ALBUM REVIEW: Paradise Lost – Obsidian

Many consider the British band, Paradise Lost to be the fathers of the Gothic Metal genre. Formed in 1988, four out of the five members have been there since the beginning. This tight-knit group of guys is a prime example of a hard-working band who knows how to stay creative and original. The exploration and determination of this act has led them down some unique roads over the years. After experimenting on albums like One Second (Music for Nations)  and Believe In Nothing (EMI), Paradise Lost got back to their roots in 2015. They embraced their Death Metal background with the release of The Plague Within (Century Media Records) and 2017’s Medusa (Nuclear Blast). Now with the release of their sixteenth record,  Obsidian (Nuclear Blast), their heaviness is being fleshed out with even more distinct devastation.   Continue reading

PODCAST: Episode 90: Nick Holmes from Paradise Lost Discusses “Obsidian”

Ghost Cult had the honor of chatting with Nick Holmes (Bloodbath) of Paradise Lost about their new album, Obsidian (Nuclear Blast Records), due out on May 15th, 2020. Nick shares his thoughts on releasing an album during the pandemic, the creative process of the band, the more sweeping vision behind Obsidian, how the band approached the follow-up to Medusa 2017, how he and Gregor Mackintosh work together on new material, the orchestration on the albums, Nick’s vocal harmonies, the changes in his lyrics over the years, a look back on the 20th anniversary of their debut album Lost Paradise (Peaceville), and much more. Order Obsidian here and check out the podcast: Continue reading

Paradise Lost Shares New Video for “Fall From Grace”, Pre-Orders Go Live

Paradise Lost will release their new album Obsidian, via Nuclear Blast/Crash Records on May 15th, 2020. The band has shared the epic new single and video ‘Fall From Grace’, which you can see below. The band has also launched pre-orders and booked a record release show next fall at The Warehouse in Leeds on 17th September. Watch the new video now! Continue reading

ALBUM REVIEW: Godthrymm – Reflections

As a proud Lancastrian all my life, it pains me to acknowledge the occasional superiority of bitter neighbours Yorkshire. One such area of supremacy is within the realm of Doom Metal: Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride have wielded the White Rose over some of the genre’s most memorable, emotional moments of the last thirty years and the latter’s erstwhile guitarist Hamish Glencross is determined to carry on that sound with his latest outfit Godthrymm. Debut album Reflections (Profound Lore Records) oozes the drama, power, and tragedy of his former band. Continue reading

Bloodbath – The Arrow Of Satan Is Drawn

Despite being established as Death Metal stalwarts, and already perhaps even close to attaining legendary status, the road for Bloodbath has often been seemingly a little bit bumpy. Admittedly a band that wasn’t always the main priority for its various members, over their time Bloodbath has had to lurk in the shadows waiting for busy schedules of to align. With alumni from the likes of Katatonia and Opeth, and more recently Paradise Lost, it has meant live shows are a rarity and album release schedules somewhat inconsistent. However, with Katatonia now on hiatus, it feels like Bloodbath can become a more prominent concern, which certainly seems evident with the fact that The Arrow Of Satan Is Drawn (Peaceville) is quite possibly their most vibrant and strongest effort to date. Continue reading

BLOODSTOCK 2018 Part I – Catton Hall, Derbyshire UK

With people on social media proudly sharing photographs of their recently purchased or newly patched up tents, or cirrhosis-inducing beer supplies during the days and even weeks leading up to the event itself, by the time the big day actually arrives, anticipation for Bloodstock 2018 has already turned into a Christmas-like level of excitement. Continue reading

Paradise Lost To Reissue “Believe In Nothing” Album, Release New Lyric Video

On the heels of a successful launch of an expanded and remastered version of Host, Paradise Lost will now reissue their Believe In Nothing Album, from 2000. Dissatisfied with the production of that album at the time, Believe In Nothing has been remixed and remastered by Jaime Gomez Arellano, and includes new artwork, to bring to bear the bands’ initial vision of the album. They have also dropped a new lyric video for the new version of their track ‘Mouth’. Continue reading

Paradise Lost – Pallbearer: Live at Electric Ballroom, London 

How to best celebrate that Friday feeling? With a night of slow and Gothic Doom of course. The Electric Ballroom in Camden, London, is full to the brim, and it seems the crowd is somehow wearing even more black than usual to celebrate the morbid tones of the UK’s very own Paradise Lost. Continue reading

Rotting Christ – Rituals

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Ever get that feeling that you should have done something much earlier than when you did? That is how I felt when I finally got around to listening to Rotting Christ for the first time via their latest, Rituals (Seasons of Mist). The Greek black metal outfit took me by surprise with this release as I ignorantly always expected a band with such a name to sound like your typical Norwegian black metal (read as: boring). In this instance, I enjoy accepting the mistake I made and cannot stop listening to this thunderous album.

Trying to pick my favorite tracks out of this album proved to be incredibly difficult as every last one carries its own personality and all are memorable. Alas, we start with the opener, ‘In Nomine Dei Nostri’, which literally sounds like a ritual. The opening has thunderous tom hits on the set while vocals are chanted over the top that sound like a call an answer between a shaman and his followers, hailing all of their deities. ‘Elithe Kyre’ may be the best song on all of Rituals. The chorus sections are absolutely flawless. The chord progression of the tremolo guitars on top of the thunderous drumming gives me goosebumps with every listen. The bridge into the solo is equally as awesome as we here some more tribal chanting/drumming before faces get melted by the solo. ‘For A Voice Like Thunder’ is probably the most black metal sounding song on the album (which also features Nick Holmes of Bloodbath/Paradise Lost fame on vocals). This track is just heavy enough at the perfect tempo that there is no need to toss in a zillion blast beats. The guitar leads are also incredibly catchy and I find I whistle them quite frequently.

Rotting Christ has easily earned a new fan with their release of Rituals. I will certainly make myself familiar with their previous work as well. As for this album, it is an absolute animal that is being released on our world that all fans of metal will witness their jaws hit the floor. At bare minimum, I can see this album being Album of the Month for February. As for end of year lists, it is going to be a competitive year, but I have no doubt in my mind that this monster of an album will still be hanging around.

9.0/10

TIM LEDIN

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Paradise Lost – Symphony For The Lost

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Set against a stunning and wholly appropriate backdrop of the genuine Ancient Roman Amphitheatre of Philippopolis in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, Symphony For The Lost (Century Media), a double CD and DVD package, is a culmination of a seed germinated and cultivated over a decade before being actualized in a unique and special moment for a band that has made a genuine and lasting impact on European metal and beyond, as Halifax’ finest, Paradise Lost, achieve a long-held ambition of performing with a full orchestra (the Plovdiv Philharmonic) and the Rodna Pesen choir.

Split into two halves, the first set is the band performing a selection of tracks specifically chosen due to their natural allegiance to classical music – accompanied by the full orchestra and choir – beautifully scored by Levon Manukyan, known for classically reworking Marilyn Manson and Judas Priest along with collaborating with Tarja Turunen.

While Paradise Lost’s music does lend itself to the swells, crescendos and additional trimmings expertly and subtly applied by Manukyan, containing a lot of space, it is particularly pleasing how compatible the partners in this marriage are. While Metallica’s S&M (Vertigo) was a spotted affair, the eight tracks of collaboration here are perfect bedfellows, with ‘Victim of the Past’ from The Plague Within (Century Media) in particular enriched  by the additional melodies and strings that dance over the intro and weave into the tapestry of the song.

‘Tragic Idol’ is a classy opener, and throughout Nick Holmes is in good voice while Gregor Mackintosh’s distinctive melancholic leads intertwine with the strains and descants flowering around him, before we are treated to a jaw-dropping, mesmeric rendition of ‘Joys of Emptiness’; the iconic (sic) track truly resplendent in darkest majesty. The doom-grandeur of ‘Gothic’ is the natural conclusion to a special first half of the show.

The one nagging disappointment is that, as with exposure to any good thing, the desire is, naturally, to want more, and the second half of the set, performed sans embellishments,  leaves you wishing that they had the same orchestral touches and enhancements, particularly as the backing tracks splice in synths, strings and female vocals. It’s a minor quibble, as the band polish off the latter nine tracks with style and panache.

Deliberately eschewing the option of being too dramatic or cinematic with the shooting, the direction is an understated warts-and-all that suits the band, as does Holmes dry self-deprecating between song wit. The overall release is truly completed by the brilliant Bulgarian crowd, as you can feel their love for PL, and their gratitude at witnessing something special, in their honest appreciation and participation.

Paradise Lost is one of Britain’s greatest, most distinctive and influential bands. Symphony For The Lost is a fitting addition to their career and a well-deserved achievement.

 

8.5/10

 

STEVE TOVEY