music written and made while mourning a death makes such a powerful statement with the most personal of subject matters. so many times i find myself speaking of how i thoroughly enjoyed the arcade fire’s funeral, only to think later of how perverse it is to say something like that. the same dilemmas seep in when i listen to midnight masses, a collaboration between autry fulbright from dragons of zynth and jason reece of … trail of dead. fulbright had left brooklyn for his hometown in atlanta to spend time at the bedside of his father until he passed away, after which he traveled to austin to seek solace and comfort among his friends at …trail of dead. it was there that songs like “heaven” emerged, with autry’s grief buried deep under the voices of the gospel choir. it’s a treatment that never fails to tug at my heart, an art that the likes of damon albarn have mastered (“tender” and “don’t get lost in heaven/demon days”). the choir treatment lifts the song to a certain level of universality, but the real feelings of loss and mourning remain fulbright’s alone.
the heaven 7″ is currently available only on tour, although a digital release is slated for march. look out, too, for an ep this summer and a full length later in the year.