Dead Can Dance

Seventeen years and nine studio albums all come together here to give an overview of this band’s career. Fans of, and newcomers to, the works of Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry, should give this some attention. If you’re unfamiliar, you’ll get a good schooling in a duo who’ve given music an innovative contribution like no other. Their songs range from the purely instrumental, using instruments found around the globe, to stunning vocal displays from each of the two. Perry’s almost Jim Morrison-like baritone delivers his words with a theatrical flare in contrast to the rich exquisiteness behind those of Gerrard. Her improv-style lyric-less vocals go from tribal wails to throaty murmurings in a way no one could mimic. The two-disc, 26-song collection takes a chronological trip through their repertoire, showing their diversity. From their early, more tribal/experimental beginnings, to the African sounds heard in "Bird,” to the Middle Eastern voice and beats in "Cantara,” they’ve often been categorised in the world music genre, but that’s not telling the whole picture. There is something in their music that appeals on a level that is beyond our comprehension. The informative liner notes are of the opinion that DCD "[didn’t] provide a sense of nostalgic escape into bygone ages,” but I disagree. The music does take you to other places and other times — that is their allure. If you’re a fan already, this will put their finest works conveniently in one collection, as well as 1998’s "The Lotus Eaters,” previously released only on their box set.