Even through the pandemic, it’s been quite a year for Paradise Lost. May saw the release of sixteenth studio album Obsidian, which was then followed up by a successful live stream last month, and now they roll back the clock with a reissue that has been an extremely important part of my life for the last 25 years – Draconian Times.
I mentioned this album was important to me and it is. I remember where I was the first time I saw it, heard it, and felt about it which hasn’t changed in 25 years. I adore everything about this album, from the piano intro on “Enchantment”, the lyrics from “Hallowed Land”, the chilling words of Charles Manson on “Forever Failure” though to the guitar work on “Shades of God”. I could go on and pick a highlight from each track as this is one of those rare times where I have some form of emotional attachment to every single track so it’s never skipped even though it gets played at least once a week.
Now where this release differs from the 2011 Legacy Edition CD, which had a bonus disc that was mainly live tracks, is that the 25th anniversary will also be getting a vinyl repressing for the first time since the original release. This means that I finally get to own a copy rather than make my eyeballs sweat looking at Discogs prices for an original pressing.
Alongside this is a deluxe double CD (which I also ordered) hard book cover, complete with a 24-page artwork booklet including updated liner notes, memories from the band, extras this time around feature four BBC live session tracks, “Master of Misrule” which featured on “The Last Time” single, demos including the unreleased “Last Desire” and even a Sisters of Mercy cover “Walk Away”
I won’t need a simple reminder to know that I will still love this album in another 25 years.
Header image by Anne C Swallow
Draconian Times 25th Anniversary Edition is out December 4th