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HIM, ‘Tears on Tape’ – Album Review

Razor & Tie

Finnish love metalers HIM are back with their brand new album ‘Tears on Tape,’ the follow-up to 2010’s ‘Screamworks: Love in Theory and Practice.’

The new disc begins with an eerie instrumental snippet titled ‘Unleash the Red.’ The album also includes three other musical intermissions containing ambient sounds in songs such as ‘Trapped in Autumn,’ ‘Lucifer’s Chorale’ and their album ending ‘Kiss the Void.’

In between, there are some strong tracks that exemplify HIM’s dark yet poetic sound. ‘Hearts at War’ is one of these tracks where heavy riffs, dreamy keyboards, captive percussion pair perfectly with frontman Ville Valo’s warm vocals.

‘No Love’ may remind some fans of a ‘Razorblade Romance’ vibe, as Valo belts out “Forever and Ever!” which leads into punchy riffs not to mention an infectious chorus: “There’s no love / No love will be enough for what I’m feeling / No love / No love will be the end / Of this dreaming of you.”

Halfway through ‘No Love’ there’s a poignant breakdown with dreamy riffs and keyboards where HIM’s poetry comes to life, as Valo croons, “We’re the stars / In the drawing of the flame / Making love to the rain.”

On ‘W.L.S.T.D.,’ also known as “When Love Starts to Die,” Valo shows off the deep, groggy, brooding vocals that HIM fans know and love. The contagion of the chorus might burrow itself deep in your brain as he utters, “When love starts to die / It begins with a kiss / Violently soothing and warm / When love starts to die / When love starts to die / So do I / So do I.

Valo will delight fans with his infamous falsetto in songs such as ‘Into the Night’ and ‘Love Without Tears,’ as well as the soothing and soft vocals in ‘I Will Be the End of You.’

Meanwhile, cuts such as ‘All Lips Go Blue,’ ’Drawn & Quartered’ and the title track ‘Tears on Tape’ might appeal to the MTV generation of HIM fans with their radio-friendly appeal.

While ‘Tears on Tape’ is a solid effort, it’s not exactly a standout album in the band’s discography. Nonetheless, there are a number of tunes on the disc that HIM fans both old and new will certainly appreciate.

Next: Ville Valo Talks New Album + More

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