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Paradise Lost - Believe in Nothing (Reissue)

Paradise Lost
Believe in Nothing (Reissue)
by Justin "Witty City' Wittenmeier at 25 June 2018, 4:59 AM

English Doom legends PARADISE LOST have had a long career that hasn’t been without its setbacks or hard right turns.  They went through an odd phase where they completely changed their sound and abandoned Metal altogether in favor of a more synth driven 80’s pop rock sound.  That album was called “Host,” and while it was good for what it was, it seemed like the band was indeed lost.  Back in its original release, “Believe In Nothing” was touted a more of a return to form for the band, especially compared to “Host.”

However, it is well known story that the band doesn’t particular care for the album, mostly it seems due to the production.  Compared to the original release, the guitars are definitely more prominent and give it the metal edge the original one lacked.  Unfortunately, it seems to bury the bass behind those guitars.  As it stands, the album doesn’t sound bad, but it also doesn’t sound good enough to warrant a second purchase if you already own the original. So does the production focusing more on the heavy guitar change things this time around?  No.  The production only serves to highlight the fact of the guitar seeming like it was placed there just for the album to “be more metal.”  In fact, the production proves the major issue the first time around was the lack luster song writing.   At least with Host, the band tried to have a different sound and did what they wanted but it seems like they were just treading water in this one, not realizing they were already drowning.

Sure, the riffs are heavy, but they are bland with very little that stands out at all. Considering their roots are in Gothic Doom Metal, this album wasn’t really a return to that sound.  Still, there are some good things.  Far as atmosphere goes, “Believe In Nothing,” does have a more Gothic sound but there is nothing here for Doom fans. Nick Holmes’ vocals continue to be the highlight of the band and more than ever the vocals are the focus on this release.  Although there are obviously no growls or screams to be heard, Holmes’ deep Gothic voice is still intact and remain the hook for the boring approach the instruments took.  The album is also front loaded; the first two tracks are the best and each one after just gets worse and worse.  I struggled to get through the whole album and I imagine most PARADISE LOST fans would too.

As it stands, this is actually slightly worse than “Host,” because the metal parts just seemed to be tacked on.  It isn’t a bad album but I’m glad the band left their wayward period behind them and returned to their signature sound.  Instead of checking out this release, just skip it and buy their latest two releases “The Plague Within,” and “Medusa.”

Songwriting: 6
Originality: 6
Memorability: 6
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. I Am Nothing
2. Mouth
3. Fader
4. Look At Me Now
5. Illumination
6. Something Real
7. Divided
8. Sell It To The World
9. Never Again
10. Control
11. No Reason
12. World Pretending
Lineup:
Nick Holmes – Vocals
Gregor Mackintosh – Lead Guitars, Keyboards, Programming, String Arrangements
Aaron Aedy – Rhythm Guitars
Stephen Edmondson – Bass
Lee Morris – Drums
Record Label: Nuclear Blast
     


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