Dead Can Dance – Just blew me away

Dead Can Dance, also known as DCD, I first heard them on a cable T. V. music  Dead Can Dance Ticketnetwork something like the Loft or Cafe Stop, the song was “American Dreaming” by  Brendan Perry, it was a great Acoustic guitar song with heavy percussion in it. I started researching them after that and bought  the CD Towards The Within. The way they weave Celtic, Germanic, Turkish, Egyptian and African styles with Perry’s  medieval influences I’d never heard of such a powerful style, they just blew me away. They are of ethereal, neoclassical &  Gothic influences. This band would be equally at home in ancient Egypt, on Babylon 5, or in Valhalla. They formed in Melbourne, Australia, in August 1981, by Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry.  Their 1996 album  Spirit Chaser reached No. 1 on the Billboard Top World Music Albums Chart.  Australian music historian Ian McFarlane described Dead Can Dance as, “having an ambient style of world music that Dead Can Dance adconstructed soundscapes of mesmerizing grandeur and solemn beauty…with African poly rhythms, Gaelic folk, Gregorian chants, Middle Eastern mantras, and art-rock.” The band relocated to London in May 1982 and disbanded in 1998.

I heard they were coming to Houston and had to see them. It was at a small venue in a college Auditorium, whereas everywhere else in The World they fill 200,000 seat  Soccer stadiums. Their opening song was “Rakim” and Perry went up to the mic and struck a small hand bell. All hell broke loose, the two synthesizers kicked in with a very heavy electronic rumbling that was rattling my fillings loose. The whole place was vibrating!  Lisa Gerrard was dressed as a Druid High Priestess and she and Perry were trading lyrics back and forth. Perry broke out his Acoustic Guitar and played the great song “American Dreaming.” After a couple more songs I went to get a coke and while standing in line to buy a poster was talking to their tour manager.  I asked him where the group was from, and what language their music consisted of. He told me “A world Music, made up emotions” and  he told me Lisa Gerrard was playing a Yangquin ( which is a Persian instrument, like a steel guitar but played like a Xylophone.)  I went back to my seat for the rest of the show. They didn’t have piles and piles of speakers, or much of a light show but their music was just so unique and seeing a woman fronting a band was very powerful. I’ve read that they’ll be reuniting soon for a world tour. They were one of the most unique entertaining powerful acts I’ve ever seen. I Mean they came into Houston, and they let you know ” They Meant It.”

Joseph Terrazas

Dead Can Dance pic

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