Paradise Lost is one of those bands who in my view never made a
bad album. Yes, they made albums in their 20-year+ career that weren't straight
classics, but bad albums as such, they never delivered. The trio of 'Host', 'Believe
in Nothing' and 'Symbol of Life' marked something which some would probably call
a low-point in the career of the British ur-fathers of goth metal, however, one
shouldn't forget just how high the bar was set by genre defining pieces like
'One Second', 'Draconian Times', 'Icon', etc.
2005's 'Paradise Lost' marked a change. The albums since then have been very
strong efforts, climaxing with 2009's 'Faith Divides Us, Death Unites Us', one
of the best albums Paradise Lost have ever unleashed upon the world.
I'm happy to announce that Yorkshire's proud sons are staying on the high curve
with the new album, 'Tragic Idol'. Again, Paradise Lost are exploring their own
past, and those of us who loved 'Icon' and 'Draconian Times' can now weep for
joy! The sound and the feeling of those two albums are ever present on 'Tragic Idol',
only the production is obviously much better than what was on offer back then.
A cynic could venture that this is pure calculation and that Paradise Lost
shouldn't just copy themselves. I don't know; from the outset, the Brits were
innovative and formed a sub-genre. They never really stood still, and this is
still the case. Even if the majority of these songs could have been written for
'Icon' or 'Draconian...', there is also room for a crushing riff monster like
Theories from Another World which isn't necessarily a typical PL tune.
As I see it, Paradise Lost is just perfecting what they themselves started so
many years ago. If goth and doom is what you're looking for, then you certainly
get it here in the way that only Paradise Lost can deliver it, with the
trademark, dirge-laden lead riffing of Greg Mackintosh and the equally trademark
rhythm provided by Aaron Aedy, and with a Nick Holmes whose vocal performance is
as heart-felt and filled with emotion as it ever were.
What ever way you go about it, the quality of the material on this album is so
bloody high that you can only surrender yourself to the music and simply enjoy
it. I can feel in my old bones that this is going to be one of the best albums