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Angels of Light | Live | Preview

SAN FRANCISCO BAY GUARDIAN | HEIDI SMITH

Gira’s new project attracts a broader audience

Michael Gira began Angels of Light in 1998, a year after the death of his legendary dark and disturbing band Swans. While Swans mostly had a cult following, Gira’s new project attracts a broader audience, including die-hard Swans fans. Angels of Light’s current release, How I Loved You wasn’t originally intended as a romantic work, but the love theme arose as Gira collaborated with friends on the album. It’s songs viciously tear your heart out, trample on it, and then gently place it back inside your body, as if it were all just a beautiful nightmare. Gira’s coarse voice – a haunting combination of Johnny Cash and Thurston Moore – soothes you as he croons morbid lyrics about sex and love. He backs up his vocals with sleigh bells, accordion, ukulele, and piano, which add a delicate yet chillingly eerie effect. Angels of Light arouse you to waltz through a cemetery – naked.
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