Album review: Blind Channel – Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous

Finnish ‘violent pop’ collective Blind Channel give us a high-sheen look inside the Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous.

Album review: Blind Channel – Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous
Sam Law

The Eurovision Song Contest 2021 was a hell of a night for rising rock talent, wasn’t it? We’ve already seen Italian winners Måneskin go on to globe-straddling success, but now Finland’s Blind Channel – who finished sixth on the night – have returned to stake their claim for stardom outside the uber-camp confines of that oddball competition. Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous may actually be the Oulu sextet’s fourth album, but it feels custom-tooled for breakout success.

There’s no better place to start than Dark Side: the song with which they represented their country. A blunt, high-sheen, attitude-heavy hip-hop-rock nugget, it feels oddly reminiscent of Los Angeles meatheads Hollywood Undead – albeit without their toxic machismo. Full of gargantuan hooks, pounding synths and expensive production, cynics wouldn’t be far off the mark to call it ‘rock for people who don’t really listen to rock music’, and it’s got none of the spiky, anarchic fun of, say, past Finnish Eurovision winners Lordi, but it’s no less effective for that.

The same compliments and criticisms can be applied throughout. Sultry pop-rock opener Opinions echoes latter-day Bring Me The Horizon, even if it doesn’t quite pack the invention of Oli Sykes and Jordan Fish. Don’t Fix Me reverberates with wiry pop-punk energy. Bad Idea luxuriates in its darkly shimmering soundscape. Balboa packs as much crowd-pleasing punch as its title deserves.

Those who like anything really sick or dangerous in their music won’t find much to sink their teeth into, sure, but if you’re still listening by the time the polished post-hardcore of Glory For The Greedy bursts into arms-aloft closer Thank You For The Pain, chances are you’ll be having as much fun as Graham Norton on ‘Gay Christmas’.

Verdict: 3/5

For fans of: Bring Me The Horizon, Hollywood Undead, Linkin Park

Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous is released on July 8 via Century Media

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