The mastermind behind Finlandís PLAN E is Jani Lehtosaari, who is known for his collaborations with IMPALED NAZARENE, among others. Donít be fooled, though, as PLAN E sounds nothing like IMPALED NAZARENE, or any other Metal youíve ever heard. No, itís not that this is some new and original and innovative type of MetalÖitís that it isnít Metal at all. Itís not really Avantgarde either Ė I classified it as such because thatís what the press-sheet says it is, but I donít see how anyone would call this Avantgarde unless theyíve never heard of Synth Pop before.
And thatís exactly what ďBest Kept SecretĒ is: Synth Pop. Itís dark, jazzy, loungy Synth Pop with lots of keyboards, atmospherics, samples and three guys playing bass. At times it sounds almost like NINE INCH NAILS, though it never really gets anywhere near even that heavy. Maybe it would be best to describe the sound here as a weird mix of NINE INCH NAILS with RADIOHEADís more experimental (re: techno) moments, with a singer totally different from either band. Jari Lehtosaariís vocals have a smooth and deep delivery, floating somewhere above the music and casting a dark and sinister shadow onto the otherwise potentially happy-sounding tunes. Heís got a nice voice which definitely adds a nice touch, making PLAN E an entity of its own.
DO NOT go into this expecting Metal as you will inevitably be disappointed. This album is being promoted as for fans of Nick Cave and JOY DIVISION. Keep that in mind before heading in to this one, or else you might be sorely surprised. If you keep that in mind and what Iíve written above sounds interesting, you might find PLAN E a refreshing change. (Online September 5, 2005)