Angels of Light & Akron/Family | Reviewshow-stopping rendition of Bob Dylan's "I Pity the Poor Immigrant"
Understandably pleased with the reception of their tour together last spring, Angels of Light honcho Michael Gira went straight back into the studio with his newest charges. The most spirited posse of all the New Weird Americanos currently populating the underground, Akron/ Family contribute seven songs and back Gira on another five (including their show-stopping rendition of Bob Dylan's "I Pity the Poor Immigrant"). A/F's tracks boast a swagger that was scarcer on the band's 2005 debut. Again, there's plenty of magic to be found but the biggest epiphany arrives in the middle of "Moment," when the band's infectious blend of Beefheart-inspired skronk-funk and delicate Beatlesque pop suddenly subsides and the group's whooping and hollering take over. Their lusty singing adds buoyancy even to Gira's gauntest compositions -- that said, the tumultuous, guitar-strewn racket in "The Provider" makes for quite the freak scene.