|Review: Paragon - The Dark Legacy|
|The Dark Legacy|
Label: Remedy Records
Year released: 2003
Genre: Heavy Metal
Review online: September 2, 2003
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
for:The Dark Legacy
Rated 4/5 (80%) (12 Votes)
Just when things were getting a little slow, here comes Paragon again like the Old Faithful of heavy metal, erupting with yet another furious slab of their old-fashioned metal attack. Jan (bass) had said that this, their sixth studio effort, was the fastest and heaviest album yet, and I can't argue with that assessment, because it's true.
For those unfamiliar with Paragon, strap in for a blazing heavy metal assault in the general vein of Saxon or even old Accept. There will be no neoclassical keyboard parts, no castrati vocals, no happy melodies and no sappy ballads. Here you will just get track after track of crunching steel riffs, hammering rhythms, and shout-along choruses to get your fists flailing and your head banging. Paragon seem purely incapable of writing a bad song, and there's not a clinker on this entire CD. After just a few listens you get to the point where with each new track you rub your hands together and say "all right, this one!" On a Paragon album you never have to skip around to get to "the good part" – you won't want to miss a track. It's hard to pick standouts when the songwriting is so consistent, but "The Legacy" and "Maze of Dread" have great riffs, "Breaking Glass" has a hell of a chorus, and "Eye of the Storm" – despite being one of the slower tracks – may be the best song here with its epic stomp and riffs from hell.
Now if you have heard Paragon's last two albums you will notice a certain similarity in the songwriting, and I have to say that a lack of real progression from the last 2 albums is the only flaw with this CD. Some of the songs here sound veeeerrrry similar to songs on "Law of the Blade" or "Steelbound". This is a very minor beef, and it's only noticeable if you have heard previous albums, but I sure hope these guys aren't running out of ideas. I would hate if one of my favorite bands lost their oomph. But again: a minor complaint. I am not one of those guys who will gripe all the time about a band needing to 'progress' and I would rather a band made the same album over and over than 'evolve' into a band that sucks. Sure, you can pretty much say that if you've heard one Paragon song, you've heard them all, but when a band kicks as much ass as this one, who gives a shit? I love Paragon for what they are, and I for one hope they never change, and may their metal powers never fade.
Remedy records seem to be getting better, as even though this is a digipack, it's not the gay all-cardboard type that the last 2 albums came in. This is a normal digipack with a plastic tray and everything. I'd still prefer a jewel case, but oh well. The cover art and design is Hella cool, and the lyrics seem, once again, to tell a story. This time it's about a guy who inherits an old mansion and gets sucked through a magic mirror into a kind of Hell-dimension where he has to fight horrible monsters. Cool. Jan says this is supposed to be the same dude who conquered the empire in "Law of the Blade" – I guess he's back from outer space.
And so, another first-rate release from Paragon. I have to say I don't love it quite as much as "Law of the Blade", but considering how cool I thought that album was, that's not saying a lot. I would take any Paragon album over just about any happy-flower-metal album you can name. Once again Paragon rule all over pale imitators and send the false-metal wankers and posers running for cover. "The Dark Legacy" is a heavy, stomping, utterly ruthless album that will delight every metaller who gets ahold of it. The legions of metal march on!
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