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They'll Come, They Come

  Immanu El  

And the Sound Records

Release Date:
Reviewed by:
  Brett Spaceman  

And how we've been waiting for this one. Finally, finally they came and delivered unto us the debut album of Sweden's Immanu El. There will be few better releases this year.

I wonder how many people, like myself, make a point of visiting the Cathedral each time we are in a new city? The experience is rarely surprising, yet such buildings remain captivating and ever so slightly humbling, whatever your persuasion. They'll come.. is structurally odd and hardly original yet somehow all the more enchanting for it. Steeped in melancholy, it offers hope and solace by way of the airy, uplifting deployment of keys, guitars, and vocals.

We begin with Under Your Wings I'll Hide, just short of the eleven minute mark and every bit as ambitious as its duration. Personally, I'm far more interested in the pieces that follow. I would stop short of declaring Under your wings… generic, but for post-rock audiences it is pretty standard fare. What is far less typical for the genre is the ability to record and assemble a satisfying full album. Here Immanu El triumph in Excelsis.

Immanu El work best with their power of restraint. Only Astral Days meanders unsatisfactorily. Home reveals the gospel essence of the band despite its languid, playful exterior. The breathtaking White Seraphs Wild finds the target Under Your Wings… arguably overreached. Kosmonaut is a lovely piece of misdirection. Panda and its reprising companion piece I Know You So Well are pre-known, re-worked and beloved of existing fans. Panda, something of a signature tune for the group, is actually a re-working of a track called North Port, by peer band Sanchez Is Driven By Demons. The original is a far more processed affair. Completing the circle, I Know You So Well is another take on a Sanchez song entitled…Panda.

There are quasi-religious undertones to They'll Come.. hitherto unnoticed by critics. These will be apparent to anyone who knows the origin of "immanu el". I am of the opinion that to explore this avenue might easily detract from the music. Let us just say this - They'll Come, They Come is the kind of record that makes you want to recreate the Sistine Chapel as an ice-sculpture and paint the ceiling with rainbows.

As the quite perfect In Valleys draws the record to its close, comparisons with the hushed, hymnal vocals of Gregor Samsa's Champ Bennett cannot be avoided. Yet these Swedes could cite a host of geographically closer peers, not least ef, Logh, and the aforementioned Sanchez. One suspects these guys could soon be looking toward a certain lauded Icelandic act for their next reference point.

Aim high Immanu El. Heavenward and under your wings we'll fly.

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