HIM sheds tear for the fans
Finnish rockers promote 'crowd-pleasing' album
Posted: October 9, 2013
Courtesy Photo: Jonas Brandt
Ville Valo, center, has been the frontman of HIM since 1991.
The Finnish rock band HIM is making their way through Europe on the Rock Allegiance Tour to promote their eighth studio album, Tears on Tape, and will play in Prague on Oct. 12 at Lucerna's fittingly ornate Velký sál. HIM originally stood for His Infernal Majesty, a name they used on their earliest demo tapes.
In an interview with Loudwire.com, HIM frontman and vocalist Ville Valo talked about the sound of the new album. "On a lot of our previous albums we had more mellow moments and songs and then more up tempo and hard rocking songs and this one felt kind of natural to incorporate both of those emotions," he said.
According to setlists for the current tour, fans can expect new songs from the Tears on Tape album, such as "All Lips Go Blue" and "Hearts at War," as well as older favorites like "Wicked Game" and "Right Here in My Arms."
Critics have had a lot to say about HIM's latest album. Dom Lawson from The Guardian says "Tears on Tape harks back to the incisive crowd-pleasing of 2003's Love Metal, wherein every song boasted an irresistible, radio-friendly chorus, but the riffs still left a bruise or two."
When: Oct. 12 at 8
Where: Velký sál, Lucerna
Tickets: 990 Kč
Revolvermag.com says Tears on Tape uses inspiration from other bands, pulling "lingering elements of Black Sabbath, Roy Orbison, Elvis, Paradise Lost, and the earlier incarnations of HIM themselves."
However, the magazine also adds that "Tears on Tape may leave the HIM diehard a bit baffled, disappointed, and curious as to the new direction the band seems to have taken - but the truth is that the typical HIM fashion is always to move forward, even it if leaves some fans behind."
It seems as though Valo would agree with this, as he explains that catering to every initial fan might be less important than making music about the band's own heroes and things that invoke passion. "How I see it is that they shed a few tears on tape in their day and the blood, sweat, and tears they shed on that tape gave us a reason to carry on and pursue our passion which is music. It's like an ode to music and an ode to our idols," he said.
HIM was formed in Helsinki back in 1991 and included vocalist Ville Valo, guitarist Mikko Lindström, and bassist Mikko Paananen. Today all three original members remain, with the addition of drummer Mika Karppinen and keyboardist Janne Puurtinen.
One bit of trivia is that the band for legal reasons couldn't use the name HIM in the US, and released the 2002 album Razorblade Romance under the name HER. The dispute was quickly settled, making the albums with the HER logo quite rare collectors' items.
Jenna Moller can be reached at