Uncut - 8/01, p.873.5 stars out of 5
- "...A shimmering, widescreen sound..."
Alternative Press - 6/01, p.764 out of 5
- "...Moody, layered, acoustic based tunes topped with Michael Gira's heartfelt vocals....Very moving...'
Magnet - 6-7/01, p.78
"...Some of the most thoughtful and though-provoking songwriting around..."
CMJ - 4/23/01, p.4
"...A collection of love songs that's both beautiful and fret-filled..."
Mojo (Publisher) - 6/01, p.96
"...An uplifting, even redemptive experience..."
NME (Magazine) - 9/15/01, p.397 out of 10
- "...It's goth...beautiful arranged and in very huge spaces of time....basically, Gira and his angels are Godspeed You Black Clothing..."
Angels Of Light includes: Michael R. Gira (vocals, acoustic & electric guitars); Christoph Hahn (electric guitar, lap steel guitar); Birgit-Cassis Staudt (accordion, melodica, piano, keyboards, background vocals).
Principally recorded at Excello, Brooklyn, New York; Spa Studios, New York, New York.
Personnel: Michael Gira (vocals, acoustic guitar, electric guitar); Bliss Blood (vocals, ukulele, musical saw, background vocals); Siobhan Duffy (vocals, background vocals); Christopher Hahn (electric guitar, lap steel guitar); Kid Congo Powers (electric guitar); Thor Harris (dulcimer, hammer dulcimer, piano, background vocals); Birgit Staudt (accordion, melodica, piano, background vocals); Larry Mullins (Farfisa, vibraphone, glockenspiel, drums, castanets, tambourine, timpani, sleigh bell).
Audio Mixer: Doug Henderson.
Recording information: Excello, Brooklyn, NY; Mini-Moose, Brooklyn, NY; Moose; Spa, New York, NY.
Editor: Doug Henderson.
Arguably Michael Gira's finest work outside of his pioneering noise band, Swans, HOW I LOVED YOU is an atypically low-key, at times downright beautiful album blending acoustic guitar, piano, accordion, banjo, and quirky orchestrated passages underneath Gira's conversational vocals. One of the centerpiece tracks is called "Song For Nico," and comparisons to classic Nico albums like THE MARBLE INDEX and DESERTSHORE are not far off the mark. Serge Gainsbourg circa HISTOIRE DE MELODY NELSON is another musical touchstone: while Gira's album is nowhere near as musically lavish, a similarly uneasy mood of queasy eroticism, dread, and languor runs through tracks like "Jennifer's Sorry," "New City in the Future," and the 12-minute epic closer, "Two Women." Fans of the more aggressive aspects of Swans might be somewhat disappointed with the album's generally placid mood, though the sometimes disturbing lyrics connect HOW I LOVED YOU to Gira's more transgressive works.