Album Review

Dark Was The Night

Dark Was The Night

by V/A

9 / 10
13th May 2009

Reviewed by Paul Gallagher

This is almost perfect. When a charity double-album comes out filled with 31 tracks from much-hyped indie music stalwarts aiming to promote AIDs awareness, it is hard to say a single bad thing about it. It is just SO GOOD - in both its intention and its content.  

Here is a brief rundown of some of the tracks, shamelessly filled with reasons why you should buy this album:  

One of my favourite bands EVER, Dirty Projectors, appear in the opening track "Knotty Pine" performing alongside one of the glittering heroes of pop's past, David Byrne; Feist and Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard ably cover once-lost folk goddess Vashti Bunyan; Brooklyn-ites Yeasayer appear with an everlasting and slowburning track called "Tightrope"; a guy from The National and Antony cover Bob Dylan's "I was Young When I Left Home"; David Sitek from TV On The Radio takes a break from recording shitty bands like Foals to sing a rather decent song; Andrew Bird covers a song from the Handsome Family fantastically; Bon Iver comes along and contributes two tracks, one solo and one with another guy from The National; composer Nico Muhly lends a hand with an orchestral piece for both the guys from the National; and New Pornographers cover a Destroyer song which could be awkward considering Dan Bejar is in both bands but it isn't.  

Other amazing musicians that might catch your attention with quality songs include: Arcade Fire, Spoon, Iron and Wine, the Decemberists, Grizzly Bear, Beirut and My Morning Jacket - amongst many, many others.  

Sufjan Stevens - of all people - delivers the best song of the lot, singing - along with My Brightest Diamond, and accompanied by members of The National and others - a cover of the Castanets' track "You Are The Blood" which rises and rises into an epic maelstrom of sound that demands to be heard.  

You know, it's a collection of covers, oddities, and odds and ends - but they're all worth listening to, again and again. Go out and buy this album. You too will be amazed!  

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