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38. Anthony & the Johnsons – Hope There’s Someone

16/11/2009

41

It’s that voice. Quivering and fragile, warm and treacly, equally hopeful and desolate, it’s still a shockingly novel sound. Then, of course, it’s what that voice is singing. “I’m scared of the middle place between light and nowhere/I don’t want to be the one left in there” pleads Anthony Hegarty like a frightened rabbit rooted to the spot. People have sung darker, more fearful lyrics, but none with as much passion. As Hegarty eviscerates himself across the first half of Hope There’s Someone, the instinct is to avert one’s gaze, but the gorgeous arrangement is transfixing. The second half finds Hegarty emotionally drained and just wailing – a tactic that only serves to make his earlier confessions more heartfelt. Hope There’s Someone is hardly a song for all occasions, but such gory blood-letting is rarely this exquisite.

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