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It might have come to your notice that I'm not a regular poster of love and understanding, which you'll just kinda have to get used to. I will however, now and again, have bursts of creativity and if it was to please the massed hordes, who chose to visit this insignificant page, to supply some input on the direction and type of music you would like to sample (before going out and buying yourself a copy) this little communication will not have been in vain.

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Despite Being Slightly Inconsistent….Still A Worthy Début.

Putting early punk backgrounds and the like behind them, Brendan Perry and Lisa Gerrard created a striking landmark in early '80s atmospherics on their first, self-titled creation. Bearing much more resemblance to the similarly gripping, dark early work of bands like Joy Division, The Cocteau Twins and The Cure than to the later fusions of music that would come to characterize the duo's sound, Dead Can Dance is as Goth as it ever gets in many places. Perry and Gerrard's wonderful vocal work, Brendan’s rich, warm tones and Lisa’s unearthly, multi-octave exaltations, are already fairly well established, but serve different purposes here. Thick, shimmering guitar and rumbling bass/drum/drum machine patterns practically scream their sonic connections to the likes of Robin Guthrie and Robert Smith, but they still sound pretty darn good for all that.
When they stretch that sound to try for a more distinct, unique result, the results are astonishing. Gerrard is the major beneficiary here. "Frontier" explicitly experiments with tribal percussion, resulting in an excellent combination of her singing and the rushed music. Then there's the astonishing "Ocean," where guitar and chiming bells and other rhythmic sounds provide the bed for one of her trademark, and quite, quite lovely, vocal excursions into the realm of glossolalia. Perry in contrast tends to be matched with the more straightforward numbers of digital processing and thick, moody guitar surge. The album ends on a fantastic high note, "Musica Eternal," featuring a slowly increasing-in-volume combination of hammered dulcimer, low bass tones, and Gerrard's soaring vocals. As an indicator of where the band was going, it's perfect.

Then continuing in the vein of the self-titled debut but more clearly plunging into a wider range of music and style, Garden Of The Arcane Delight is the clear transition between the group's competent but derivative Goth start and something much, much more special. Opening track "Carnival of Light" captures the blend at play, with rolling drums, dulcimer, processed guitar and more creating a swirling, evocative mix of sound at once new and old. Gerrard's simply lovely vocals are further icing on the cake. "Flowers of the Sea" is another similarly entrancing effort, simpler in arrangement but no less hypnotic. The remaining numbers, "The Arcane" and the wordily-entitled "In Power We Entrust the Love Advocated," follow the first album's general pattern -- Perry is again a fantastic singer, but the songs themselves aren't as memorable, embracing doomy goth sonics without adding much to the overall sonic canon.

Taken from the CD reissue to MP3 @ 320kbps

Track List
1.       The Fatal Impact
2.       The Trial
3.       Frontier
4.       Fortune
5.       Ocean
6.       East Of Eden
7.       Threshold
8.       A Passage In Time
9.       Wild In The Woods
10.   Musica Eternal

1.       Carnival Of Light
2.       In Power We Trust The Love Advocate
3.       The Arcane
4.       Flowers Of The Sea

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