A TORTURED SOUL – Kiss Of The Thorn

A TORTURED SOUL - Kiss Of The Thorn
  • 8/10
    A TORTURED SOUL - Kiss Of The Thorn - 8/10


Eyes Like Snow
Release date: September 28, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Not to be confused with the Electronic/Trance act of the same name, A Tortured Soul is a Heavy Metal band from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. The group released a 10-song demo album called Tomorrow’s Door in 2005 that managed to get them some good notices, and they return now with Kiss Of The Thorn, which came out in late 2007. Several songs that were originally on Tomorrow’s Door reappear on this new album.

If you look at the hard-to-decipher band logo on Kiss Of The Thorn‘s cover, you might get the impression that A Tortured Soul is some type of Black/Death Metal act. That wouldn’t be the case: A Tortured Soul, while having a dark and slightly-sinister tone to their sound and lyrics, are more of a Traditional Metal band, playing in the time-honored style of bands like Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, and Mercyful Fate.

Kiss Of The Thorn‘s 10 songs are a combination of solid Metal riffs and strong guitar work, heavy drums, and a slightly-evil and sinister mood combined with gloomy and dark lyrical content, which often deals with macabre subject matter and/or religion. While an enjoyable album to listen to, Kiss Of The Thorn isn’t a happy disc that you’d play to cheer yourself or someone else up … unless you were an axe-murderer or something.

The most notable aspect of A Tortured Soul’s sound are the vocals of Rick Black, who gets your attention right away and keeps it to the end of the album: he can pull off low-pitched gruff vocals, high-pitched stuff, and pretty much everything in-between with ease. Black has no trouble hitting the highs and staying there for a long time; this ability leads to some impressive wails, shrieks, and sustained high-pitched vocal passages that are worthy of Metal royalty like Rob Halford and King Diamond. There are even nods to Ozzy Osbourne; you’d swear that the Prince of Darkness himself was performing vocals on “Not Tonight,” at least until the near the end, where Black lets loose with bone-chilling wail and removes all doubt.

While Black is good, his bandmates are too: guitarists Stefan Bohl and Nate Gorenc see to it that each song is well-supplied with interesting riffs and solo parts, while the rhythm section of bassist Wes Tesch and drummer Eric Gnant do their part to keep everything chugging along as heavily as possible. There are no real weak spots in the line-up, and the songs A Tortured Soul have come up with should please the headbangers out there.

Kiss Of The Thorn is a solid album from A Tortured Soul, and is definitely worth checking out.


  • Gary McLean

    Gary was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based out of the small Ontario, Canada town of Sault Ste. Marie, right on the border of Michigan, USA. When it comes to Metal and Hard Rock, Gary likes quite a few different bands, from stalwarts like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, to newer, hard-hitting groups such as Primal Fear, Hammerfall, and Paragon. Other favorites include the likes of Nightwish, Running Wild, Therion, Accept, Stratovarius, Dream Evil, Helloween, Rammstein, Dirty Looks, Crimson Glory, Tristania, and Gamma Ray. He thinks AC/DC deserves a paragraph all their own though.

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