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PARADISE LOST

Novela

Symphonic Prog


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Novela Paradise Lost album cover
3.02 | 6 ratings | 2 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1981

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Prelude to... (2:03)
2. Masked circus (3:12)
3. Get away! (2:58)
4. Miracle (2:38)
5. Ruins (4:02)
6. Requiem (Part 1) (5:01)
7. Requiem (Part 2) (7:09)
8. Requiem (Part 3) (1:48)
9. The third sword (6:04)
10. Romance promenade (3:36)
11. Passion for fashion (3:32)
12. Terra (5:02)

Total Time: 47:05


Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Hisakatsu Igarashi / vocals
- Terutsugu Hirayama / guitar, vocals
- Mototsugu Yamane / guitar
- Eljiro Akita / drums
- Toshio Egawa / keyboards

Releases information

LP King Record K32Y 2135

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NOVELA Paradise Lost ratings distribution


3.02
(6 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
0%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(33%)
33%
Good, but non-essential (50%)
50%
Collectors/fans only (17%)
17%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

NOVELA Paradise Lost reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ozzy_tom
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars 3rd album of Japanese band "Novela" brought (small) line-up and (bigger) music style changes. Bassist Yoshiro Takahashi left this group to create heavy metal outfit called "Action", together with Mototsugu Yamane who was out of "Novela" soon after "Paradise Lost" was recorded. Surprisingly, in such smaller formation (bassist wasn't replaced until their next album) their music direction switched towards more hard rock/heavy prog approach, compared with more symphonic previous records. However is isn't a bad record at all, just not in pair with "La Songerie" and "In The Night". Songs are evidently shorter and simpler. We can find only one mini-epic - "Requiem", which in fact sounds like 3 different tunes joined together by the same name and part 1, 2 & 3 numeration. Music is rather based on heavy guitars than usual Egawa's acrobatics here. But don't worry, when it's necessary keyboardist won't forget to present us some good leads & solos too.

Let's describe Paradise Lost's songs more precisely:

1. "Prelude To..." - it doesn't sound like "prelude" at all. Just short but "full" song with loud synthesizers and supportive organ & guitars. Vocals sound really OK here. Good start.

2. "Masked Circus" - this strange song begins with lots of quirky synth breaks and unusual, almost disco-like rhythm. Later is much better thanks to hard rockish guitar & organ lead. Solos in the middle are quite strange again, almost Gentle Giant parody...

3. "Get Away!" - another very short song (only 3 minutes) with truly fast...punk-rock rhythm. Lead guitar sounds very repetitive (like in all these disgusting punk-rock "songs") and Igarashi seems to have problem with in-key singing here. The only good thing in "Get Away!" is speedy guitar solo and constant Hammond background. Near the end vocalist scream "Get Away!"(or something like this...) again and again with forced aggression. They tried to mimic "Sex Pistols" or what??!!

4. "Miracle" - another short track, but this time (fortunately!) quite good one. Very basic, catchy melody and Egawa's organ are trademark here. I also like falsetto choruses in the refrain. Electric guitar solo in the middle is another plus.

5. "Ruins" - definitely the best song on "Paradise Lost" and one of the best in Novela's discography! Great double guitars leads, backing synths/organ, occasional sparkling electric piano & aggressive/frightening Igarashi's vocals make it truly fantastic song. I love the solo section which starts with angelic, synth-made chorus. Then powerful, violently ripping Hammond organ solo and melodic, electric guitar one. Brilliant! Perfect example of heavy prog essence!

6. "Requiem: Part 1" - and here comes 14-minutes long "epic". Unfortunately there is nothing to wait for... As I said in the beginning: "Requiem" sounds like 3 completely not connected pieces of music. And not so good music. First part is of the suite is quite boring and "over-sang". The only good fragment is beautiful solo spot with Pink Floydish guitar over lush mellotron waves.

7. "Requiem: Part 2" - nothing so interesting here too. Some mellow electric piano, very calm, almost non-audible organ and relaxing guitars. Fortunately in the middle we can listen to more symphonic section with another mellotron eruptions.

8. "Requiem: Part 3" - the last and shortest part of the suite is the most enjoyable one. Its firt minute consists from pipe organ-like melody (however I'm 99% sure it's still Hammond) with truly churchy atmosphere. After that Egawa switches to delicate-sounding synthesizer and Igarashi & Hirayama start to sing very soft passages (no idea what are they singing about but sounds very nice for me :-).

9. "The Third Sword" - one of the best songs on this record however not very memorable. 6 minutes long performance allow musicians to show more interesting staff with some progressive tempo changes, ripping guitar solos, synth flights and passionate, sometimes screamy vocals. Includes nice, acoustic-piano coda.

10. "Romance Promenade" - after few longer pieces "Novela" comes back to 3+ minutes formula..and fails miserably. It's only lackluster, dull, wannabe romantic ballad. Skip.

11. "Passion For Fashion" - guys wake up and deliver not-so-bad hard rocker called "Passion For Fashion". It's still very generic and doesn't show too much prog elements but it's surely one of more memorable tunes on "Paradise Lost". Heavy guitars dominate almost whole song and leave Toshio's keyboards (mostly some organ rides & synth gimmicks) in the background.

12. "Terra" - this composition show much more symphonic approach. Everything is here: loud string-synthesizers leads, guitar solos, swirling Hammond in the background & clear vocal delivery. Unfortunately melody is a bit diluted and that's why the song isn't too memorable after all.

In general this is okayish album, but I expected something more from Japanese prog rock legend like "Novela". This record repeats some "sins" from 2 previous 2 albums, like for example over-the-top, often high-pitched vocals which can be tasteless for many western countries listeners (but I really "dig" them now to be honest!) and makes some new mistakes, like too short songs, some wrong influences (punk-rock in "Get Away!" - bleeeh!) and pushing Egawa's trademark keyboards in the background, while they should be definitely upfront! However if you already have "La Songerie", "In The Night" and "Sanctuary"(which was recorded later but "Novela" seems to "repair" some of the mistakes from this LP there) you can also check this album. For sure it's worth to be added to your collection after all, just don't expect symphonic prog a la Yes, Genesis & ELP here. But if you like such classic bands as Uriah Heep, Rainbow, Queen or Deep Purple, you should also like "Paradise Lost".

Solid 3 stars from me.

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Send comments to ozzy_tom (BETA) | Report this review (#303286) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, October 11, 2010

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Neo Prog Team
3 stars King Records supported the next work of Novela by releasing an EP containing ''Requiem'', a brand new Symphonic Rock composition.The same track, divided in three parts, would appear a few months later on Novela's third effort ''Paradise lost''.The album was released following the announcement of the departure of bassist Yoshiro Takahashi, who went on to form the Hard Rock band Action!.He would take also guitarist Mototsugu Yamane with him.

Energetic and bombastic Hard Prog was again Novela's proposal and the first few tracks are delivered in short forms of fast-paced Hard Rock with driving guitars and lots of keyboards, featuring complex breaks, high-pitched vocals and powerful rhythmic parts.The sound is mainly based on the angular electric guitars, the few organ waves and the use of synthesizers, which offer a nice pompous edge to the music despite their rather synthetic sound.By the middle the music becomes more complicated and progressive with ''Ruins'' being a nice example of Hard and Orchestral Rock with E.L.P.-like keyboard acrobatics, atmospheric Classical breaks and mascular riffs.The centepiece of ''Paradise lost'' though is the 3-part, 15-min. long ''Requiem'', another strong Symphonic Rock piece in Novela's list of epic compositions.A gentle GENESIS-like intro with a poetic mood will leave its place to the bombastic execution of Egawa on synths and Mellotron, while the second, all instrumental part is a big surprise, sounding somewhere between KAIPA and FOCUS, featuring crying guitar solos, powerful orchestral Mellotron strings and a heavy rhythm section.Third and shortest part is close to the sound of LE ORME and THE NICE with a romantic, Baroque-inspired organ performance by Egawa.The last and propably the best Novela epic composition.The next few tracks show the band returning to its Hard Rock/Proto-Metal roots, showered by lots of symphonic keyboard work, bursting tons of energy through the raw vocals, virtuosic guitar moves and punchy synthesizers.

While ''Paradise lost'' contains maybe the least progressive Novela material to date, ''Requiem'' is possibly one of the best Symphonic Rock pieces created by a Japanese band in the 80's.Recommended for this magnificent track and the high level of energy of the group in the rest of the album.

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Send comments to apps79 (BETA) | Report this review (#1148043) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, March 14, 2014

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