So this isn’t exactly a new release, having come out at the end of January, but I’m extremely disappointed in myself that it took me this long to get around to listening and reviewing Paradox’s latest album, “Before Sunrise / After Sunset,” because this is the first album in a long, long time I would rate a perfect 10/10.
I’ve been a fan of Paradox since the 90s, and the best thing about this band is that, though they have evolved and have such a wide range of styles, they still have an underlying unique “flavor” that you can hear a song and instantly recognize it as them, even to this day. Even after being signed to GMM Grammy’s Genie records branch for a while now, they never let going major greatly affect their music, and I really respect that. This album contains singles dating back to 2013, and as such, has a whopping 22 tracks on it! Not only do you definitely get your money’s worth for this release, but with such variety in their musical stylings and unique, poetic lyrics, there is literally something for everyone in this album.
Fan of your staple love songs? Paradox has plenty of those.
Looking to express your feelings to someone? Check out “พรุ่งนี้ / Proong Nee (Tomorrow),” a nice song pledging allegiance to a relationship, no matter how things may end up later down the line.
Nursing a broken heart? Try “ห้องดับจิต / Haung Dup Jit (Morgue),” “เพดาน / Pay Dahn (Ceiling),” or “ขี้เมา / Kee Mao (Drunkard).”
Feeling bitter about a breakup? It’s quite satisfying to shout out along with “ไม่มีเธอ (กล่องดวงใจ) / Mai Mee Tur (Glaung Duang Jai) [I Don’t Have You (Heart-Shaped Box)].”
Or what if you’re thinking back in melancholic fondness on a past relationship that didn’t work out? Then there’s “ฤดูฝน / Reudoo Fon (Rainy Season)” and “จดหมายจากวันวาน / Jot Mai Jahk Wun Wahn (A Letter From Yesterday).”
Love songs not your thing? Are you more interested in gritty social commentaries? Paradox has that too, with their heavier-sounding “มิสไซล์ (โรงงานผลิตความเกลียดชัง) / Missile (Rohng Ngahn Plit Kwahm Gliet Chung) [Missile (Factory of Hate)],” in which they contemplate the state of the world, their songs “มาโซคิสม์(หยดเทียนแห่งความปรารถนา) / Masochism (Yot Tian Haeng Kwahm Bprahttanah) [Masochism (Dripping Wax of Desire)]” and “ปรสิต (Parasite),” which comment on the state of society and how complacent and distorted it has become, or there’s “The Game,” which compares life to different aspects of playing a video game.
Perhaps you’d rather listen to more motivational songs? Paradox has you covered. There’s the slower song “ปีก / Bpeek (Wings),” which very artistically portrays the melancholy and longing in the lyrics about struggling desperately to achieve your dreams, or the songs “รถไฟขบวนแห่งความฝัน / Rot Fai Kabuan Haeng Kwahm Fun (Train of Dreams)” and “วันใหม่ / Wun Mai (A New Day),” urging people to follow their dreams and not give up. In the track “บะหมี่กึ่งสำเร็จรูป / Bamee Geung Sum Ret Roop (Instant Noodles),” the band uses a funny comparison, reminding us that life will never be as easy as making instant noodles, but we shouldn’t let that discourage us, and lastly, the song “หรรษาราตรี / Hunsah Rahdtree (Pleasant Night)” invites listeners to chill out, forget their worries to the music, and dance their sorrows away.
Any fan of this band knows they have their fair share of silly, nonsensical songs for people who don’t want to listen to love or how the world is falling apart, and this album includes such gems as “ดาวเสาร์ / Dao Sao (Saturn),” a song about wanting to quit a boring, monotonous life and move to Saturn, or “กินเนื้อนางเงือก / Gin Neua Nahng Ngeuak (Eating Mermaid Meat),” a song about not wanting to grow old, so they’re killing and eating a mermaid out of superstition. The completely indescribable “หลุมศพปลาวาฬ / Loom Sop Bplah Wahn (Whale Grave)” has both unusual, unique lyrics and a very visually interesting music video to go with it. Lastly, my favorite song on the album, “โป๊ะเชะ / Bpoh Cheh (Heck Yes),” is a funny, crazy song in classic Paradox style for anyone who has found themselves completely incapacitated and spouting gibberish when trying to approach the object of their affection.
In addition to these songs, the album also includes a very Paradox-style cover of Billy Ogan’s famous 1990’s hit, “ลาออก / Lah Auk (Quit),” an anthem for anyone who hates their job, and the song “ลอง / Laung (Try),” which was written for and used as a commercial for Exit brand face and hair care products, but still has uplifting, motivational lyrics that allows the song to stand on its own.
Honestly, and I’m not just saying this because I’ve been a long-time fan and went into this album expecting it to be good, but there is not a single musical composition or sound aspect on this album that I felt should have been changed or could have been better. There’s not a single track that felt like it didn’t belong on the album. Everything was cohesive and definitely had Paradox’s signature style. There’s no songs with lyrics you’ll get bored of because it’s the same shallow lyrics rehashed and reused by so many major label artists, each song has Paradox’s unique sound in both music and poetic lyrics that paint vivid pictures of feelings and emotions. I definitely don’t say this often, but… this album is perfect. 10/10. With such variety; an awesome mix of harder songs, bouncy energetic ones, and slower more ambient rock, and a balanced combination of happy songs, sad songs, angry songs, silly songs, and everything in between, there is literally something for everyone in this release, and if you are a rock fan at all, you will not be disappointed.
If you want a hard copy of your own, you can purchase the genuine thing here from eThaiCD.com, or it is available for digital download on iTunes as well. Please support the artists and acquire your music legally 🙂