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2014 sees James Apollo return to the UK with a renewed sound and new album 'Angelorum'. Released in May this is a fiery work. "I got tired of pretty," says Apollo, "Pretty is a lonely man on a stool. Pretty is sad and alone. I wasn't sad. I was angry."
And not without reason. The initial sessions for the record "Angelorum" were lost in a fire at Minneapolis's Underwood Studios, home of producer Mark Stockert. The band licked their wounds and moved west to Tucker Martine's Flora Recorders in Portland, (Decembersts, My Morning Jacket, Neko Case) added a few members to Apollo's road band and hunkered back down with producer Stockert.
"Angelorum" is an exotic rock and roll record. Vibraphones and flutes dance intermittently with Apollo's cool delivery on the big heated track "White Lines." What could easily be a soft bossanova rallies to anthemic levels on the single "Spinnin." But Apollo is not all shout and swagger. The record's title track, "Angelorum" was just a sign he saw painted on the side of a building in Mexico. "I liked the sound of it. Later our piano player told me what it meant and i couldn't have been more elated." But of course Apollo does not mention what it means. He just liked the sound of it.
Its a lot of strange sentiment, and it fits. "Angelorum" is indicative of Apollo's distinctive talent, and with it's catharsis of fiery anthems and cool, cool delivery, James Apollo is not angry, anymore.
Apollo will be touring with his band The James Apollo Five worldwide throughout 2014.
"Dark delights with a ghoulish air of danger and charming fragility." 4 stars. - MOJO
"A wandering star with beat generation spirit." - Q