Brendan Perry: Ark (Cooking Vinyl)

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Brendan Perry: Utopia
Brendan Perry: Ark (Cooking Vinyl)

As half of Dead Can Dance (alongside Lisa Gerrard), Perry was responsible for impressive sonic landscapes which owed a little to a kind of geographically amorphous "world music" and also to cinema soundtracks.

Here, more than a decade after his previous solo outing, he embarks on gloomy sounding, authoratively-delivered meditations and thoughts over his swathe of synths which have an equally stateless, lonely and remote quality.

Delivering like a less aloof Scott Walker, Perry keeps his dark -- but sometimes soaring -- vocals subservient to the whole sonic texture . . . and in the case of The Bogus Man (some trite observations about politicians) that is perhaps a good thing.

When, however, he goes the whole brooding romantic this really works, as does his more melancholy visions about the state of the world he has physically removed himself from.

At its best this will make you catch your breath for its sheer glacial beauty and contemporary romanticism (Utopia, Inferno), but at other times you wish for more spaciousness between the multi-textured music, and a little respite from a voice which works rather too much of the same territory over the  eight tracks.  

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