Tales of Faith and Lunacy – Nero Kane (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

I’m not saying that we haven’t been here before, it’s just that Nero Kane’s vision of a sort of apocalyptic wild western landscape where fallen angels and forgotten demons do battle for the souls of the lost and the lunatics, where redemption is sought and souls are sold, is the most starkly realised to date. Sonic pilgrims from Johnny Cash to Tom Waits from Nick Cave to Mazzy Star have gone down these paths before and whilst they documented and detailed the tracks and trails of those journeys elegantly, this dark-psych(o-geographic)  collection is perhaps the first to join the dots and complete the map of this imaginary otherworld.

Lord Won’t Come is a long and lingering opening opus of blasted blues and skewed country, as perfectly irreverent and blaspheming sonic welcome mat as you could hope for, all world-weary vocals and the sound of the warm winds blowing through the dust and detritus of this broken world. Magdalene has echoes of The Velvet Underground’s sprawling wall of noise and Nico’s disembodied vocals scattered across it and I Believe offers a moment of understatement, a collection of brief and chiming guitar licks and shimmering synth washes, space and reflection.

Nero Kane has put together a fantastic album, one which bridges worlds, between the present and the past, the real and the imagined, the faithful and the heretical, like a dystopian steam-punk spaghetti-western soundtrack mixing the smell of incense with the sound of distant thunder a place where just because the protagonist is dressed in white doesn’t mean that he is a hero.

In fact, if someone isn’t turning this soundtrack into a film even as we speak, then there is no justice in the world. But then again there isn’t, we know there isn’t because Nero Kane has just written a whole album about that very idea.

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