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:: Paradise Lost - The Anatomy Of Melancholy

Following on from their huge comeback album ‘In Requiem’ last year, West Yorkshire (U.K.) based gothic rock/metal legends Paradise Lost are back with a new live effort in ‘The Anatomy Of Melancholy’. Despite having already released a few live video/DVD efforts in the past, none have managed to really capture the many shifts in sound and direction the band has made throughout their twenty year career. ‘The Anatomy Of Melancholy’ on the other hand is the first Paradise Lost DVD that manages to do just that.

Filmed at Camden’s infamous and lavish Koko venue in front of a sold-out crowd, ‘The Anatomy Of Melancholy’ presents an absolutely blinding live performance from the seminal gothic rock/metal act, with every phase of the band’s ever evolving career represented over the course of their twenty-two song set list. Although unfamiliar to most of the crowd, set opener ‘The Enemy’ is given a warm reception for its live premier. Unlike the studio version, ‘The Enemy’ sounds heavier and more aggressive, and sets the tone for the remainder of the one hundred minutes.

From here, Paradise Lost hand select classics from 1991’s ‘Gothic’ (‘Gothic’ and ‘Eternal’), 1992’s ‘Shades Of God’ (‘As I Die’ and ‘Pity The Sadness’), 1993’s ‘Icon’ (‘True Belief’ and ‘Embers Fire’), 1995’s ‘Draconian Times’ (‘Forever Failure’, ‘Once Solemn’ and ‘The Last Time’) and 1997’s ‘One Second’ (‘One Second’ and ‘Say Just Words’). But what’s really surprising is just how fitting the songs are from their more controversial albums in amongst the older numbers. Examples of this come in ‘So Much Is Lost’ (1999’s ‘Host’), ‘Mouth’ (2001’s ‘Believe In Nothing’), ‘Erased’, ‘No Celebration’ (Both from 2002’s ‘Symbol Of Life’), ‘Grey’ and ‘Red Shift’ (Both from 2005’s ‘Paradise Lost’).

Apart from the above mentioned tracks, the band revisits the rare b-side track ‘Sweetness’ (From the ‘Seals The Sense’ EP from 1994), run through a savage version of their latest single ‘Praise Lamented Shade’ and offer up an uncredited version of ‘Isolate’ (2002’s ‘Symbol Of Life’) as part of their impromptu second encore. Performance wise, the band are simply flawless, with Holmes himself standing out as the most impressive with his vocals throughout. The filmed footage itself is no less impressive with everything beautifully shot and with the editing capturing and complimenting the band’s amazing concert.

In terms of extras (which are present on the second disc of the DVD), we’re offered up an insightful and often humorous fifteen minute interview with the band themselves, a mildly interesting nine minute chat with various fans outside the Koko venue following Paradise Lost’s performance, and a revealing thirty minute documentary documenting the band’s European tour from 2007. There’s also a quick trailer of last years ‘Over The Madness’ documentary, as well as promotional video clips for ‘The Enemy’ and ‘Praise Lamented Shade’.

More often than not, it’s the extras on DVD releases that determine whether or not it is a hit, or a complete miss. But in the case of ‘The Anatomy Of Melancholy’, its Paradise Lost’s career spanning concert itself that’s really makes this package essential. The extras are just that – extra bonus material. After an amazing album (‘In Requiem’), Paradise Lost has once again come up with something truly special with ‘The Anatomy Of Melancholy’. This is an absolute must for Paradise Lost fans both old and new.

DVD Extras

fifteen minute interview with the band
nine minute chat with various fans
thirty minute documentary documenting the band’s European tour from 2007
trailer of last years ‘Over The Madness’ documentary
promotional video clips for ‘The Enemy’ and ‘Praise Lamented Shade’

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