Cisco Poison

It's a Long Way to Heaven

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Though Joe Wood was best known as the lead singer and songwriter during T.S.O.L.'s metal phase, his next band sounded completely different. Cisco Poison did have a metal edge, but instead of mere speed and power, the band adopted a more measured approach. Wood and bandmates Johnny Minguez and Mike Rasmussen were an uncommonly good power trio that played hard mid-tempo rock with a bit of Southern rock flavor and a lot of acoustic touches. The songs are first-rate and topically diverse. Two standouts are "26 Forever," a bleak meditation on a friend dying of AIDS, and "Come Live With Me," a challenge to politicians to live in the ghetto for awhile and see if their policies change. The latter song aside, this isn't a particularly political album -- these songs view the world from street level rather than ranting about theories. It's a Long Way to Heaven was a fine album, and Cisco Poison a fine band -- it's a shame they didn't stay together.

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