I like this album. It has all the trademark sounds: simple guitar melodies, the kind you can kid yourself you could do better; straight chugging power chords and crunchy rhythms and vocals as easy as falling off a log. The key to this band's success has always been musical simplicity.
No one survives a midlife crisis unchanged and after almost 25 years in the business, the same is true for Paradise Lost. Having returned to their sullen roots, I have to say, the results are all the better for it. The music has a slightly broader palate and depth to it that will appeal to more than just gothic personalities. By the end of the third track they've delivered a little of something new, old, and a fantastic guitar riff that sounds quintessentially like themselves. Even Nick Holmes' vocals have verged on getting excited and given us some lovely soft sung melodies.
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'Fear Of Impending Hell' is the first stand out track giving us sing along moments while combining classic riffing with dashes of that richer palette to spice things up. For those looking for something altogether more draconian, tracks 8 and 9 are as good it gets.
'Tragic Idol' and 'Worth Fighting For' both enjoy deep moody rumbling vocals that stretch into tortuous growls, laid down over simple chugging power chords. It was almost enough to have me skipping to those tracks repeatedly. The album is made up of quality music and mature songwriting with enough self-confidence to stick to what they believe in.
'Tragic Idol' is a great offering for Paradise Lost fans and with catchy riffs and tempo changes, they may have found their second wind and start making new fans.
Check out the band's website for samples of all the songs on the album. It's well worth dipping your hand in your pocket to treat yourself to a copy.