Paradise Lost: The Plague Within

A most welcome plague on all our houses.

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The best Paradise Lost album in years. Simple as that. One that combines the intensity of Shades Of God with the untamed blare of Gothic and the suppleness of Draconian Times.

This is almost the ultimate representation of what the band have always done well, having gloominess and darkness plus an epic soundscape. Moreover, you can hear the tight-knit joy in their playing, especially from guitarists Aaron Aedy and Greg Mackintosh, while Nick Holmes’ vocals veer from gruff growls to mournful sighs.

You get the full force of the Paradise Lost vigour on the anthemic Punishment Through Time, the doominess of Beneath Broken Earth and the violently sophisticated Return To The Sun. These are high-grade compositions, well served by producer Gomez’s heavy hand.

The Plague Within serves as a reminder that not only did Paradise Lost create the blueprint for gothic metal, but they still do it brilliantly./o:p

Malcolm Dome

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica, published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009. He died in 2021