Eyeless in Gaza

Transience Blues

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An utterly necessary addition to any serious Eyeless in Gaza fan's collection, the 1989 collection Transience Blues collects stray tracks mostly originally released on the flip sides of singles and EPs from 1983 to 1986. For most bands, that description would translate to "failed experiments and songs not good enough to make it onto the albums," but during this period of Eyeless in Gaza's career, their B-sides were quite often more interesting than their A-sides. Intriguing miniatures like "Lilt of Music" and "Tell" have the same newfound interest in dynamics, melody, and arrangement as the duo's more commercial songs from the era, but they keep the experimental bent and interest in minimalism of their earlier records, making them more rewarding and satisfying than either the skeletal early singles or commercial-minded pop songs like "Back From the Rains." Most importantly, the collection includes the relative rarity "Drumming the Beating Heart," an utterly gorgeous two-minute wonder consisting of nothing more than Martyn Bates' remarkably controlled (for him) lead vocal with the unexpected appearance of a church-like pipe organ along with Peter Becker's angelic harmony just over halfway through. It may well be Eyeless in Gaza's finest work, but several other tracks here are nearly as fascinating.