Angels and Demons,
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This review is from: Trouble With Angels (Audio CD)
Less polemic than the rather fine Anthems for the Damned and possibly better for it. This follows suit however as far as quality is concerned, being as good as the last 3 records prior, but similar to The Almalgamut in tone. There are just 10 good to excellent songs, no sub-dance/goth/industrial closing dirges and most tracks are pretty catchy.
Opener, 'The Inevitable Relapse' is hard to like at first as it's quite angry and pummeling, akin to their industrial roots, but it becomes quite a catchy, mantra-like tune in time. Still, it's not the best on offer here. 'Drug Boy' is one of the best. It's hard, heavy, dirty and quite beautiful and uplifting once the chorus is reached, soaring vocals and instruments used to great effect. 'Absentee Father' follows suit but to a slightly lesser effect. As does 'No Love' although that employs slightly more balladry, despite it rocking at a pace in places. 'No Re-Entry' is another belter. It's a ballad of sorts, dripping with melancholia and a near-perfect chorus.
'Down With Me' is a perfectly passable, if usual 'verse/chorus' track. The chorus however draws it above the ordinary and into the 'very good' category. 'Catch A Falling KNife' is ok, no cigar with yet another good chorus. The title track is as 'Down...' was in quality and effect. And 'Clouds' is much the same: not perfect but very well done. It's with the slightly less powerful (or less over-produced) version of 'Fades Like a Photograph' where the album returns to and finishes on a high. At first it pales in comparison to the version from the 2012 soundtrack but after a while the chorus becomes so contagiously beautiful that the 2 versions seem interchangeable. If you want a bit of oomph, try the 2012 edit. If you want a more reserved version, go with the album edit. Either way it's a great song.
Another very pleasing, if not groundbreaking, piece of work from Partick et al. It seems that the ideas and songs keep on coming after the long break between The Amalgamut and Anthems for the Damned. Here's to looking forward to Gurney and the Burning Books (unreleased at time of writing 05/2012).