By Steve Weinstein
By Bryan Bierman
By Lindsey Rhoades
By Chaz Kangas
By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Jena Ardell
By Jesse Sendejas Jr.
By Katherine Turman
Wonderfully unpredictable, the Angels of Light sound a bit like a grouchy Eastern European folk band, or the CliffsNotes version of Godspeed You! Black Emperor. Just when their plodding begins to, you know, plod, a tack piano or harmonica surges up and over the edge of the mix to keep hope alive. (If anyone was going to score the Red Army's march toward Berlin, it would be the Angels.) The album's success depends on a great ambient room sound courtesy of Martin Bisi, the guy who recorded a lot of '80s groovy ghoulie music the first time around.
The Angels of Light
Everything Is Good Here/Please Come Home
Gira's move from Calvinism to Protestantism, so to speak, was a tipping-point move; adding a little air to his vision has made it geometrically easier for the rest of us to join in. He's playing chicken with some bad, bad forces, driven by the need to figure out how redemption works and what pain is for. They're the same questions he's always asked, but he's listening for the answers now. Whether Gira's religion is better than Cave's valentine depends on what ails you. Consult your doctor.