After two years, pioneers of gothic / doom metal, Paradise Lost, honored us with their arrival to Croatia by promoting their new album “Medusa”, which once again confirmed their high place on the metal scene after almost 30 years of existence.
It is a good thing that the stage was set on a Saturday and not such a good thing that the event took place in Boogaloo. The place has a history of bad sound, but we’ll get there a little bit later.
The event organization was fairly correct and the bands were delayed for about twenty minutes. The concert space has already been duly filled up for the start of the first band, Sinistro, which started at 20:30. This interesting Portuguese band, along with Patricia Andrade who sings in her native language, could be classified as a doom metal with post-metal and sludge variations. This band is something we don’t see very often.
The sound for the first band was quite solid, though the vocals became very vague. But that didn’t stop the singer from being in her zone, as well as the band itself. They were totally involved in their music. Patricia Andrade followed every beat with her body and climbed into trances during tough parts, as well as happy or melancholic feelings, depending on the part of the song. She has an impressive vocal range that can be heard even under unhealthy sound. There wasn’t much lightshow and it all seemed like an intimate play with the passages of madness. Although a little unconventional live band, they got a good reaction from the audience. And I must say that I’m not impressed with their album “Semente” from 2016, but they are totally another story live.
I can’t write the same for the next US band Pallbearer. Their albums sound pretty impressive as a doom metal with a lot of progressive elements, especially the last piece of “Hearless” album which was released this year. The instruments were solid, which is good for their songs that have a lot of slow parts that give the songs a lot of extra space so much that even bass shares are clearly heard. But the vocals almost didn’t exist, barely as echoed even when the three vocals were switched on. As one lady said: “More microphones than words”.
Their lead vocalist / guitarist talked more with the tune than with the audience, while the main word was led by their bassist. The most interesting thing is that everyone in the band had more contact with their 9 guitar pedals (yes, I counted) than with audience, which spoiled the overall impression. Although they have picked up good reactions from the audience, the band has remained fairly absent for some reason. It seems that they know how to play and simply break up with their instruments but apparently they have not been in their element that evening.
Straight at 22:30 started Paradise Lost, doom stars of the night and for a moment I had a deja-vu of their performance two years ago at Vintage Industrial Bar. They are very tuned and professional band. Greg Mackintosh, with a fresh Mohawk, was perfectly accurate and focused on his guitar parts that he simply killed. Aaron Aedy followed Greg on the second guitar and led the energetic part of the show. Steve Edmondson bass was bruised and additionally filled the music. Drums of new member Waltteri Väyrynnen are accurate in every stroke. But wait a minute, where the fuck was Nick Holmes? No one heard or understood him!!! This was the main problem that has cursed the whole event.
Although the vocal might have been set to loudest, it was still quite muddy, so we had difficulties in understanding Nick even between songs. The setlist was very mixed but pretty good. They started with “Gods of Ancient” from the new album, which totally devour old bands like Black Sabbath and Pentagram, moving to more energetic stuff like “Remembrance” from their cult album “Icon”.
Their discography is quite mixed considering the genres and they rarely release similar albums, the setlist was quite fluid and there weren’t too many deviations from song to song. Though slower songs such as “Tragic Idol” have just accelerated.
The moments that were most highlighted were definitely during songs such as “Faith Devides Us – Death Unites Us”, where the audience sang the refrain out of all their voices, or the songs that gave them more attention in the media at the beginning like “As I Die”. Frankly, all the songs were done very well without any failures.
At least, we heard Nick after encore on songs like “No Hope in Sight”, where Nick’s reborn rougher vocals has resulted with audience’s indispensable screaming in the name of Bloodbath and their song “Eaten”.
This performance was inferior than the show two years ago because of technical problems, but Paradise Lost gave us another very solid and professional performance. As far as I’m concerned, they can keep this tradition and come more often!
Paradise Lost setlist:
1. Gods of Ancient
3. From the Gallows
4. One Second
5. Tragic Idol
8. An Eternity of Lies
9. Faith Divides Us – Death Unites Us
10. Blood and Chaos
11. As I Die
12. Beneath Broken Earth
13. Embers Fire
14. No Hope in Sight
15. The Longest Winter
16. Say Just Words