Interview – Paradise Lost talk ‘Tragic Idol’
With the release today of Paradise Lost’s ‘Tragic Idol’ we thought we’d put up a recent interview between Molten and guitarist Greg Mackintosh where we chat about their thirteenth studio album, influences and playing Hammerfest 2012. Enjoy!
What would you like to say about the new album ‘Tragic Idol’?
I guess it depends if you know a lot about the history of the band or not. If you know about the history of the band it’s quite easy for me to summarise. I’ll just say that if you were a fan of our ‘Icon’ album or more specifically the song ‘True Belief’ then I think that this album is a thing that you will like. If you’re not aware of the band then I will say it’s a kind of a modern retro mix, which is a strange thing to say. It’s kind of a backlash to modern metal techniques and things like that. We’re kind of annoyed about how modern metal sounds exactly the same, you know? It’s all very processed and all the same drum replacement samples.. all the same amps so it all sounds a little generic. I think a part of the thought behind the album was to do something a little different to that… like a backlash. You kind of have to go back maybe 30 years to find a metal album that sounds refreshing at the moment. I guess that was some of the thinking behind it but also on the previous album we had a lot of orchestration and things like that, and on this record we just wanted to strip it right back and come up with an album that was basically the core of our sound. But to do that we had to inject a lot more melody than what was on the previous record.
I see you mentioned before that the album was more influenced by classic and doom metal than anything else. Were there any artists in particular that you took influence from when you were working on the record?
I can’t say really… I know I was listening to a lot of stuff that I listened to when I was growing up which would be anything from early Black Sabbath, Trouble, Candlemass, Saint Vitus through to lots of other things but no one in particular. It was just getting the right feel to the record I guess.
A standout on ‘Tragic Idol’ for me would be something like ‘Theories From Another World’. The riff on it is absolutely heavy and infectious. I’m not going to ask you to pick your favourite as I’m sure it’s impossible but could you talk about maybe three tracks from the album and what makes them standout for you?
Well, you see you picked one that I wouldn’t necessarily go for as I’m more on the whole doom side of the things. I like the really slow stuff. Nick [Holmes], our vocalist really reigns me in a bit and tells me that we need more up-tempo stuff. I guess my favourite songs are ‘Fear of Impending Hell’… I just love the chorus on there. I think it’s a really great, anthemic chorus. I’m really looking forward to playing that one live. There is also ‘Honesty In Death’ that we’ve done a video for which should be released in about a week or so. The reason I like that one is that it’s just Paradise Lost in a bottle, it’s totally the essence of our sound. The last one I would choose is ‘Solitary One’, which is the opening track purely for the fact that it’s utterly miserable!
Moving away from the album, you played Hammerfest recently, just before Anthrax. What was the atmosphere and the show like for you.
It was good! There was a decent crowd there and we’d played there once before a few years ago so we kind of knew what to expect as regards to the venue and everything but when you play that late on, people had been drinking all day so you can see that some people are quite over the top drunk.
It’s one of the first festivals of the year so I’d imagine there were a lot of excited people [laughs].
Yeah! It was a great atmosphere but there were some real sights to be seen if you know what I mean!
Can you remember what the first record was to inspire you musically?
That’s quite tough. There are two different era’s that inspired me. When I first got into music it was punk so I was into bands like Discharge and stuff like that. I think a big turning point for me was hearing Celtic Frost’s ‘Morbid Tales’, their first record.
If you had a chance to go back and be present during the writing, recording and production process for any previously released album. What would it be and why?
Just to be present? Wow… that’s a tough one. It would possibly be the first Candlemass record or the first Black Sabbath record… Actually it would be the first Black Sabbath record because the song ‘Black Sabbath’ is the first doom metal, I think… So it would be kind of interesting to be there just to see what the thought process was because they had no benchmark to come up with a song like that.
Thanks for your time, you can have the final words…
I guess you’ve noticed that Ireland isn’t on the touring schedule for the first part of the tour but that’s because we are releasing the album at a weird time for us. We’ve never really released an album around April before so we don’t have time to do a full European tour before the summer festivals. So what we’re doing is half a tour, then the summer festivals then after that we’ll be coming to back to play everywhere else. We should be in Ireland shortly after that summer festival season.
Here’s the offical video for ‘Honesty In Death’ off new album ‘Tragic Album’ out now via Century Media.
Comments are closed.