Flesh & Blood (Poison album)

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Flesh & Blood
Poison-Flesh & Blood.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 21, 1990
Recorded1989 - 1990
StudioLittle Mountain Sound Studios, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
GenreGlam metal, hard rock
LabelEnigma, Capitol
ProducerBruce Fairbairn, Mike Fraser
Poison chronology
Open Up and Say... Ahh!
Flesh & Blood
Swallow This Live
Alternative cover
Original banned blood version
Original banned blood version
Singles from Flesh & Blood
  1. "Unskinny Bop"
    Released: June 27, 1990
  2. "Something to Believe In"
    Released: September 4, 1990
  3. "Ride the Wind"
    Released: January 21, 1991
  4. "Life Goes On"
    Released: April 21, 1991
  5. "(Flesh & Blood) Sacrifice"
    Released: July 1991
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3.5/5 stars [1]
Entertainment WeeklyB− [2]
Rolling Stone2/5 stars [3]

Flesh & Blood is the third studio album by American glam metal band Poison, released in 1990 through the Enigma label of Capitol Records. The album peaked at #2 on the Billboard charts[4] and it sold over 7.2 million copies worldwide.[citation needed]

The album spawned two top 10 singles: "Unskinny Bop" and "Something to Believe In", as well as three other hit singles: "Ride The Wind", "Life Goes On", and "(Flesh & Blood) Sacrifice".[5]

Flesh & Blood was certified Platinum in 1990 and Triple Platinum in 1991 by the RIAA.[6] It has also been certified by CAN 4x platinum and by BPI gold.

Production and marketing[edit]

The album was recorded and mixed at Little Mountain Sound Studios, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, with Canadian producer Bruce Fairbairn and mixer Mike Fraser.

The front cover of the album featured the Poison logo and album title as a tattoo on Rikki Rockett's arm. The cover was originally planned to have a slightly different version of the tattoo cover that featured the tattoo after being freshly inked. This showed the skin as red and inflamed with dripping ink or blood. This cover was pulled though and instead a cleaned up tattoo was shown. The original cover was released for the initial pressing in Japan but was subsequently removed from all later pressings (including those in Japan). The record’s marketing reflected the end of the more extreme elements in Poison’s "glam" image, including its excessive make-up and teased, girlish hair (see Look What the Cat Dragged In), featuring a look similar to Guns N' Roses.


Parts of the album reflected a darker, more serious side to the band, touching themes such as hard times and overcoming them ("Valley of Lost Souls", "Life Loves A Tragedy", "Come Hell Or High Water"), missing loved ones ("Life Goes On"), long-term relationships ("Don’t Give Up an Inch", "Ball and Chain"), and disillusionment ("Something to Believe In"). The fun side of the band remained intact, however, in tracks dealing with sex ("(Flesh & Blood) Sacrifice", "Unskinny Bop"), exhilaration from music or motorbikes ("Let It Play", "Ride the Wind"), and tongue-in-cheek poverty ("Poor Boy Blues").

The meaning of "Unskinny Bop", one of the band's most popular songs, has always been shrouded in obscurity. DeVille later confessed that the phrase "unskinny bop" has no particular meaning. He invented it as a temporary measure while writing the song, before vocalist Bret Michaels had begun working on the lyrics. The phrase was used on the basis that it was phonetically suited to the music. The song was later played to producer Fairbairn, who stated that although he did not know what an "unskinny bop" was, the phrase was perfect.[7]


Flesh & Blood was voted Best Album in Circus magazine's 1990 Readers' Poll, while "Something to Believe In" was voted Best Single.[8]

The album was connected to three Metal Edge Readers' Choice Awards in 1990, when the magazine's readers voted it for Album of the Year and "Something to Believe In" for Song of the Year and Best Video.[9]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written & arranged by Poison.

  1. "Strange Days of Uncle Jack" - 1:40
  2. "Valley of Lost Souls" - 3:58
  3. "(Flesh & Blood) Sacrifice" - 4:40
  4. "Swampjuice (Soul-O)" - 1:25
  5. "Unskinny Bop" - 3:47
  6. "Let It Play" - 4:21
  7. "Life Goes On" - 4:47
  8. "Come Hell or High Water" - 5:01
  9. "Ride the Wind" - 3:50
  10. "Don't Give Up an Inch" - 3:43
  11. "Something to Believe In" - 5:28
  12. "Ball and Chain" - 4:22
  13. "Life Loves a Tragedy" - 5:14
  14. "Poor Boy Blues" - 5:19

Bonus tracks on the 20th anniversary remaster:

  1. "Something to Believe In" (acoustic with new lyrics) - 5:59
  2. "God Save the Queen" (Instrumental) (Sex Pistols cover) 2:47

NOTE: The 2006 reissue contains a mastering error, as the last few seconds of "Poor Boy Blues" are missing from this version.

Video album[edit]

Flesh, Blood, & Videotape is the second video compilation released by Poison, featuring the music videos from Flesh & Blood.

  1. "Let It Play" (Montage clip)
  2. "Unskinny Bop"
  3. "Ride the Wind"
  4. "Poor Boy Blues" (Montage clip)
  5. "Something to Believe In"
  6. "Life Goes On"
  7. "(Flesh & Blood) Sacrifice" (Uncensored version)





  1. ^ Flesh & Blood at AllMusic
  2. ^ Entertainment Weekly review
  3. ^ Rolling Stone review
  4. ^ "Allmusic (Poison charts and awards) Billboard albums".
  5. ^ "Allmusic (Poison charts and awards) Billboard singles".
  6. ^ "RIAA Gold & Platinum". Archived from the original on 2015-09-24. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)Retrieved 2010.
  7. ^ [1] Harper C, "In Samantha 7 Heaven: An Interview with C.C. DeVille of Samantha 7" Ink 19, Retrieved October 18, 2005.
  8. ^ Circus, February 28, 1991
  9. ^ Metal Edge, May 1991