Poisonblack - Escapexstacy review
01. The Glow Of The Flames
02. Love Infernal
03. The State
04. All Else Is Hollow
05. In Lust
06. The Exciter
07. Lay Your Heart To Rest
08. With Her I Die
10. The Kiss Of Death
Following the success of Sentenced's last album The Cold White Light, the band is taking a well-earned break. Sentenced frontman Ville Laihiala however, has decided to hook up with some fellow Oulu [Finland] friends and continue his side project Poisonblack.
Having formed the band as far back as two years ago [Then known as Shadowlands], Ville decided to shift his focus from vocals and concentrate his attention on lead and rhythm guitars. Janne Kukkonen joins Ville on bass and Charon frontman Juha-Pekka Leppaluoto on vocals [Who supported Sentenced on their 'Crimson' tour]. Helping out in the studio as session musicians Tarmo Kanerva on drums [Who's worked with Sentenced in the past] Marco Sneck on keyboards and Janne Dahlgren on guitar.
After seven years with Sentenced, there's bound to be some comparisons found in Poisonblack's debut album 'Escapexstacy'. The opening number 'The Glow Of The Flames' certainly brings to mind that familiar Sentenced sound, but that would only be telling half the story. Juha-Pekka Leppaluoto's vocals add a distinctly gothic sound to the mix, which is a welcome change to what could have been a carbon copy of Sentenced proven winning formula. The feel of the album is dissimilar to H.I.M. or Entwine, but with an emphasis on guitars rather than keyboards.
'Love Infernal' is a potential single release, while the piano led 'The State' and 'With Her I Die' are depressing and morbid sounding in an uplifting way. Lyrically the band focuses on themes of lust, sex and various forms of tortured emotions, as evident in tracks like 'In Lust' and 'The Exciter'. The heavier 'Illusion/Delusion' is certainly one of the best tracks featured on the album with a great riff and a chorus worthy of Sentenced, and it also showcases Ville's efficiency on the guitar. The final track 'The Kiss Of Death' again turns up the guitars, and caps off what can only be seen as a fully functional group of talented musicians that can more than hold their own.
Time will tell of course, but I have a feeling that this is more than a mere side project, and there will be more Poisonblack releases in the future.
|Poisonblack's first album, Escapexstacy, is one of the staples of the (now unfortunately, but timely, fading) Suomi metal genre. It brings us a very professional but emotive approach, nice performing and a handful of great songs - let's dig in a little deeper into it.
Songs are very dark in mood and none of them could be labelled as a fast track; there are ten of them, all pretty short (some even under three minutes long) and simplistic in structure. Songwriting is pretty advanced and experienced; though at first listen I didn't like the first three tracks, everything fell into place later. The lyrics are very lust-driven and stereotypical, sometimes even cheeky (i.e. "Burn my fingers one by one, guide me down into the sun / Let me show you how I crave to make you come"), but Juha-Pekka Leppäluoto pulls them off perfectly well with his very deep, expressive and alluring voice. The ex-Charon frontman is hands down one of Finland's better vocalists, and it shows in songs such as "In Lust" and "Illusion/Delusion".
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