I Am A Bird Now – Antony And The Johnsons (2005); Track-by-Track review

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For some, he is an inspirational auteur, others have called him derivative and talentless (I am the former)…

Some listened to this album over and over again, others couldn’t stand to be near it (I am the former)…

Some of us cry when we hear the emotive strains in his voice, others cry out in agony (I am the former)…

There were whoops and cheers when it won the Mercury, others thought Bloc Party was robbed (I am the former)…

Some of us fly high, soar through the sky when we listen, others cannot hear (I AM A BIRD NOW)…

I Am A Bird Now

I Am A Bird Now by Antony And The Johnsons.

(song titles in caps)

Fear, fatalism and insomnia inhabit the piano driven HOPE THERE’S SOMEONE. A crashing piano conclusion contrasts with the reluctant melody.

Like a haunted fairground, dangerous lives move in MY LADY STORY, a musically-industrial complex that has had its apostrophe removed.

A muddle of faint hope and despair splash through and none moreso than in FOR TODAY I AM A BOY. Ivories tickled as brutally as when removed.

MAN IS THE BABY is an open apology to a cruel world, delivered sardonic vitriol and rare self awareness over a simmering cello composition.

YOU ARE MY SISTER is the most beautiful song of all time.

A mournful interlude, like a cremation between funerals, to ask the question, WHAT CAN I DO?

Lou Reed lopes in to play guitar on the accomplished, almost conventional FISTFUL OF LOVE. An upbeat horn section disguises a deeper pain.

Like the changes in our lives SPIRALLING comprises various movements, from dirge to staccato to fearful symmetry. Art rock at its finest.

Morse Code intertwined with a Norse Mode on the simple, understated, instantly forgettable FREE AT LAST. This is no place for filler.

We close on BIRD GERHL, the completion of this Icarusian tale of thwarted ambition and despondent incongruity. Fly, fly away Antony.

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