolution in 2008. Kalmah toured in Canada and Finland to promote the latter album.
Kalmah's sixth studio album was released in Japan on February 24, 2010, Canada on March 2, Europe on March 3, and North America on April 6.
Recording and mixing took place from May to August at Tico-Tico Studios in Finland, and mastering for the disc took place at the Cutting Room in Sweden.
The track "Bullets Are Blind" was released in December 2009 on a 2-CD collection included with the 35th anniversary issue of Soundi magazine.
In March 2010, 12 Gauge became the first Kalmah album to be released on vinyl. The album was mastered for vinyl by Joona Lukala, Noise for Fiction, and released by Svart Records in a limited run of 500 copies.
In 2012, Kalmah finished filming a new music video for their upcoming album, due to be released in 2013. The band have kept fans up to date with their process via social networking website Facebook by uploading different photos, as well as a short behind the scenes video from the day of filming their video. They also announced that they currently have 6 songs finished, and they plan to enter the studio in January 2013.
The artwork for their seventh studio album will be created by artist Juha Vuorma, the man also behind the art of Kalmahs first 3 albums.
In April 2013, it was announced that the band will release their seventh studio album, Seventh Swamphony, on June 17.
The band's musical style is primarily classified as melodic death metal with their sound including strong influences of power metal, thrash metal and black metal. Musically, the band has been compared to fellow Finnish metal acts Children of Bodom, Norther and Wintersun.
Media related to Kalmah at Wikimedia Commons