Paradise Lost have always been on time, when it comes to their next record release, approximately every 2 years and here we are with “Tragic Idol” ,their brand new 13th studio release, on our speakers. Let’s get through its interior shall we? As we did for their past two releases “In Requiem” and “Faith Divides Us…Death Unites Us” we’ll give it a try to comment the album, track by track, to get you the most out of it! Here we go…

Opening track “Solitary One” starts off dynamically, in the likes of an “Icon” mid-tempo track (Embers Fire would fit perfect) with quite impressive doomy haunting rhythms and a good flowing piano melody trademark Paradise Lost sound and a great middle section that goes even further in their past.

“Crucify” steps forward to their sound with a faster tempo and Greg’s leads mastering the entire result. Stunning classic Paradise Lost refrain perfect for moshing or singing along with Nick’s melodic lines. Not by chance the first track that was revealed from this album. Great power refrains and strong tempos. One of the picks. Following track “Fear of Impending Hell” strongly reminded me of their last album’s “Faith Divides Us…” titletrack atmosphere and structure. Although, there’s also a strong refrain here as well, this similarity kind of knocked me out for this one. Greg’s solo, though, is outstanding…One of the best moments of this album. Next comes “Honesty In Death” with the classic Paradise Lost logo nicely shadowing everything. From the original gothic metal rhythm sections / leads, to the structures that we all are familiar with, everything is here. Surely a good choice for the album’s first video. Could it be an “Icon/ Draconian Times” b-side maybe? Who knows? Even if so, it surely makes its mark on this record.

Continuing on, we come across to track no.5 entitled “Theories from Another World”…And here is Tragic Idol ‘s top track by far. Raw riffs, hungry Nick Holmes, fast changes, heavy and fast refrain almost black metal-ish…and on top of it, Greg’s trademark solos and bridges… Remarkable and brilliant track. “In this we Dwell” goes on riffy and fast as well, in the likes of old school Paradise Lost sound( Pity the sadness would do well). Some Celtic Frost elements here and there that hadn’t showed up for long, just make it even more chilling to hear them again. Another good fast track. “To The Darkness” follows fast as well with a lot of fast riffing and many classic sounding solos from Greg’s axe. The unexpected doomy bridge that slows it really down could as well be digged up from “Shades of God” sessions, but I can’s see anything wrong on it. Although, a bit weaker than the previous fast ones, a nice track as well.
Next comes the album’s titletrack “Tragic Idol” a mid tempo track with the traditional rhythmic structures and Nick’s great deep clean voice on top of it colouring the music and a quite obvious “Symbol of life-era” refrain making it a perfect sing along for concerts. Adrian Erlandsson’s drum fills dominate the beginning of track “Worth Fightiing For” as do during almost all choruses. A weird dark track with a mid tempo feeling, quite mystical and different from the usual Paradise Lost sound. Quite interesting the least. Final track “The Glorious End” goes hand in hand with its title. A mid tempo doomy riff reminding me of the closing track of “Paradise Lost” album (Over the Madness) a few years ago. Smashing melodies and great chilling atmosphere surely make this one a great choice for the album’s closing track .

Now that we captured the entire album track by track, there’s not much to say for the production of Tragic Idol, as the name Jens Bogren nowdays just stands synonymous with perfection and success. Here’s the case once more, perfectly balanced mix and great massive sound naturally caressing our ears. On the other hand, Paradise lost decided to use artist’s Valnoir sketches for Tragic Idol and also brought back the familiar old logo. A big change in style, with a trademark brought back…quite interesting the present colliding with the past can’t you say? We also believe it so…

An overall balanced record, Tragic Idol, does its work perfectly with all songs, baring the average demands of any Paradise Lost fan or simple listener of the band. It does not experiment that much, but sounds from the heart with a bit of every era this band has experimented throughout the years, giving emphasis on their 1992-1995 and 2005-2009 releases. A quite heavy and well balanced album by the genre’s originators, with everything you could expect from them, since their return to roots.

Track List Line Up
01.Solitary One
03.Fear of Impending Hell
04.Honesty in Death
05.Theories from Another World
06.In This We Dwell
07.To the Darkness
08.Tragic Idol
09.Worth Fighting For
10.The Glorious End
Nick Holmes – vocals
Greg Mackintosh – lead guitar
Aaron Aedy – rhythm guitar
Steve Edmondson – bass
Adrian Erlandsson – drums