Paradise Lost (1988-present): a Death Metal band from Halifax, UK.
ounded by Nick Holmes (vocals), Gregor MacIntosh (guitar), Aaron Aedy (guitar), Stephen Edmondson (bass) and Matt Archer (drums), Paradise Lost initially played death metal but drifted quickly into the UK and US influenced grindcore thrash metal style, with punk rock elements thrown in for good measure. After mixing in doom laden backtracks their style became known as "death-ddom". They would soon after be regarded as the main influence for the later gothic metal movement.
Taking their name from a famous Milton poem, they signed to the 'Peaceville' label in 1990 with their Lost Paradise debut emerging shortly after. In keeping with their literary influences their lyrics centered on their take on the misery of life. The aptly titled follow-up album, Gothic (1991), saw the band slowing things down, adding keyboards and female vocals and eliminating the death metal grunt; generally drifting away from their death metal roots. After signing to 'Music For Nations' they would release Shades Of God (1992) and Icon (1993), the later set getting them long overdue critical acclaim and crossover fan base.
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For such a long surviving heavy metal band, their line-up has remained refreshingly stable, with only the drums coming into flux by featuring its first turn-over in 1994 with Lee Morris, to be followed by Jeff Singer (2004-2008), Mark Heron (2008-2009; session only), Peter Damin (2009) and Adrian Erlandsson - (2009-2015). Milton Evans would be the only additional member as session lead guitar (1999), and keyboards, backing vocals (2011).
Draconian Times (1995) finally saw Paradise Lost hit the charts with a UK 16 coming across as a Metallica and The Sisters Of Mercy meet Depeche Mode. The atmospheric misery laden sounds were resumed on One Second (1997) getting them a 31 UK.
But things went decidedly down hill after their Reflection (1998) compilation, for the follow-ups, Host (1999) and Believe In Nothing (2001), their sound drifted too far into the atmospherics coming across as more Depeche Mode than their true selves, leaving these releases to not fare as well as their predecessors. Their 2002 release of Symbol Of Life saw them attempting to recover their mid-period sound. In March of 2004, however, Lee Morris would leave for personal and artistic differences. Later that year, the aforementioned, Jeff Singer (ex-Blaze/ex-Kill II This) took over the drum stool in time for Paradise Lost (2005), only the second membership change for the band, and a change that would last another 10 years, until 2004 when it went into flux again. The albums In Requiem (2007), Faith Divides Us - Death Unites Us (2009), Tragic Idol (2012), The Plague Within (2015), Medusa (2017) and Obsidian (2020) would follow.
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