Paradise Lost / Insomnium – King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, Glasgow

Insomnium

[For more pics of both bands, check out the Flickr sets: Insomnium / Paradise Lost]

You know sometimes you get to a gig, hear the support and think “I should have got here a little earlier”? Well, that happened tonight.

King Tut’s always have a late doors-opening time, around 8:30 when most venues are nearer 7:00. As such, I never know when to get there and by the time I should be leaving the house I’m actually starting to wind down for the night and thinking about getting a cuppa. Yes, I’m getting old. I’m dealing with it, so you have to as well.

I got to the venue around 10:00, picked up my Sacred Reich ticket from the bar (No booking fee! **** you, TicketMaster!) and walked upstairs with a pint of the eponymous lager. The place was packed as Finnish deathers Insomnium played melodically towards the end of their set. There were plenty of appreciative cheers from the crowd for the two songs I heard and rightly so. Definitely a band I’ll be checking out soon.

I’ve been following Paradise Lost for some time now – since my uni days in Bradford, in fact, around the time that Shades of God and Icon came out. The first time I saw them was at the Queen’s Hall, if I remember correctly, where I got in free as I was with the university radio station. The next time I saw them, or at least Aaron Aedy, was when I was glass-collecting at Rios and he wished me happy new year.

Paradise Lost
Paradise Lost (Photo credit: Iain Purdie)

That, for me, sums the guys up. You meet them once as a studenty fanboy, and they remember you enough to say “hello” several months later when they’re shitfaced at a new year party. Hell, I saw him a year later when I was working in PC World (dark days indeed) and I think I sold him a computer. The next time they played Bradford I was sat next to Aaron’s mum up in the gods at the St George’s Hall. The downside of guest lists is you often don’t know where they’ll put you!

Anyway, as the years went on (pretty much post-Draconian Times), I kind of lost track of Paradise Lost. I rediscovered them a few months ago and was pleased to see they were still doing well though mainly abroad. This was emphasised by the fact that they were playing a venue as small as King Tut’s on their tour. Great place, but it is tiny.

So on to the gig. With a little over an hour to fill, they managed quite a variety. Of course, I know the old stuff best but there’s nothing wrong with the newer material as I discovered. I think there were only two tracks off the newest release, Tragic Idol, which came out… erm… today! Along with those were a handful of others I didn’t really recognise, but quite a few I did.

“Widow”, “One Second”, “As I Die”… all great songs and as with many artists, these older numbers were the ones the fans cheered the loudest for. Nick introduced each track with his typical style of humour mixed with a dash of “miserable bastard”. Let’s just say that Jack Dee has some competition.

It is great to see a band play when the core has been together for so long. The only member currently with them not to have been there since 1988 is drummer Adrian Erlandsson. The other four are founder members and have never left the band, even temporarily as far as I can tell. To work and tour for so long with the same guys says a lot about them, and they’re very good live as a result.

Aaron is constantly banging his head a-la Scott Ian, Greg (still with long hair, the bastard) poses as he plays the high notes, Steve keeps the rhythm going on bass and Nick leads from the front. Having seen them at Download some years back, they’re as confident in front of a festival crowd as a couple of hundred drunk Glaswegians and it’s good to have had the chance to see them in front of such a small crowd.

Definitely worth taking my slippers off for, and I’ll be hunting for the new album in the morning.

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