Updated: Oct 30, 2020
Album Review: Paradise In Flames - Devil's Collection
Reviewed by Dan Barnes
Brazil is rarely most people stopping off point for a whistle-stop tour of the world’s Black Metal hot-spots. But it is easy to forget the influence that those early South American bands like Sarcofago and Vulcano had on the burgeoning extreme metal scene; hell, even Sepultura’s fledgling sound had a fair amount of Blackness all of its own.
Devil’s Collection is the third album from Brazilian Black Metal fiends, Paradise In Flames, and arrives a whole seven years after their last record, Labirinto de Metáforas. Although the topography of the Brazilian rainforest is a world away from the frozen wildernesses of Scandinavia, the sounds they inspire are quite similar.
Devil’s Collection begins with a statement of intent directly drawn from the Cradle of Filth playbook: it’s big, brash and bombastic, filled with epic grandeur that pervades throughout the rest of the album. Akin to mid-era Dimmu Borgir, before Shagrath and company went all in on the sythns. Symphonic elements clash with blast-beats and grand choirs compete with the hellish vocals on tracks like I’m Sure Your Gods Have Seen This Before and The Tepes. Huge towering riffs permeate the album and those dervish drums are supplemented by thick guitar tones and heavy riffs.
Devil’s Collection is, generally speaking, a mid-paced Black Metal record but on Satan’s Law Tuemix 3 Paradise In Flames mix things up a little and begin slowly, almost lumberingly, before introducing a meaty mid-section reminiscent of latter-era Emperor.
Rather than pile on the symphonic the whole way across Devil’s Collection, Paradise In Flames pay homage to the other, nastier elements of their Black Metal heritage. Although still evident, the bombast is kept to a minimum on It’s All Wrong, instead letting the speed and aggression of the track carry the evil intention in the ghoulish vocals and choppy guitar.
Militaristic drumming adds layers to Has Never Seen a World Without War and as the album powers to its conclusion the tempo increases, the Second Wave elements push through. Ripping Off False Masks and Devil From the Sky are unapologetic in their Norwegian influence.
Devil’s Collection is a massive Black Metal statement, filled with epic grandeur and bombastic intent. If, like me, you thought the last couple of Dimmu Borgir albums have taken things a little too far, then give Paradise In Flames’ new platter a spin. You’ll be glad you did!