Wednesday 01.19.2011 | 11:23 PM EDT
Passed Over: Black Angels + Runaway Train
Taking temporary leave from the current sad-bastard tone ’round here, I’ve locked horns with this buried 6-year-old black diamond of a record and man, have I been enjoying the shit out of it.
Dry and muscular, piquant and dark as a blood orange, The Black Angels are an inarguably contemporary band, yet deeply rooted in late 60′s bombastic blues-rock (Monks, Black Sabbath); minimal basement dinge (Velvet Underground, The Stooges); and post-hippie psychedelic wash (Spacemen 3).
Hell, throw a little of Joy Division’s spastic gloom in there—everyone else is doing it.
Here, try a toke:
Menacing, minimal Moe Tucker tribal drums. Caves echoing twisted, distorted guitars that wrap—no—clench around whomever might be listening. Vocals chilling and arresting as Ian Astbury on his best day (did he have a best day? I think so. Tell me you still don’t sneak away to relish the goth-rock awesomeness of The Cult’s “Love”. Tell me you don’t. I dare ya.)
If TBA were a locomotive, it would most certainly be that massive, soot-skinned demonic monster that John Voigt, feral escaped convict of 1985′s Runaway Train, defiantly surfs atop—a loosed ferocious spirit bearing against frozen Alaskan clement, swiftly and violently, into heroic self sacrifice.
A tale of Shakespearean proportions co-written by Akira Kurosawa, RAT ain’t your run of the mill adventure story. And The Black Angels’ Passover inhabits that f-ugly, menacing, bad ass locomotive. Don’t miss either one…
No beast so fierce but knows some touch of pity.
But I know none, and therefore am no beast.
—William Shakespeare, Richard III
“A thing of beauty is a thing indeed. And these are things that we all need. But ugly things are pretty too. It all depends on your point of view, so get with it, babe”
—Sir Knight Berman, “Get With It”
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