Vulture Overtures: Songs from An Hymnographer
-INTRODUCTION- After a two year silence, a new release by Eric Vain beckons, tugs and rips at your heart. The follow up album to "In Best of War & Love 2004.2007" is brilliantly titled "The Vulture Overtures: Songs From An Hymnographer". With a clever twist of genius, Eric Vain spins an epic sensibility and contagious sound that transcends emotional defeat and sacrifice. The listener is inspired with a whole new world of loss, pain and retribution. From beginning to end, Vain has vocally and musically created yet another unforgettable ghost. -ALBUM REVIEW- The Vulture Overtures: Songs From An Hymnographer For pain is the sacrifice when love is the refuge. For conviction is the abhorrence when deity is the shelter. Eric Vain is not content with mere heartbreak. He'd much rather carve his soul to pieces and somehow make it poignant, apocalyptic and improbably danceable. With The Vulture Overtures, Vain serves as tour guide across an arc of emotional destruction that goes down about as easy as a crown of thorns. He leads his listeners through the twists and turns of a dubious path toward uncertain redemption without sidestepping the lust, sleaze, torment and loss he encounters along the way. Vain's beautiful arrangements and lyrical gifts permit him to tackle deeply unpleasant - yet universal - emotions with the honesty of someone who isn't afraid to admit that failure IS an option. From the first accusatory strains of the opener, "Gone Madly", Vain is ready to throw down and no one - not even family - is getting off lightly. The anger is so raw and the disappointment so ready that even he pauses (Hey, wait/I need a moment here) before plunging forward into the apocalyptic organ pumps of "You've Been Reckoned." - a very merry dance of doom. With this album, Vain has created a deliriously demented saga that spirals through the deepest recesses of base desires. "The Ballad of Jewanda Fay" flirts with Freud with it's leering, Electra-tinged saga of crippled emotions. Girl meets Boy/Girl falls in love with Boy/Girl loses Boy ... because of her suffocating attachment to her viper of a father. There are no happily ever afters in Eric Vain love stories. Jewanda's heartbreak, despite her horrific incestuous entanglement, is palpable in the pathetic beauty of her final cry: 'I'll never forget his name'. Her refrain echoes with the earnest, lasting pain of lost love. Vultures' peek into the galleries of Vain's dark heart brings forth the sleazy circus shuffle of "The Real Suffering", the beauty of hopelessness in "Never Will We Be Forever" and the unwinnable war for supremacy among love, forgiveness and mortality in "Regression." But there is cruelty here and Vain reserves the worst of that cruelty for himself. "Come 'On" is an entreaty for a joy out of reach. The obstacle? A Christ-like loverman who swallows any chance of reaching righteous light. Here is Vain's softening of a sort - "24 Hours 17 Minutes Revisited" is an admission of weariness hung from the hooks of celestial harmonies. In the same vein, "In the Early AM" is a mournful triumph of a song - a paean to wistful and willing self-delusion laid bare in the stark beauty of it's simple arrangement. Vain leaves us with "In Tongues Thee Farewell", a snippet of a closer where it is impossible to determine if he's made it through his soul-searing inferno or simply tossed himself backwards into the abyss. With Eric Vain, redemption is no guarantee.