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Featuring former Sentenced frontman Ville Laihiala, Poisonblack are a Finnish goth metal band that emerged to mainstream success in the mid-2000s. The band was founded in 2000 by Laihiala (born June 13, 1973, in Oulu, Finland), who at the time was the lead vocalist of Sentenced, a chart-topping Finnish metal band. Laihiala had made his debut as the frontman of Sentenced on the band's fourth album, Down (1996). He sang on all five of the band's subsequent albums on Century Media Records, including the chart-toppers Crimson (2000), The Cold White Light (2002), and The Funeral Album (2005), plus the swan song CD/DVD live album Buried Alive (2006), a double-disc recording of the final Sentenced concert, which took place on October 1, 2005. Toward the end of his tenure with Sentenced, Laihiala founded Poisonblack as a side project in which he could focus on playing guitar. The band is comprised of Janne Markus (guitar), Antti Remes (bass), Tarmo Kanerva (drums), and Marco Sneck (keyboards), in addition to Laihiala. He made his album debut with Poisonblack in 2003 on Escapexstacy, on which Charon singer Juha-Pekka Leppäluoto is featured on lead vocals. The album was a minor hit at best, and Laihiala resumed activity in Sentenced after its release. However, after the breakup of Sentenced in 2005, Laihiala resurrected Poisonblack and sang lead vocals himself this time. The resulting album, Lust Stained Despair (2006), was a huge success, reaching number two on the Finnish albums chart and spawning the Top Five hit single "Rush." Third album A Dead Heavy Day (2008) couldn't rival the blockbuster success of Lust Stained Despair, but it was popular all the same, reaching the Top Ten and spawning the single "Bear the Cross." ~ Jason Birchmeier

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