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Tears on Tape


Ville Hermanni Valo — lead vocals, acoustic guitar

Mikko "Linde" Lindström — lead guitar, acoustic guitar

Mikko "Migé" Paananen — bass guitar, contrabass, backing vocals

Mika "Gas Lipstick" Karppinen — drums, percussion

Janne "Burton" Puurtinen — keyboards, piano, backing vocals


HIM is a Finnish rock band from Helsinki. They formed in 1991 by vocalist Ville Valo, guitarist Mikko "Linde" Lindström, and bassist Mikko "Migé" Paananen. They began their career named “His Infernal Majesty” and released two demos and an EP under that name. The EP was released in 1996 only in Finland with only 1000 copies being produced. The band released their first full-length album in 1997 and featured a couple of covers. In 1999 the band released their second album Razorblade Romance. In 2002 the album was then released in the US; however that first album was released under HER as another band had the name rights in the US. Back in 2001 the band released their third album which again peaked #1 in Finland and #2 in Germany. 2003 seen their next release Love Metal. This was the first release that didn’t feature front man Valo, but instead it featured a gold heartagram, the band’s well-known logo. A compilation album was released in ‘04 and then their fifth studio album Dark Light, which spawned two major hits. A couple more compilations were released in ‘06 and ‘07. The later seen their sixth album hit stores. Venus Doom did well internationally while hitting the soundtrack for “Transformers”. 2010 seen another album being released and the newest album surfaced in 2013. Tears on Tape features 13 tracks which spread 41 minutes. They get the album going with “I Unleash the Red”. The track is just an intro tune with just sounds. “All Lips Go Blue” really gets the album with a traditional tune. The track offers up a steady beat with and clear vocals. The vocals do get a little whiney sounding, but the bulk of the track is descent. The little solo section is dramatic and catches you ears. It’s a smooth tune that sounds pretty good. “Love Without Tears” follows the same style as the last tune. The slow and steady music is blended with soft spoken vocals that open up their heart and give up some emotional lyrics. You can really lose yourself in the track and I think it will strike a nerve with many people. “I Will Be The End Of You” opens up with a solid intro that gets you to come closer to it. Once drawn in the vocals take over and glide along with ease. You will be singing right along in no time. The music sounds solid as well. The track does seem to be set back a bit more than the other tunes. “Tears On Tape” has a huge theatrical sound to it. The vocals are smooth and bone chilling, while the tunes behind them skate along with ease. It’s a soothing sounding song. “Into The Night” hits some high notes vocally while the music stays true to the rest of the album. It’s another laid back song that lets the lyrics do the talking. “Hearts At War” adds some energy with a cool intro that sees the guitars get a little funky. They also show up from time to time throughout the tune. It’s another track that I think fans will like. There are several extra things floating around the track and it’s easy to get into. “Trapped In Autumn” is just a short minute and a half tune that only provides instrument play. “No Love” turns up the tempo some and the track moves at a nice pace. The guitars and drums both get things moving really for the first time. It really gets the album going and it’s a great change of pace from the rest of the release. “Drawn & Quartered” slows the album back down with another tune that just glides along by the emotion of the vocals. It sounds elegant with the chimes and keys mixed with the guitars and drums. It really doesn’t offer up much in the energy or intensity departments, but emotionally it is jam packed. “Lucifer’s Chorale” is another short track that really doesn’t provide anything except a bridge to the next offer “W.L.S.T.D.” The track is slow and eerie, but grabs your attention and holds it tight. The creepiness of the track will captivate you in a fabulous way. I absolutely love how the song turns out and its by far one of the most intriguing tunes on the album. “Kiss The Void” wraps up the album with another instrumental tune. Overall the album is okay. You can sense a direction the release was going towards and they really stick to it. I feel that they did need some more variety on the release to spice it up. The vocals are really solid, but the lack of changes does start to bore you in the middle. Music it is the same story. It is unique in some aspects, but the lack of tempo and variation hurts it some. There are a few tracks that I really like and the rest of them I think are something that can be played in the background without begin skipped. I just would like to have seen more variety.


Rating: 7 out of 10

Tracks to Watch:

Hearts At War and W.L.S.T.D


Track List:

  1. I Unleash the Red
  2. All Lips Go Blue
  3. Love Without Tears
  4. I Will Be The End Of You
  5. Tears On Tape
  6. Into The Night
  7. Hearts At War
  8. Trapped In Autumn
  9. No Love
  10. Drawn & Quartered
  11. Lucifer’s Chorale
  12. W.L.S.T.D
  13. Kiss The Void

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