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Earth

Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II

Southern Lord Records

Redemption. That's what the second half of Earth's opus Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II is about. The first half (including two songs totaling 40+ minutes) was much more apocalyptic. Doom at its finest with plodding rhythms and scorched barren landscapes filled with wandering humans with nothing but the clothes on their backs. This installment, however at least starts off a little less doom and a little more, well, it won't make you feel that the Mayans were right about 2012.

"Sigil of Brass" opens with a guitar plucked so slowly that each note rings out completely before the next one is started. This slightly more hopeful tone is continued through "His Teeth Did Brightly Shine."

Then the quartet (guitar, bass, percussion, cello, and no vocals) finally combines forces for the 13+ minute "Waltz (A Multiplicity of Doors)." I'll just say that I became entranced by the way that all four musicians played off of each other and reeled me into their musical web with their deliberate pace.

Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II is a fascinating listen. They completed both albums in a grand total of two weeks and somehow made them interact with each other by playing off the End Times Doom of the first part with the redemptive hope of the second section. Although both albums are great as stand-alone discs, put them together and you have a call-and-response, doom-and-hope masterpiece. Earth (the band) has proven the Mayans wrong with these albums. Earth (the planet) will be just fine this year.

Southern Lord: www.southernlord.com