REVIEW: The Blanko – Stimulation Paradise

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THE BLANKO is a Finnish alternative rock band formed in 2006. The three-piece from Lahti are known for their energetic live act, as proved to me by having seen one of their performances as a support act for Apocalyptica in 2015. This was my first and only time seeing the band but I look back to the gig with a lot of positivity as they really left a good impression on me back then. Since then the band has grown quite a bit and had a little bit of a break in between releases. Now the time finally has come for the band to release their third studio album "Stimulation Paradise", which was released on 26 April 2019. 

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The band flirts in between soft songs, and songs that are so high on energy they'll be stuck in your head for the next days. This was also obvious in the singles that they had put out before. Two of them high on energy, one of them soft and emotional. "Stimulation Paradise" starts off with "Slave to My Passion", one of those high on energy songs, that will definitely conjure a smile on your face. That's exactly the image that THE BLANKO had left in my mind after their concert in 2015, and that's exactly what I had in mind for this record. The following song "Soul to Soul" shows that more soft, and emotional side of the band. A different side of the coin, but not less successful. They continue with a similar style in "Sweet Explosion", after which "Electric Desire" follows, definitely one of the highlights of the album. With its intriguing riffs that sets the bar already pretty high in the start, its poppy electronic details and melodies weaved around the beautiful energetic and catchy chorus, the song is a really bombastic classic alternative rock song that potentially will introduce us to a strong mark in the career of the band because with singles such as “Addiction” and “Electric Desire”. These are trademark THE BLANKO songs, and boy do I love them! This is what makes the band for me one of the finest and most refreshing alternative rock acts of Finland. "Raven Mind" slows down the tempo again, but still is energetic enough to bridge the two singles. "Addiction" soon follows, and again blows me away as usual. I completely understand why this song was chosen as a first single, it's perhaps the strongest song on the album. The album ends with "Necessary Evil", a nod to seventies rock acts, but in a contemporary jacket. "Necessary Evil" lets the album end on a high note, and makes you immediately wanna hit replay altogether. Definitely a good track to end the album with. 

These tracks together, again, make another fine THE BLANKO release. Hard hitting drums, compelling riffs, powerful vocals, and groovy bass melodies. Often progressive, refreshing, including really nice soundscapes and a lot of power. While not all of the songs were as high on energy, all the tracks are very creative, offer a lot of versatility, and depth in them. The production of the album is truly outstanding, THE BLANKO has an edgy sound, which is still a tad organic, overall well-produced and beautifully balanced. This might just be one of the alternative rock releases of the year!

Tracklist

  1. Slave to My Passion
  2. Soul to Soul
  3. Sweet Explosion
  4. Electric Desire
  5. Raven Mind
  6. Addiction
  7. Song for You
  8. Eternity
  9. Necessary Evil

Lineup

Pauli Hauta-aho: Guitar & Vocals
Jakke Saarinen: Drums
Jykke Tikka: Bass

Links


https://www.theblanko.com
https://www.facebook.com/theblanko
https://www.instagram.com/theblankogram

 

 

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