Blind Channel, ‘EXIT EMOTIONS’ | The Album Story

Blind Channel are back with their huge new album ‘EXIT EMOTIONS’, out now via Century Media. Joel and Niko open up about the writing process behind their fifth record in our latest digital cover feature.

Plus, we have teamed up with the band to bring you this exclusive t-shirt design inspired by the track ‘Die Another Day’.

Delivered worldwide, it is only available at SHOP.ROCKSOUND.TV

Read Blind Channel, ‘Exit Emotions’ | The Album Story below:

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Up until 2023, Blind Channel were the underdogs of the alternative scene.

Hailing from Oulu – a darkened, unforgiving city in the north of Finland – the six-piece rose to prominence outside of their homeland after their performance at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest.

An appearance that led to them being branded as ‘The Backstreet Boys of the metal scene’ by doubters and genre elitists, when they unveiled their 2022 album – ‘Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous’ – they raised a swift middle finger to anyone refusing to take them seriously.

A record of defiant, attitude-heavy rock songs with gargantuan hooks, the band’s fourth album propelled them into the scene limelight. Suddenly finding themselves drinking beers with their musical heroes and heading out on the road with the likes of Slipknot, Electric Callboy and I Prevail – a decade on from their inception – the sextet knew that something special was unfolding.

Now standing on the brink of all their wildest dreams coming true, on their fifth studio album – ‘Exit Emotions’ – the Finnish metallers are dialling things up to eleven. Primed for global success, Blind Channel are here to prove that not only are they a part of this scene – they’re pioneering it.


In May 2022, Blind Channel were out on the road across Europe with Electric Callboy.

Between shows, the touring party had a much-needed day off in an area close to Berlin. Pulling their tour bus into a parking bay and heading out to explore the local sights, what was intended as a day of rest ended up becoming the catalyst for a new musical era marked by intensity, euphoria, and escapism.

“There was a rave going on next to our bus,” recalls vocalist Joel Hokka.

“All of this loud music was playing, there were red lights shining, and people were going crazy partying. They were all there to escape the realities of their daily lives, and we wanted to bring that feeling to metal music too.”

“There was a sense of danger, but also a sense of beauty,” vocalist Niko Moilanen adds.

“You see those flashing red exit signs all over the world, and it felt like all those people had gathered there to exit their emotions. That’s the feeling that we want to bring to people, and if your emotions are getting too heavy, we want to offer an escape. Whether you come to our shows or just listen to the album at home, this could be a way to exit those emotions for a while.”


Written and recorded between their basement studio in Helsinki and studio spaces in London, Berlin, and LA, ‘Exit Emotions’ was brought to life within tight pockets of free time amidst a packed-out touring schedule.

“Being busy all the time was a good thing because it stopped us thinking about what would happen if we failed. We just had to do it, and being under that much pressure made a diamond in this case,” Joel smiles.

Transitioning from songwriters to seasoned performers in the last two years over the course of more than 200 shows, ‘Exit Emotions’ is a collection of the band’s heaviest songs to date. Inspired by the live experience and fuelled by the energy of their crowds, whilst establishing their next step forward Blind Channel found themselves pondering a vital new question: ‘Sure, this is good… but how good will it sound when we’re playing it in a god damn arena?!’

“This is the first album that we approached from a live perspective,” Niko nods.

“Rather than releasing songs then working out how to pull them off live, that idea was constantly in our minds. This is an album that needs to be experienced, because it’s in those moments you’ll find the feeling that we had when we saw the retro lights, the nightclubs, and the exit signs. It’s more than just an album, it’s a whole experience.”

Packed full of huge riffs, arena-sized choruses, and euphoric singalongs, a three-week trip to LA to work with producer Johnny Andrews cemented the bold sonic direction of album five.

A musical maestro with plenty of experience creating huge American radio rock records – previously working with Motionless In White and Three Days Grace – from then on Blind Channel knew exactly where they were going.

“We wrote ‘Deadzone’, and that felt like the root of everything. We decided to build around that huge rock sound, and that song become a very special one for us,” Joel nods.

“There are people who say that we’re the boyband of the metal scene, so we wanted to challenge that. Whilst we have these super catchy choruses, we still have the screaming, the metal riffs, and the breakdowns. You can do both!”

Embracing the resurgence of nu-metal on ‘Happy Doomsday’ and raising a swift middle finger to high school bullies on ‘Not Your Bro’, as much as ‘Exit Emotions’ is a declaration of fearless evolution, it’s a nostalgic love letter to American pop culture of the early 2000s.

Growing up dreaming of having a music video on MTV before the channel become dominated by re-runs of reality TV, on album five Blind Channel are confidently breathing in the sonic inspiration of a landscape that has long inspired them.

“Most of the bands we listened to as kids were American, but before we wrote our fourth album, we had never been to the United States,” Niko nods.

“On this album, we wanted to take our American influences to the next level. If the fourth album felt like a shiny new car, this album needed to be a monster truck.”


A 35-minute ride that takes you away from your daily struggles and frustration, ‘Exit Emotions’ is a deeply personal record for the members of Blind Channel.

Vomiting their feelings and emotions into twelve defiant rock songs in the hopes that they can help others make it through their darkest of days, they’re on a mission to unite people in the same way their favourite bands did for them growing up.

“I was 16 when I heard ‘Iowa’ by Slipknot for the first time, and it was like entering into this world where you could mentally break stuff,” Joel recalls.

“It was a chance to let out all of the frustration and violence without doing anything physical, and that’s what I love about metal shows. You can go into the mosh pits, have a wall of death, and do crazy stuff to escape for a few hours.”

“In this modern world, humans need to escape the daily doom scrolling and obsession with social media,” he continues.

“For some people it can be through going to the gym, jogging, or filling their heads with alcohol, but for us it comes through offering up art that can help people. That’s our way to escape the daily struggle of this modern misery.”

Going from outsiders of their local music scene to one of Finland’s biggest rock exports in the space of just a few years, by now Blind Channel know that the best songs are often the ones that you can project your own life onto.

Offering up their stories to the world, whether they’re exploring the monsters in your head that try to drag you down (‘PHOBIA’) or reflecting on their recent experiences in the US (‘Wolves In California’), the six-piece aren’t here to rack up street cred with songs about partying, girls, and money – it’s all about honesty.

“Niko and I were both outcasts when we were teenagers, and that’s why we started this band,” Joel recalls.

“EDM was huge when we formed, and making music like that that would have been the easiest way to get girls, but we wanted to create music that could stand the test of time. We want to be able go back to the songs we wrote 10 years ago and know that it was all honest, and that we weren’t just following the clout. We’ll always follow our emotions.”


With ‘Lifestyle Of The Sick & Dangerous’ featuring no outside contributions, album five sees Blind Channel embracing the spirit of collaboration, working with songwriters and musicians across the globe to bring their bold vision to life.

Creating a demo in just two days, ‘FLATLINE’ was the first song written for the band’s latest era, a collaboration with German electronic songwriting duo BLYNE that solidified ‘Exit Emotion’s ethos of evolution.

“BLYNE introduced us to a type of music called phonk, which is kind of like 8-bit gaming music. That inspired us to take more sounds from outside the scene and mix it up with metal music. It’s super unique, and people will have never heard metal music like it before,” Joel explains.

“We’re huge fans of Bring Me The Horizon and Linkin Park, and what we love about those two bands is how they pioneer in music. They take things from the mainstream music scene and mix it up to create a new style of aggressive music. We realised that we want to that in our own way too.”

Writing a large chunk of the album’s songs in London with producer Dan Lancaster and RØRY – the latter providing guest vocals on powerful pop rock ballad ‘Die Another Day’ – labelmate Jason Aalon Butler also lent a hand on the band’s return to LA.

Joining the six-piece for a session in the hills to offer his personal perspective on the songs they were piecing together, the Fever 333 frontman ended up becoming an integral part of the album process.

“We met Jason a couple of times at festivals during the summer of 2023, and we’d been messaging about doing something together for a while. We even went to Fever 333’s house party in Inglewood, LA last year where he shouted us out in front of everyone from the industry!” Joel grins.

“When he came up to join us, we wrote ‘Wolves In California’ together in just two days, and we clicked super well. That song is one of our favourites from the album, and there’s even backing vocals on it from Jason which is super cool.”


With the visual identity for Blind Channel’s fourth album, ‘Lifestyles Of The Sick & Dangerous’, centred around the figure of a middle finger, the six-piece somehow had to come up with an even more badass idea for their heaviest album to date.

Spending every moment that he wasn’t playing bass in the studio tinkering on his computer trying to create the perfect graphic representation of the record, bassist Olli Matela defined the striking red and black colour scheme of the band’s latest era.

“Once we had this idea of the party, the red lights, and the exit signs, I began to think about what object would best describe that atmosphere,” Joel reflects.

“I came up with the idea of a ball with spikes, and we Googled it to find out that it’s called a morning star. It’s a weapon from the medieval times, and we handed that idea over to Olli and he created this beautiful cover where the ball is wrecked. The colours, the weapon, the darkness… I think it’s the perfect way to describe how this album feels in graphic form.”


Being in a band is rarely easy work, especially not when you’re trying to break through as an international rock band from a subarctic region of Finland.

Pushing themselves to the limit with everything they take on, some may say that the odds aren’t in their favour, but with ‘Exit Emotions’ – Blind Channel are ready for the challenge.

“In the past we’ve heard people say things like, ‘Blind Channel got lucky’. We’re not lucky, we’ve been unlucky most of the time in this band!” Niko laughs.

“It’s mostly hard work that has gotten us to where we are now, but there was one time when we got extremely lucky. That moment was over 10 years ago when all six of us ended up being in the same band as one another. Now, these guys are my brothers.”

Despite the humble nature of these six friends from northern Finland, there’s no doubt that over a decade on from their formation – Blind Chanel are on the verge of something huge.

Attracting the attention of some of the biggest names in the scene and taking their message of honesty and expression to all corners of the globe, as they prepare to launch into the most ambitious chapter of their career so far one thing’s for sure – they’re only getting started.

“Music has the ability to make me cry, jump, smile or laugh, and it’s a language that can speak to you no matter where you’re from or what your history is. That’s magical, but the truth is that we all have a limited amount of time on Earth to appreciate that,” Niko finishes.

“I don’t know if it’s smart, but we’re not using that time to stop and be happy for ourselves. We’re so focused on moving forward, and we’ll have time to be proud of ourselves when we retire. Right now, it’s just time to knuckle down, work around the clock, and see how big this can really go.”

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