Dead Can Dance has returned from a 16-year absence with a new album! I tend to be wary of bands or artists that come back from the past to make new music. As many of you know, it can be hit or miss – sometimes, as the saying goes, you can’t go back again. But I am happy to report that DCD have produced a work of absolutely compelling songs and in my opinion, have even surpassed some of their earlier releases.
The music of DCD is often corralled into a World/New Age category. I can see why, but the music is much broader, with elements from Mike Oldfield to Pink Floyd to Chamber Music, while still keeping Eastern melodies and rhythms in the mix. So you need to enjoy music that is not strictly Pop or Rock but flirts with it; and also appreciate other cultures’ music.
Anastasis (which is Greek for resurrection) is an apt title for this collection: if you are a fan of DCD, this new LP sits on equal terms with Aion (1990) or Into the Labyrinth (1993). There are eight tracks, with an average length of about 7 minutes each, and every track is full and rich. I mean, the sound fills the room with keyboards and percussion, the bass is loud and in your face, the density is almost overwhelming. Brendan Perry and Lisa Gerrard have never sounded better; their vocals are as rich as the music. The recording sounds like it was done live in a church – it has that reverb you expect when listening to Gregorian Chants. However, there are no chants this time around – they have divided the music into three categories as I see it: a handful of Middle Eastern-sounding melodies; a Celtic-styled song, and their own 4AD-sounding type material (in a This Mortal Coil vein).
If you are a fan of Dead Can Dance, then you owe it to yourself not to let this one slip by. It has everything you want from them and more – with absolutely world-class production to boot. If you are new to the band and want to try them out, this album will give you a great introduction as well. Check out their website for more information; you can also get digital downloads there if that is your thing.
Release Date: August 14, 2012