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Inpress Review of Untitled #23 Print E-mail
Saturday, 20 June 2009
From InPress magazine, an Australian street music publication.
Inpress magazine - review of Untitled #23 -  by EJ Cartledge
"The Church exists in another universe, I think we can all agree. Concepts of time and money and charts ceased to apply so long ago that the mere mention of commercial success seems dirty somehow. The current music composed and recorded by the band is as seamless and beguiling as you'd expect; the songs mesh and blend and for the most sound utterly enchanting. Steve Kilbey's bass throbs like a gentle pulse, his vocals are forever organic and warm, the twin guitar approach from Marty Willson-Piper and Peter Koppes merge layer upon layer of interweaving chord progressions and seductive lead breaks, and drummer/producer Tim Powles adds considered percussive and tempo touches. It is so intoxicating and straight away satisfying that the listener is struck by its apparent ease. Of course, the reality is very different; Untitled #23 has been laboured over for eons and these four men are still ambitious enough to tour internationally and release new music as often as is humanly possible. Two EPs also accompany this longplayer, well worth the investment by the way - all going to show there is still so much spirit and creative hunger in The Church for plenty more material like this to emerge.

And that is something we should treasure, for this is gold. Cobalt Blue opens in that classic familiar yet mysterious Church vein, all otherworldy themes and bewitching backing before the threatening, urging Deadman's Hand establishes a glorious repeating guitar motif in the style of Chromium from 2002's After Everything Now This. Two other tracks played during the recent national tour then follow Pangaea and Happenstance. Again the structure and instrumentation is delightful and instantly alluring and one is tempted not to progress any further. Spacey beats mix with jazzy runs, ghostly harmonies float around, cellos and harps compliment acoustic and electric guitar patterns and through it all Kilbey's signature vocals underpin the whole gorgeous thing. Other highlights abound on the rest of the album, tucked away in strange corners and behind half-closed doors. They don't need to be teased out; you just have to close your eyes and let the offerings wash over you"- EJ CARTLEDGE
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