Paradise Lost – Medusa (Review)

Medusa – Out Sep 1st!

The recent reissue of 1997’s One Second harked back to Paradise Lost’s “experimental” electro-goth era but, although the band has since returned to metal, they are no less experimental today.  2015’s The Plague Within featured the surprise reintroduction of doom/death metal and growled vocals to the band’s modern style and on their latest album Medusa the veteran band continues their increasingly extreme trajectory. This is Paradise Lost’s sludgiest, trudgiest album since 1992’s Shades Of God.

The album kicks off with Fearless Sky, Gods Of Ancient and From The Gallows. All crushing slabs of epic misery with crusty riffing, mournful harmonies and Nick Holmes’ increasingly impressive vocal snarl. Anyone expecting the UK band’s traditional melody and immediacy might find this opening trio uninviting but repeat listens prove rewarding and reveal the kind of compelling emotional depth that is the hallmark of great doom. The entire album follows in this imposingly bleak vein but, as it progresses, the band factor in Type O-style clean vocals and anthemic, gloomy hooks in songs like the stunning title track, The Longest Winter and Blood And Chaos. The skillful pacing and variation preventing the album from buckling under its own miserable weight.

Fans of the band’s earliest albums and tracks like Beneath Broken Earth from The Plague Within will find Medusa very satisfying indeed. Fans of One Second are advised to be patient. Whereas that album offered easy and immediate songcraft, it has proven a shade disposable over the years. By comparison, Medusa is a difficult album to get on with but it’s an uncompromising work of substance that will continue to repay dedicated listeners. It’s another wonderful offering in the stellar career of these fearless, ancient gods.

HMO Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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22 thoughts on “Paradise Lost – Medusa (Review)”

  1. HMO I’m enjoying reading about these artists that I’m not familiar with, in a genre I don’t frequent all that often – and seeing that I have similar reactions (like the easy can lead to disposable, difficult to rewarding) with completely different artists.
    Mind you, most of my go-to artists aren’t ancient Gods, but still, interesting to see the parallels!

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Hey …
        Creatures of the night is in my all time Top 3 Kiss studio albums along with Rock N Roll Over and Alive(ha)
        Lick It Up and Animalize as well esp LIU being the stronger of the two….

        Now u put my thinking cap on about albums I loved but got sick of…
        One of them would be at the time Mr Bigs…Lean into it….
        I bought that right away in 91 by 92 To Be With You was so overplayed I haver not heard it since 92..hahaha
        Another would be Extreme with More Than Words…
        Avoided it until last year when they put the incredible Live album and played Pornograffatti front to back

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Good point, by then I’ll be exclusively listening to U2, Elbow and Coldplay. I’ll jot them in for 2018.

        (Hahaha! Amazing! I trust she was going around sitting on people’s jackets!?)

        Liked by 1 person

    1. It did take a few listens. First couple I thought were a bit meh but then it started to click. Paradise Lost are one of my fave bands anyway so I’m a bit biased! You’re a big fan too, right? I’m sure you’ll love it!

      Like

      1. Yes I am! The Plague Within is one of my fave PL albums. (Together with Draconian Times, Shades of God and Gothic). It’s playing here and so far, a lot of bangers in there to put a smile on my face.

        Liked by 1 person

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