The first album by Elijah's Mantle, an ongoing project by multi-instrumentalist Mark Ellis, is a dark and mysterious mixture of devotional music, ambient susurrations, and a variety of sung and chanted texts ranging from Oscar Wilde and Arthur Rimbaud to selections from the Bible. The music, produced by Dead Can Dance's Brendan Perry and featuring members of the Dublin Philharmonia performing the vocal lines, combines exotic instruments and electronics, without the flashy exotica of the less subtle worldbeat crowd. The whole thing could be terribly pretentious, but somehow Ellis avoids the worst possibilities, and some of his arrangements, like the twining dual vocals throughout "Benedictus," are genuinely lovely. The one downside is the far-too-long "Es la Perdicion," a nine and a half minute semi-industrial grind that resembles Nine Inch Nails' most insufferable moments.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Stewart Mason