No Masters in Paradise is an exquisite set of gothic rock lamentations for “a world which dies in the near distance.” The honey-drenched tones move in their own time, the invocations galvanized in a mercilessly compelling timbre. Their heralding is welcome. It feels like what a form of rock music might resemble in a declining empire coming to terms with degradation, a clearer assessment, which is to say dustier but less diluted, one by which its subjects might become better acquainted with themselves: grandiose and pensive, drifting and caroming over the graveyard.
It’s wholly against my type to select the longest track on an album as the feature. Six minutes is several lifetimes worth of material in which to stagnate and strangle, stumble into a dead end at any given moment. But instead it comes across as one of those rare instances when the town crier is just too damn good. Subsumed in the gently ravaged waves, lyrical alternations around the central chorus and the instrumental accompaniment keep the melody vitalized, always partially submerged, branching out alive in well saturated soil.
Hardly is anything ever this thrilling that moves in such deliberate slow motion, nor do tracks often proffer this balance of lumbering and lively. It’s a different kind of beast, class and character. It seems to be pulling from another source, a discarded set of components from the lineage of rock that is ever-present and instantly familiar but hardly ever chosen to fixate upon. Unrepentantly anthemic without the inane or orthodox excesses, you should probably study its habits.
Probably well received by admirers of Wish You Were Here era Pink Floyd, or, of the more common era, Phosphorescent/Matthew Hauk, the last few Cut Worms efforts, and Peace de Resistance’s recent Boston Dynamics.
It feels to me like there’s a zero percent chance this doesn’t end up on vinyl at some point. But for the god forsaken time being, there are 50 very fine looking cassettes up for $7, and it’s the same for the digital album transaction.