Earth - Angels Of Darkness, Demons Of Light Ii
This companion to last year's killer release shows Earth to still be in peak form, and still a band that can squeeze more power out of a couple notes than most. "Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II" does not rest on that classic form, however. These five tracks explore other sounds, using other instruments, to help create a big hypnotic sound that can stand with their best material.
The minimal "Sigil of Brass" uses carefully inserted cello and cymbals to compliment Dylan Carson's ringing, meditative and shifting single notes. The dreamlike, ambling "His Teeth Did Brightly Shine" creates ambient effects from those minimal tones, along with a murky, tin-ny bass line adding a lo-fi feel. "Waltz (A Multiplicity of Doors)" and "The Corascene Dog" build off of the same wall of sound, each offering differing aspects of a sound that blends fusion with psych washes.
The finale is the most adventurous. "The Rakehell" seems based on a slowed down take on the Stones' "Dancing with Mr. D" riff, giving it a sludgy tone but holding on to the original funky feel. Minimalism never sounded so soulful.
"Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II" is brilliant, insular and deliberate but loose and open to what the moment will bring. Earth's use of improvisation and melodic cues has always been stunning, but this one already leaps from their catalog as a highpoint.
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