Cradle of Filth – Trouble and their Double Lives

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Overall Score: 8/10
production: 8/10
performance: 8/10
setlist: 9/10
Pros: A well recorded live album that captures a legendary band on ferocious form
Cons: some notable set omissions

Live albums are a curious thing. Usually released to commemorate a touring cycle, anniversary or in some cases a special event. There are some cases where live albums have gone down in history for being iconic moments caught in time, but very rarely do they measure up to actually experiencing a band live. Let’s put it this way, you’d be hard pressed to find someone listening to a live album who wouldn’t rather be experiencing a gig in the flesh. 

Curiously, Trouble and their Double Lives is only Cradle of Filth’s second live album in their history, and even then it’s been over 20 years since the release of 2002’s Live Bait for the Dead, an album which itself saw a partial re release in 2007 under the guise of Eleven Burial Masses.

It doesn’t need to be said at this point, but Cradle of Filth are a fantastic live band, one of the very best. They are a band who comes alive onstage, so the thought of listening to them on a live recording is less than appealing, as so much of the experience of a Cradle show is automatically lost. With that said, with the setlist assembled here, and with the band on this current form, this is an incredibly well put together live recording.

Dani Filth is in fine voice and having a blast with the assembled masses between songs. Trouble and Their Double Lives’ biggest strength is the career spanning setlist featuring cuts across the band’s career. It’s incredible to hear how timeless songs like Bathory Aria, Born in a Burial Gown & Saffron’s Curse sound when played alongside the newer stuff like Heartbreak and Seance, Blackest Magick in Practice and the downright ferocious Right Wing of the Garden Triptych.

Even with some very notable omissions this is still a stacked collection of songs, showcasing a band that is note only aging like the finest of wines musically, but one that is also in the absolute form of their lives as a live band. Everything sounds faster, heavier, and more evil here than it does on record, and even though nothing will ever beat the feeling of being at an actual gig, especially a Cradle of Filth one, there is something that really comes to life here and gives this release a life of its own and dare I say that some of the versions of songs displayed on here rival and in some cases better the recorded versions.

As an added bonus there are two brand new songs here to get fans excited for the bands impending new album. She is a Fire & Demon Prince Regent are both energetic bangers. The former has a very classic early 2000’s feel to it, very melodic and cinematic while exuding a seductive edge. The latter is a more straightforward stomping Cradle rager. Both tracks once again solidify how great Cradle of Filth are as a band and one that is showing no signs of mellowing or slowing down any time sign.

Trouble and their Double Lives is a very good live album, made up of a fan pleasing career spanning set, a band on demonic form and a tantalizing taste of brand new music. This is a very well put together package that is sure to please Cradle of Filth fans of all eras and gives them something to tide them over as well all await the brand new full length which will hopefully be here sooner than later.

Trouble and their Double Lives is available now via Napalm Records. Head to their online store to purchase a physical copy.

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