Tuesday, 10 April 2012

The 2kDozen 500: #131 - Talk Talk, "Spirit of Eden"

This is one of those albums that crops up on various Best of My Life lists from one decade to the next. I only know "Life's What You Make It" and that's not on here. I think there's a new re-release with extra bits due out soon, but I'm only able to find the source. So I'm gonna throw my ears around it now.

It's sodden with painful emotion to the extent that the words don't quite sound like words. "Eden" has an elemental feel as though the song is howled out to Uriel at the gates of Paradise as his flaming sword spits against a winter tempest. (Ha ha! What the fuck is in my hot cross buns?!) "Desire" is also wandering about in the teeth of this same storm. It sounds as undesirous as any tune I might have heard; thoroughly empty of any zest. The desire only exists as an echo of its former fire, a shadow of its greatest extent. I think he sings "That ain't me, babe": denial heaped on denial.

"Inheritance" feels like something is being turned around in his mind. Something big; too big to be sketched out with the slow accordions and muted bass whorls. "I Believe in You" is another rambling, tremulous thing woven with little clipped loops of choral. Great coal-dark veins of misery, glittering with hope - I imagine them while I listen. "Wealth" sits on a raft of ecclesiastical organ and Mark Ellis sings in molten words about freedom and forgiveness. I don't know if he was a religious man; but he certainly lent in that direction when it came to making music.

Then it ebbs away.

Rating: Rambling out of Eden

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