Normally, upon hearing the beautiful, terror-stricken falsetto wails and moans of my favorite bird, the common loon, I revel and meditate. I’ve even been known to lie prostrate in veneration. Antony and the Johnsons’s new album, The Crying Light, is the exception to the rule. I’ve heard Antony Hegarty’s voice described as crystalline and ethereal, sublime and transcendent, and it’s true, at different moments, the emotive power of his voice and that band shines through.
On The Crying Light, Antony seems more interested in exploring his own personal relationship with the natural world. “Another World” is the highlight and centerpiece. It pictures a post-lapsarian world where nearly everything has been lost.
Antony & the Johnsons’s style fits somewhere among avant-classical and blues, angst and emo, despair, and, at least in “Daylight and the Sun” and “Aeon,” hope.