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Oscar Winning Dame Over Ambience

The Angelic Conversation
(World Serpent)

Coil is one of those bands that you either love or you hate. They've been around for quite a long time and have built up a huge, rabid following in underground circles. While they have done a lot of remix work for high-profile bands like Nine Inch Nails (and are supposedly going to release an album on Nothing Records sometime in 1999), a lot of their albums are out-of-print and currently the only albums you can buy are on import. The two main members of the group are fierce about creating inventive music on album after album and have explored almost every electronic genre (industrial/experiment/ambient/dance) at some point.

The Angelic Conversation is actually a soundtrack for a 1985 non narrative video film done by Derek Jarman (who Coil also worked with on his film Blue). Although the album contains some sounds that the group has used previously, the album is really stand-alone in terms of mood and it works well as a cohesive piece. The music itself is very minimal, ambient and string based, and it serves as sort of a backdrop to reading of Shakespearean Sonnets read by Dame Judi Dench (well before her recent Oscar win). While it may sound kind of simple, it's all quite beautiful and although you'll probably never find the film at your local video store, the Coil piece stands alone. It's pretty hard to find, and probably expensive if you do see it, but if you're interested in something quite different than usual, it's worth it.

Rating: 7.25