Tuesday, March 24, 2020

[Roll Your Own Life] The Music That Shaped Me (Part 18)

Rob Dougan - Furious Angels (2002)

We finally hit the 2000's in my "20 Albums that had an impact on me" thing that was going around Facebook. This one's a bit like one of my previous posts - the one for Bush's Sixteen Stone - where I took a chance on an album with very little knowledge of it, and it turned out to be amazing.

I have to admit, I'm a big fan of The Matrix. I love all of the movies, the anime, the comics, and even liked the first video game (never played the Path of Neo, or Matrix Online). But I guess my first exposure to the music of Rob Dougan was The Matrix. I had a couple of his tracks from the soundtrack albums, and I remember being back in that Virgin Megastore (where we picked up the Bush album) and seeing the rather cool cover for Rob Dougan's album Furious Angels.

I don't know what did it, but I decided to take a chance on it. Maybe it's because it was two discs and the second disc was all instrumental, I figured even if I didn't like the vocal tracks I could listen to the instrumental ones, imagine I'm in the Matrix a bit more, and it would be great music to have on while I was writing.

However, the first disc, the one with the vocals, is just as awesome. I'd not heard Rob Dougan's vocals before, so when the first vocal track, the title track from the album, started up, I was kinda stunned. A strange, gravelly and defeated sound, like an energetic Tom Waits, with lyrics that often sounded like he was spitting them out through gritted teeth.

"It's not like you stayed at my side
Or you called me a priest
You searched through my mouth
To check for gold teeth
You were pawning my shoes as I bled
You left me for, left me for, left me for dead."

Fantastic stuff. With club-like drum machine rifts, mixed with an orchestral score that takes inspiration from Elgar and Chopin, with those gritty vocals. Amazing.

After that, Rob Dougan kinda vanished. He's resurfaced recently with some studio recordings - massive orchestral pieces with choirs. Must check that out.

Stay safe!

No comments: