Rating:
N/A
Paradise Lost - Believe In Nothing
2001


01. I Am Nothing
02. Mouth
03. Fader
04. Look At Me Now
05. Illumination
06. Something Real
07. Divided
08. Sell It To The World
09. Never Again
10. Control
11. No Reason
12. World Pretending
13. Sway [Japanese bonus]
14. Gone [Japanese bonus]
15. Waiting For God [Japanese bonus]


If there is a Goth Metal band that needs no introduction, then that would certainly be this genre's "official" originators, Paradise Lost. It is also perhaps obsolete to mention for the thousandth time how they moved from their initial Death/Doom sound to a much more radio-friendly synthesis of Goth Rock, Synthpop and various other non-metal influences, only to reemerge as a real Goth Metal act with the last couple of albums. "Believe in Nothing" might just be the very peak of their radio-friendliness, even despite the fact that their previous album "Host" has absolutely nothing to do with metal or rock whatsoever.

There is a rumor going around how the songwriter, Gregor Mackintosh, stated that this album does not actually exist to him, as its making was under complete control of the label. And boy, does it show! Naturally, labels want the records they produce to sell well, and that means making the music as easy for the casual listener as possible. "Believe in Nothing" fits into this role perfectly. It is an amazingly catchy, at times very fun to listen to, but shallow and simple piece of music.

Unlike "Host", the guitars are very prominent here. Don't think that this means the album is heavy, or that the riffs are a technical masterpiece, however. They are kept simple, and more in the supportive role, while various electronic sounds flow together and set the stage for Nick's wonderful baritone. I don't know if this is because this album is very vocally driven, but I've never heard Nick do a better job with his clean singing. Oddly enough, the atmosphere is still kept bleak and melancholic through the majority of the album, so even a die-hard fan of early Paradise Lost can find at least something enjoyable."World Pretending" and "Divided" for example. The thing that is perhaps the biggest flaw of this album is that every song, from the first to the last, follows the same kind of simple, classic rock structure. Opening section, a quiet part where Nick sings, vocal driven chorus, repeat, without even a slightest desire to spice things up. Give the song something new, something we wouldn't be able to predict.

It's not that bad, though. "I Am Nothing" features a wonderful riff, and one of the catchiest choruses I ever heard. "Mouth" is a classic example of how to make a chart-topping rock song and "Look at Me Now" has a slightly psychedelic effect on the listener. The problem is that many other songs feel like fillers, though. I never understood what the hell "Control" and "Sell it To The World" are doing on this CD, besides increasing the album's length for another 6-7 minutes.

I normally don't do this, but I left this album without a rating. Why? Giving a high rating to something this simple, shallow and unvaried would just not be fair, but at the same time I remember how "I Am Nothing" and "Something Real" refused to get out of my head for days after I first heard them, and I can't force myself to give an album with such songs a low rating. The review itself will have to suffice.


Band profile: Paradise Lost
Album: Believe In Nothing


 


written by Slayer666 | 13.11.2010


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



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Kenos - 13.11.2010 at 19:35  
Now this is a crappy album.
Slayer666 - 13.11.2010 at 19:47  
Written by Guest on 13.11.2010 at 19:28

Never Again - Control - No Reason is the worst trilogy ever i think there's a read between the lines message too...

Haha, that is absolutely a subliminal message, I wonder how I didn't notice that.
Richard - 14.11.2010 at 03:44  
The review more or less nails it. I have similar kinds of mixed feelings about this album - it's not one of their best moments, and bear in mind that PL are one of my favourite bands of all time - but it still has some good songs such as I Am Nothing, Mouth, Look at me Now, Never Again and World Pretending, despite some of the more negative aspects of the album as a whole.

The review mentions Gregor Mackintosh's feelings about this album, and anyone interested in this band should check out the Paradise Lost DVD 'Over the Madness' (2007) if they haven't done so already, as it includes a long interview with Gregor where he talks about the band's history and each album up until In Requiem, including the situation surrounding Believe in Nothing.
Passenger - 15.02.2012 at 22:13  
Whatever people say (including Mackintosh) I honestly believe there are awesome songs here, and I'd go as far as saying Mouth is one of the 10 best songs they've ever written, so much emotion and melancholy coming out in such a simple way.I stand by this album like I would stand by the school's bullied nerd.
JohnDoe - 18.02.2012 at 02:21  
Written by Passenger on 15.02.2012 at 22:13

Whatever people say (including Mackintosh) I honestly believe there are awesome songs here, and I'd go as far as saying Mouth is one of the 10 best songs they've ever written, so much emotion and melancholy coming out in such a simple way.I stand by this album like I would stand by the school's bullied nerd.


I agree

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