There are some bands that make your day, bands you connect with through their music bringing you an escape, a release. I’ve developed a relationship like this with FLOWING TEARS, they’re a special band to me whom I am forever thankful and glad to have stumbled upon at the time of the release of their third album “Jade”.
That was a long time ago and now we’re at 2004, the year of the bands heaviest, most inspirational, most worked out and moving album so far. The band has triggered a new way of playing Gothic Metal, the potential is massive and most importantly, believable after you’ve taken a closer look at this Modern Gothic Metal paradise called “Razorbliss”.
Each song is like a small riddle that begs to be solved and seen through, you’ll definitely spend some time on figuring out the details of the songs; take a song like “Radium Angel”, the more you listen to it, the more it keeps on revealing sounds you missed on the previous listen. Creativity runs through every single song here, which is why the songs sounds so worked out and mature. “Believe”, which features a guest appearance from Dirk Thurisch of ANGEL DUST, is a very hard pumping track, could be the bands heaviest ever. The bands pretty versatile when composing, I’ll give you some examples: “Maladine” is an odd track that plays with oriental atmospheres, “Ballad Of A Lonely God” revisits the bands early Doom influences with its incredible slow tempo and despairing choirs, “Unspoken” is... well... an awesome song while “Snakes Of Grey” crosses into lighter, almost mainstream like atmospherical sounds.
Founder and guitarist Benjamin Buss really grows as a songwriter on this release, his melodies are irresistible and hooky, it’s interesting how his musicality has developed since “Jade”. Ben might run the one part of the show but the vocals of new vocal enchantress Helen Vogt really fight for the spotlight. This is the bands first album with Vogt replacing Stephanie Duchene (still miss your voice Steffi) as she decided to leave to concentrate on her education. The big question is undoubtedly if Helen is able to fill good ol’ Steffi’s shoes; she sounds very confident and I think she fits well into the band, she has a similar dark and seductive voice but also has some more edgy and powerful attributes. She’s also a hardcore fan of the band (and Metal music in general) which has ignited a unique chemistry between her and the rest of the band.
I may be a dedicated follower of this band but I honestly think “Razorbliss” is the future blueprint of Emotional Modern Rock music in terms of both songwriting and sound production. LACUNA COIL can tour and support “Comalies” all they want and enjoy the success for now, but I tell you they’re off the throne now that “Razorbliss” has landed. FLOWING TEARS have crafted an original and nearly unbeatable album, they’ve taken the role as leaders now and only time will tell who will play the follower. (Online April 13, 2004)