Being a good-old Poisonblack fan, when i saw their show announcements for this summer of 2015 in Finland on their official Facebook page, I thought to myself this couldn’t be a better time to go there and catch them live for the first time ever and part of their announcement included a statement that this might be the last time till we see them live in a very long time made it all mandatory and enthusiastic for me to book my tickets for Finland. No one actually knew that they were splitting up the band but somehow from the vibe of that post or because of some instinct of mine whatever you call it told me that I just had to catch them this time around. As a music fan, you would do everything you can to catch a band that is so close to your heart after such an announcement. I really thank social media at times like these. It makes musicians and fans come together.
I caught Poisonblack in Helsinki, Virgin Oil Co. venue on August 15, 2015. It was a cozy venue right in the very center of the city. This was the second last live show of PB before the very last gig in Oulu on Aug. 21, 2015.
The opener band was Crimson Sun from Kotka, Finland. They are a modern melodic metal band with clean female vocals. I must say they sounded so much heavier and better live than their recorded tracks from their debut album “Towards the Sun” that just came out on Aug. 3, 2015.
However, I really say this in a good and complimentary way because I was absolutely delighted by their live performance and it got better with every next song they played. I like their sound very much with heavy riffs, great drums and keyboards. The band was good with their instruments and looked quite professional on stage. Unfortunately the vocals of Sini Seppälä couldn’t be heard very clearly but that might be either because of the sound system or me being in front of the stage on the first row, maybe back in the crowd her voice was heard more clearly. They played all the songs except for the track called “The Herald” from their debut album. It seems they have a nice music future for them in the Finnish metal scene.
It’s been 15 years since Poisonblack was founded by the ex-Sentenced singer Ville Laihiala with ups-and-downs with line-up changes; nevertheless, surely nothing but only great melodies and lyrics, awesome albums that speak to your ears and soul if you happen to like Sentenced in the past or any other gothic-themed rock bands from Finland. After Crimson Sun, the PB crew started to set the stage, Mr. Laihiala himself at some point came on the stage and gave us the fingers. That was nice! We immediately thought with my friend alongside of me who has seen them for the 13th time that it’s gonna be such a Poisonblack show alright! They came on the stage and opened the set with the uptempo “Home Is Where The Sty Is” and then only “Halfway Bar” came from the last album “Lyijy”.
The rest of the set was from the previous albums. It was pretty emotional for me when they started playing “Scars” for it having been such a road song all along on my trips. When “The State” started, I couldnt believe that I was there hearing it live since “Escapexstacy” has been my favorite album and on heavy rotation for years. “Love Infernal” was a crowd pleaser that you can feel the joy of the audience when the intro bass line by Antti Remes hit in. And of course all the up-tempo songs were there from the past albums equivalently. Of course I had my favorite PB songs that I wished they played like “Nail”, “The Darkest Lie” and “Pain Becomes Me” as such a fangirl that I am but I also know that it’s practically impossible to hear them in one gig.
The band did not want to announce that it is the end for them because they wanted to play as they were playing enjoyably before without any stress and drama and we could see that on the stage, it was like any other gig that they played in the past like the rock veterans they are. Laihiala spoke to the audience a lot during the song breaks and crowd enjoyed it, the energy was great. After the show, the band members came out to the bar to meet the fans which was a lovely gesture. Maybe at some point in the future, we will hear some projects from some PB members hopefully. This has been a great 15 years for us fans, there is nothing else other than thanking the band for giving us their music and memories that come along with it.