Earth - Angels Of Darkness, Demons Of Light I
Drone maestros Earth continue their evolution from one extreme to the other with Angels Of Darkness, Demons Of Light I, an album as dreamlike as the seminal Earth 2 is heavy, and a distinct refinement on 2008’s rather excellent The Bees Made Honey In The Lion's Skull. Here the songs are longer, more drawn out and weightier than on the predecessor, with the ensuing result being they are able to grow and develop into these magnificent, meditative monoliths that shut down all brain function and lull the listener into the perfect state of relaxation.
The flow of Angels Of Darkness ... as a single entity helps to cement this effect, the album becoming an hour long trip on to the sparse open plains of the American Midwest with nary a soul to be seen as the gathering gloom of dusk engulfs the landscape. Gentle cyclical guitars flow around almost under-played drums, whilst drones and distant cellos slowly flit around the edges of consciousness in a manner that heightens the dark feelings that bubble just under the surface throughout. Earth have a wonderful sense of poise combined with a deft touch at controlling the pace of the music, never letting it slide into petty boredom or needless repetition.
This is folk music slowed right down and dissected to its most minimal of elements, and as such Angels Of Darkness, Demons Of Light I is not an album in keeping with today’s fast-paced society where the three minute pop song rules and attention needs to be grabbed within 30 seconds; instead Earth have crafted a beautiful escape from this mania, one admittedly many will find stupefying dull upon a cursory listen, but dig a little deeper and a hidden gem of blissful escapism emerges.