Author Topic: [Music] Paradise Lost - In Requiem  (Read 1023 times)

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Offline Darkes7

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[Music] Paradise Lost - In Requiem
« on: November 27, 2009, 05:07:08 PM »
Released: 2007
Genre: Gothic metal
Album line-up:
Nick Holmes - vocals
Greg Mackintosh - lead guitars
Aaron Aedy - rhythm and acoustic guitars
Steve Edmondson - bass guitar
Jeff Singer - drums


Flawless?...

Gothic metal is a quite diverse sub-genre of metal – starting from pretty light and melodic, balancing on the border between „rock” and „metal”, ending at heavy and very dark, even slightly doom-influenced. Paradise Lost, basically the creators of gothic metal, clearly originate from the latter with roots deep in doom metal, and after a fairly long period of experimentation with lighter and more electronic styles, „In Requiem” was a kind of return to the roots – although it's definitely more than just that.

The album is a combination of dark, heavy and epic style with beautiful, melodic guitar solos and soft keyboards – this description shows the style of „In Requiem” quite well, although each song is an entity of its own here and the album doesn't just blend together. It seems, however, that the album is divided into two halves – the first half, from „Never from the Damned” to „Requiem” clearly emphasises the heavier side of the band, with even some doom elements, while the second half – from “Unreachable” to “Sedative God” shows the “rockier” side of the band, with a slightly lighter style and more “catchy” songs. The closing track, “Your Own Reality” is something different than the rest – being probably the lightest song, with plenty of melody and soft vocals. This adds to the diversity of the album, although one thing seems obvious to me – the first half is clearly much stronger. All five songs are flawless, with some “out of the box” structure and great songwriting, with both the heavy riffs and melodic solos being top quality. The second half, unfortunately, sometimes loses its way a bit – it's a bit repetitive, the songwriting is more predictable, they also lack the emotion of the first half. “Unreachable” and “Sedative God” are quite strong songs with very good choruses and many memorable parts, but “Prelude to Descent” and “Fallen Children” seem to be clearly the weakest point of the album, with nothing particularly remarkable about them. The album as a whole, however, is fairly consistent – the second half seems a bit less creative, but there aren't many obvious weak moments.

The strongest point of the album are definitely the guitars, especially the lead guitar. The riffs themselves are mostly truly excellent - “Never for the Damned” particularly shines here - but the melodic lead guitar and solos are simply impressive, “Requiem” being definitely the best example here, with the best guitar work on the album and its beautiful solos. The drums and bass work very well as the rhythm section here providing a very good base for the music, and occasionally creating some remarkable moments (intro of “Never for the Damned”). The controversial point of the album seem to be the vocals – but personally, I don't have any criticism towards them. They're mostly truly emotional and powerful – even if at a few moments they seem slightly forced – with many great moments, like the chorus of “The Enemy”, but the soft vocals in “Your Own Reality” are also flawless.

I can find three obvious highlights on the album – the opening track, “Never for the Damned”, with it's amazing riffs, monumental style and great vocals, instantly allows to enter the atmosphere of the album. The second one is the closing track “Your Own Reality” - like mentioned before, probably the lightest and softest one, with brilliant, melodic guitar work and very nice, soft vocal style. The greatest one, however, is the (nearly) title track “Requiem” - with some of the best moments of the whole album, truly beautiful and melancholic guitars, and probably the most powerful vocals on the album. These three are clearly the strongest points of “In Requiem”, but even the weakest tracks of the album are far from weak.

Overall, “In Requiem” is a great example of gothic metal done right – just like it can be expected from the genre, it's dark and heavy, monumental and epic, and also beautiful and melodic – there are many memorable parts here, and it's obvious that it's been created by a band with a lot of experience, but still plenty of ideas and creativity. It's not flawless, but certainly a very strong one and worth recommending.

Album rating: 83%

Personal favourites: Requiem, Never For The Damned, Your Own Reality
Least favourite: Prelude to Descent, Fallen Children
« Last Edit: June 04, 2010, 04:36:04 PM by Darkes7 »