Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Review: PARADISE LOST "TRAGIC IDOL" 2012

Paradise Lost
Tragic Idol CD 2012
Century Media Records

Ok, I must confess that starting on their 1999's "Host" I felt that Paradise Lost would never return to the dark path of doom metal. Things went too mellow for them since then. And another confession that I have to make is that I've never heard of their "Faith Divides Us...", their 12th album since I got a crack CD (thank you Mr. Postmastarrr!!). Therefore, I find it difficult to compare this 2012 "Tragic Idol" to their previous latest album.

Nevertheless, things went quite well after I spin the CD for the first time. The memories refreshed back with their "Icon" or "Draconian Times" era, where most of their dark sounds were still a contributing factor towards their heaviness. I thought that "Tragic Idol" is a great reminiscence of their mid-90s era, which more like a tombstone of death doom metal, and a new-born era of Depeche Mode-alike gothic metal.

Not that I totally ignore the slow paced gothic metal like what Paradise Lost offered. But to hear "Tragic Idol" the time slowly crept back not only to their 95's "Draconian Times", but it took me back to their 1991's "Gothic", an album that I favor most, and some riffs in this album (i.e. "Theories From Another World") are reminding me to their 1991's album.

So, how should I conclude all the elements in 2012's "Tragic Idol" without having to touch the technical aspects? I would say that this album has melancholic, melodic riffs, blended with semi-tortured clean vocals (somehow over Hetfields'), heavy drum works that varies parallel with the variation in guitar riffs, resulting a heavier gothic metal sound, of course intensity is an element that Paradise Lost tried to insert in all of their songs in this album.

I would say that "Tragic Idol" might not be the best album of 2012, but surely this album has been spinning for quite some time. Who knows, in a few days left, "Tragic Idol" might be nominated as the best 2012 album in my own chart. And oh, this album is highly recommended for those who are into their 2009's "Faith Divides Us.." and the early works of Greg Mackintosh (also his works in Vallenfyre).


Review: PURTENANCE "SACRIFICE THE KING" MCD 2012

Purtenance
Sacrifice The King MCD 2012
Xtreem Music

Once again, a comeback made from the Finnish gods of death metal, Purtenance. Are we had enough with this "comeback" events? Or we do need this "comeback" due to the fact that the scene is now crowded and overloaded with bands trying to be a copycat of what those 90s bands (or I'd say as early death metal bands if you are not fond of associating the term "90s death metal"), and we need those bands to revive and to show that all others are wimps and only the 90s death metal is real?




I don't prefer to say that those 90s bands could do better, especially a decade after the new millennium which mark a far milestone from the early 90s. Tastes and preferences are changing, although we are talking about the same sound of "old school death metal". The technology contributes to divide the gap of musical quality, and resulting the clean version of "old school death metal".

To cut the crap, Purtenance's comeback is one of the most anticipating event for me, but the MCD reflects biggest problem as what I explained in the first paragraph. In spite of having sounded like brutal and a VERY ORDINARY death metal, the productions of their debut "Members of Immortal Damnation" is far beyond what this MCD brings. Again, the differences of time (the debut was in 1992) makes my expectation towards this MCD slightly lower and thank God, the perceived quality of this MCD surpassed the expectation.



This MCD runs about 17 minutes, a period of semi-brutal death metal, leaving all the "old school", dark feelings which you can heard in their "Member..." debut. The MCD plays fast and without doubt, it is not a release that I will spin more and more. The guitar works are less distorted. If I could compare it to the Malaysian band, I would say that it is the sound when SUFFERCATION breaks a chain of brutality towards more groove in their third album "In Sufferance".

To conclude, I would say that PURTENANCE are doing fine. Their comeback is accepted positively worldwide, the supports are there. But as I said earlier, the expectation of what reformed bands are offering should be set lower to avoid any disappointment. I did that, and I glad that I am still a fan of PURTENANCE!