Wednesday, February 18, 2009

On Earth As It Is In Heaven

On Earth As It Is In Heaven is Angel's 3rd album from 1977 and some would say their overall best. I tend to disagree with that on one level and that is the woeful production values applied here, otherwise it would have been their best. This marks the last album with Mickie Jones who was Angel's bass player since 1974. It was produced by Eddie Kramer (shame on you Mr. Kramer for the production of this album) and recorded in an actual castle in the Hollywood Hills. After releasing 2 albums of progressive styled rock with Greg Guiffria's keyboards driving the songs, on this release Punky Meadows started contributing riffs that became the framework for more straightforward glam rock and powerpop. The closing 2 numbers Cast the First Stone and Just a Dream still nod heavily to their previous work but songs like That Magic Touch, Telephone Exchange, and You're Not Fooling Me were efforts at cracking the top 40 at the time. Catchy power pop that would be the band's new direction with their follow up effort, White Hot. I don't think there is a dud on this album, although some songs are better than the others. For flat out rockers you can't go wrong with Can You Feel It, White Lightning and On the Rocks, some great stuff. 4 of the album songs went on to become concert favorites, the 3 rockers and Telephone Exchange. Some complain that the album has no direction but I have to disagree. This is an album where Angel were testing the waters of AM radio and looking for that big hit while still treading in the deep waters with their early progressive rock styling. I remember buying this on LP when it first came out and playing the crap out of it. Angel were supposed to be the complete opposite of KISS at the time(even though they were similar) and this album is way more adventurous than anything KISS has ever attempted. This is a 9 out of 10 record it is that good despite the horrible production. For better or for worse, Angel was quite influential in their own way, particularly on the glam metal boom of the 1980s, and represent a kind of missing link between keyboard-driven hard rock bands of the ’70s such as Uriah Heep and ’80s acts like Poison.

White Lightning
Cast the First Stone
Buy It

Funny Toon