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Angel and the Dark River

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

Price: £24.93
Only 1 left in stock.
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£24.93 Only 1 left in stock. Dispatched from and sold by Music-Finder.

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Peaceville
  • ASIN: B00002MQQ0
  • Other Editions: Audio CD
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 535,356 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Format: Audio CD
I bought 'Turn Loose The Swans' a few years agoon the strength of its legacy and then pretty much ignored it for a year. Recently I totally fell in love with MDB due to '...The Swans' suddenly striking me as a masterpiece; and thus it occured to me that I should really love 'The Angel And The Dark River'.
But I don't really love it. It's good and has the same soul-crushing, transporting despair that '...The Swans' really captured, though Aaron Stainthorpe has completely dropped the death metal vocals in favour of that mournful wail of his. Since I loved the melancholy aspects of the aforementioned album, I was certain that I would appreciate the transition to a more focused use of the mood but it seems that with the other elements has gone some of the variety that made the despair so much more vivid against the anger and courtly love themes of both earlier MDB albums (the other being 'As The Flower Withers'). This strips 'The Angel...' of some of the natural power of MDB's sound and leaves it with misery and, of course, lashings of doom.
I loathed opener 'The Cry Of Mankind' on first listen, largely because of a bizarre running time of 12 minutes when the actual song lasts no more than seven. 'From Darkest Skies' has an excellent mid-section riff and 'Black Voyage' includes some stunning interplay between the guitar and violin, which plays a major part in many of the songs. 'Two Winters Only' and 'Your Shameful Heaven' are perhaps the strongest songs on the record, the former being so stately and mournful and the latter adding faster and more aggressive elements for the first time in the album.
Wherein might be the main problem with 'The Angel...'. I don't grudge MDB for making slow, long songs but they seem almost too involved and with little variety to pick out moments of magic.
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