Paradise Lost + Lacuna Coil + Katatonia
@ The Roundhouse, Camden
November 3rd 2013
Review by Ellen Norvang
Photography by Nikki Ryan
Paradise Lost does not need an introduction to fans of gothic metal. It has been 25 years of existence for the Yorkshire boys. It has been 25 years with consistent bands members if you do not count the numerous changes on the drum kit. That is a long time for a band to exist and a long time for a band to maintain their own image, develop their own genre and influence several bands. It deserves a celebration and the setting is the Roundhouse in Camden, Sunday the 3rd of November 2013. What better season to celebrate and what better city to wrap up a UK tour that has been embracing the band’s quarter of a century journey.
Not only does Paradise Lost have a back catalogue and a fan base big enough to host an evening on their own, but the band have invited the finest support acts to join them on the anniversary tour.
Katatonia, who are not shy to admit that Paradise Lost has been a major influence, are the first act to enter the stage on this cold, rainy evening.After a year since last visiting the English capital the Swedes had decided to make this tour a bit different and, as fashionable as it is now a days, play their mile stone, “Viva Emptiness” from start till end, although finishing of with the first track of the album and not following the tracklist dictatorially.
The 2003 release was the album that marked Katatonia with a bit more mainstream twist to their sound.
It is raw, melancholic and gloomy lyrics where sunshine does not exist.
Not many in the heavy metal scene have such a powerful fragility to their voice as lead singer Jonas does.
They manage to transform the sound from the record, making it sound exactly like the record without sounding nerveless and boring. Somehow the Roundhouse does not seem intimate enough for Katatonia’s sound, but the band manages to manifest and prove that many bands sound or play like them.
1. Inside the City of Glass
2. Wait Outside
6. Walking by a Wire
7. One Year From Now
9. Burn the Remembrance
10. Will I Arrive
11. A Premonition
14. Ghost of the Sun
Second band on stage is Italian Lacuna Coil, who is one of the few gothic female fronted bands that stands out.
No soprano singing and no front woman tightened up in a corset. Cristina Scabbia can sing, she has a rare power as a front lady and she wants to interact with her audience.
Unfortunately she has had an unnecessary sidekick, Andrea Ferro, throughout the bands history. He is bearable on records, but live it gets cringing. He will never manage the English language good enough to make it unite as singers.
She steals the show and it is hard not to be admired by the fact that this now 41 year old woman has such a beauty, voice and charisma that really is to blame for the whole band’s success.
After 3 songs the audience is warmed up and this is where the band proves strength.
They are crowd-pleasers and not shy to let their fans know their gratitude or aiming to get more people to come out for their next gigs.
Lacuna Coil’s old material is the most interesting. Not necessarily the most approachable for the listener, but their latest releases has left them as a shadow of themselves and therefore it is a pleasure to hear the old material come to life on stage.
1. I Don’t Believe in Tomorrow
2. Kill the Light
3. Fragments of Faith
4. Heaven’s a Lie
5. The Game
6. Our Truth
8. Without Fear
11. Trip the Darkness
It’s fair to say that not often are you treated to such good warm up acts and as the room is as ready as can be Paradise Lost enters the stage and opens up for a journey throughout their impressive back catalogue.
There is instantly a lot of brotherly headbanging going on. As if this night not only embarks on the band’s anniversary, but also friends among the audience’s anniversary.
Leadsinger, Nick Holmes, has a sense of humour just as dark as their musically universe which comes to show when things like “Clap like you were watching U2” is being sad from the stage. It makes the atmosphere friendly and comradely.
During the epic “Gothic” the set really kicks off. It is sing-a-long, synchronic swaying and fists to the sky that dominates the room.
25 years makes a band sound tight and precise in their sound, but not once does it look like the band is playing by routine or feel bored.
As much as the perfect night is finishing off before it becomes too long the band could have chosen a different ending to the set as the crowd seemed to wander off and lose interest…but with that said I doubt anyone left the Roundhouse disappointed.
1. Mortals Watch the Day
2. So Much Is Lost
6. Faith Divides Us – Death Unites Us
7. Tragic Idol
8. Never for the Damned
10. Say Just Words
11. Rotting Misery
12. One Second
13. True Belief
14. Over the Madness