Paradise Lost, Arkan - Paris, France, 3rd April 2011

Event: Paradise Lost: Draconian Times Tour
Written by: White Winter Sun
Published: 22.04.2011

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Paradise Lost, Arkan - Paris, France, 3rd April 2011 by White Winter Sun (22)
Initially scheduled at the Bataclan, then transferred to the Elysée Montmartre, this show was postponed and re-scheduled once again to the Bataclan due to fire damage at the Elysée Montmartre. I take the opportunity to wish good luck to the operators of the Elysée Montmartre to pursue their fantastic work since this sad event and to bring back metal bands on stage as soon as possible in this historical place of Paris.


Arkan

The venue and the date were not the only changes of this night. Indeed it was not Swedish metallers Ghost who were the openers, they were replaced by French metallers Arkan. To be completely honest with you, it was only the second time that I saw Arkan on stage. Indeed, the previous time was near one year ago in Paris when I discovered them (the band was part of supporting act on the "The Never Ending Tour Of Orphaned Land"). For those of you who are not familiar with the band, Arkan's style can be summed up as Gothic/Melodic Death metal tinted with oriental tunes.

The last time I saw them, they delivered a pretty good show, and tonight it was the case once again. Indeed the band was pretty active on stage, showing in their attitude their pleasure to be here. The mix of clean vocals from Sarah and harsh vocals from Florent worked well live, and this duality fits perfectly with the band's music. Furthermore Sarah affords the luxury of some belly dancing when the oriental tunes predominate.



Also I would like to open a little parenthesis here. As every time that a band is fronted by a woman, seems that it is such evidence, that you cannot avoid some profound reflections and philosophical thoughts. Indeed, once again (and as always I would say), few "A poil!" ("Get naked!" in English) were blared out. So next time guys, please be more polite with ladies and be more mature above all, really. End of my parenthesis.



To return on a more serious note, the performance delivered by the band was far for being bad and I must say that I have had a good time even though I am not a huge fan of them. Their energy and their enthusiastic attitude caught me during their set. Their sound was powerful and clear (which was not really the case for the headliner and as I will develop it later). The band's performance has also included new tracks taken from their forthcoming album, entitled Salam, which will be released on April 18th via Season Of Mist. Clearly this new album sounds pretty good from what I have heard tonight and remain in the same vein as their debut album, entitled Hilal. Finally "Chaos Cypher" concludes Arkan's set and the band leaves the stage under the clapping hands of the audience. Nice appetizer!



Arkan set list:

01. Origins
02. Inner Slaves
03. Tied Fates
04. Deus Vult
05. Groans Of The Abyss
06. Lords Decline
07. Blind Devotion
08. Chaos Cypher


Paradise Lost

After a brief stage replacement, UK gothic metal legends Paradise Lost hit the stage under the acclamation of the audience. Clearly the band was attempting here their final date of the "Draconian Times Tour".

As soon as the first tunes of "Enchantment" resound, the audience became active. Even though Paradise Lost is not the most aggressive and demonstrative band on stage, the band delivers a good quality show, supported by small/minimalist lights, which fit perfectly to the band's music to create the atmosphere. Indeed what can you expect better than their best album played in its entirety on stage? A free beer maybe? The drama is that it was nearly the case, but not really in the expected way. After only three songs, the girl on my left has definitively ruined my denim jacket with her beverage due to an unfortunate movement from her boyfriend. This just before the fourth song, entitled "Forever Failure". A sign? Who knows?

But let me return to be focused on the show. As I said above, Paradise Lost is not the kind of band who does tons and tons on stage, preferring a more sober attitude which is not incompatible with good efficiency. Furthermore the band is now well-known to be not really expressive on stage. And once again it was the case on this show. Indeed the band was not very talkative (as always I would say), but when Nick Holmes talks to the audience, fans answer immediately, especially on the first rows in the middle, which were rather crazy during the whole show. Also some slammers have punctuated the set, testifying of the motivation of the fans presents here tonight.



But everything was not so good. Indeed the most damageable point of the night was clearly the sound. Several times the singing from Nick was inaudible for a few seconds. Scandalmongers would say that he has more or less ruined his voice after Draconian Times. But clearly it was mostly due to technical problems and not to his lack of efficiency, especially as vocals on Draconian Times are much less harsh than on whichever old song they can ruin nowadays. The sound problems were extended to the guitars which were too much in the treble. Despite all these drawbacks, all members have done their job and they have pursued the show with energy, droning out Draconian Time's songs along the minutes.



As soon as the last tunes of "Jaded" ended, the band quickly leaves the stage. The audience immediately starts to scream the band's name. A couple of minutes later, they return on stage and kick off the first "encore" which has started with the title track from their latest album, entitled Faith Divides Us - Death Unites Us. Three other songs later, the band starts the second "encore" of the set, opened by "The Rise Of Denial". Then Nick announces the last song of the night and the show finally ends on the beautiful "As I Die", where the audience was really active and where the communion with the band reached a climax. The band finally quits the stage after regular salutations and under long acclamations from the fans.



Paradise Lost set list:

01. Enchantment
02. Hallowed Land
03. The Last Time
04. Forever Failure
05. Once Solemn
06. Shadowkings
07. Elusive Cure
08. Yearn For Change
09. Shades Of God
10. Hands Of Reason
11. I see Your Face
12. Jaded

Encore:

13. Faith Divides Us - Death Unites Us
14. True Belief
15. One Second
16. Say Just Words

Encore 2:

17. The Rise Of Denial
18. As I Die

(+ 2 soundcheck-songs for VIP ticket-holders [Link]: "No Celebration" and "Sweetness").


Conclusion
Great enjoyable evening indeed. Everything was there. A good opening act and a headliner who has delivered a solid show (despite some sound problems). For sure, it was not the best Paradise Lost show, but it was a really decent one and it was cool to see the band happy to play on this date. Nothing to add except that it was an entertaining night!




Also, I cannot conclude this report without giving many thanks to Roger Wessier from Base Production for the accreditation. Also thanks to Darkside Momo.
Written by White Winter Sun.
All photos taken by White Winter Sun.


 




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Asunder - 23.04.2011 at 02:58  
Arkan is the shit
Richard - 23.04.2011 at 03:33  
Good stuff, an interesting read. A not-overly-talkative and "sober attitude" onstage is perfectly appropriate for Paradise Lost, I say!
White Winter Sun - 23.04.2011 at 18:21  
Written by Richard on 23.04.2011 at 03:33

Good stuff, an interesting read.

Thanks man.

Written by Richard on 23.04.2011 at 03:33

A not-overly-talkative and "sober attitude" onstage is perfectly appropriate for Paradise Lost, I say!

Indeed, long speeches can break the mechanics of a show and in the case of Paradise Lost they do not fit well with the style of the band, of which sober and effective are the key words. I would add that Paradise Lost is typically the kind of band where you can close your eyes during the show and feel the emotions of the music to grow up on you.
Valentin B - 23.04.2011 at 21:21  
They didn't play Erased? i saw PL live last year and it was mos def the high point of the show. really great and catchy industrial rock to bang chicks to. anyway really cool light show!
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.04.2011 at 03:26  
His vocals were like that in Utrecht as well. And have been like that for the past six years or so. Plus the songs were played way too quick and the guitarists fucked up with loads of mistakes in every single song. This was a total idiotic blasphemy. gost blew PL right off the stage in Utrecht. The PL show was sooo bad I lfet before the end wanting my money back. But then again the PL fanboys lapped it up like mad. BTw please remember I was a huge PL fan back in the day up to and including this album and their live tours back then. Here it was like a third rate new wave band covering Draconian Times, a total and utter disgrace.
Marcel Hubregtse - 24.04.2011 at 03:28  
The reason Nick's vocals were inaudible at times was, at least in Utrecht, cause he had to sing the vocals off pieces of pare taped to the stage and when he bent over the vocals dropped out. Like I said earlier a total and fucking fisgrace this was.
Valentin B - 25.04.2011 at 09:08  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.04.2011 at 03:26

His vocals were like that in Utrecht as well. And have been like that for the past six years or so. Plus the songs were played way too quick and the guitarists fucked up with loads of mistakes in every single song. This was a total idiotic blasphemy. gost blew PL right off the stage in Utrecht. The PL show was sooo bad I lfet before the end wanting my money back. But then again the PL fanboys lapped it up like mad. BTw please remember I was a huge PL fan back in the day up to and including this album and their live tours back then. Here it was like a third rate new wave band covering Draconian Times, a total and utter disgrace.

how did you find Ghost? i guess they probably weren't a fisgrace
Marcel Hubregtse - 26.04.2011 at 03:15  
Written by Valentin B on 25.04.2011 at 09:08

Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.04.2011 at 03:26

His vocals were like that in Utrecht as well. And have been like that for the past six years or so. Plus the songs were played way too quick and the guitarists fucked up with loads of mistakes in every single song. This was a total idiotic blasphemy. gost blew PL right off the stage in Utrecht. The PL show was sooo bad I lfet before the end wanting my money back. But then again the PL fanboys lapped it up like mad. BTw please remember I was a huge PL fan back in the day up to and including this album and their live tours back then. Here it was like a third rate new wave band covering Draconian Times, a total and utter disgrace.

how did you find Ghost? i guess they probably weren't a fisgrace



Ghost were okay, but they are much better on album. The vocalist has problems with the high end of his singing live.
Slayer666 - 01.05.2011 at 12:52  
Written by Marcel Hubregtse on 24.04.2011 at 03:26

His vocals were like that in Utrecht as well. And have been like that for the past six years or so. Plus the songs were played way too quick and the guitarists fucked up with loads of mistakes in every single song. This was a total idiotic blasphemy. gost blew PL right off the stage in Utrecht. The PL show was sooo bad I lfet before the end wanting my money back. But then again the PL fanboys lapped it up like mad. BTw please remember I was a huge PL fan back in the day up to and including this album and their live tours back then. Here it was like a third rate new wave band covering Draconian Times, a total and utter disgrace.

Really? I checked a few YouTube vids from that show (I couldn't find you in the crowd, though ), everything seemed like a typical PL show to me: not particularly good, but not bad either.
That said, it sucks that they played 2 or 3 times in Greece on this tour, and didn't remember to go a bit north.
And playing "One Second" and "Say Just Words" instead of "Gothic" and something from Host is a crime...

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