Angel (Massive Attack song)

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"Angel"
Single by Massive Attack
from the album Mezzanine
Released 13 July 1998
Format CD, 12'', cassette
Recorded 1997–98 at Massive Attack and Christchurch Studios, Bristol
Genre Trip hop, electronica, electronic rock
Length 6:19
Label Virgin Records
Writer(s) Robert del Naja, Grantley Marshall, Andrew Vowles, Horace Andy[nb 1]
Producer(s) Neil Davidge
Massive Attack singles chronology
"Teardrop"
(1998)
"Angel"
(1998)
"Inertia Creeps"
(1998)
Music video
"Angel" on YouTube

"Angel" is a song by the British trip hop group Massive Attack. It was released on 13 July 1998[1] and is the third single from their third album, Mezzanine, and the tenth single overall. The song samples the The Incredible Bongo Band song, "Last Bongo in Belgium".

Background and composition[edit]

30 second sample of "Angel", starting from the entry of the guitar crescendo. "Angel" shows the group's more guitar driven sound that was described in an Allmusic song review as "perhaps the darkest, heaviest song Massive Attack has ever recorded."[2]

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Daddy G described the song as "[starting] something we've got to finish. It was a much bigger thing than any member of the band."[2]

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Angel" features Daddy G in a car park. He is walking to the exit when Robert del Naja, Andrew Vowles and Horace Andy[clarification needed] appear behind Marshall. They gradually get closer to Marshall, causing him to feel intimidated. More people start following him, which causes him to run outside the car park until he reaches a fence and therefore cannot go any further. As he turns to face the people chasing him, they stop and face him. He then runs towards the people that followed him, which causes them to run away.[3]

The video has had over 7 million views on YouTube.[3]

Use in popular culture[edit]

"Angel" was featured in the 1998 film π and appears in its soundtrack, and in 2000, the British film Snatch. Brazilian band Sepultura's cover of "Angel", from the special edition of their 2003 album Roorback,[4] was featured in the second episode of the Fox series The Following. Angel has also been covered by mathcore band The Dillinger Escape Plan, for their iTunes only EP, Plagiarism. The song was also used in the 2004 film The Flight of the Phoenix[1]. In the 2005 psychological thriller Stay, https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stay_(2005_film), Angel was used in the provocative & emotionally disturbing strip club scene. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0371257/soundtrack?mode=desktop More recently it was used in the close of the Burn Notice episode All or Nothing. Also used in West Wing episode Commencement during the club scene. Recently, this song was used in the e4 TV series 'My Mad Fat Diary' when main character Rae breaks up with boyfriend Finn and she sets fire to a poster of a woman wearing lingerie.

Reception[edit]

Reception for the song was positive. Amy Hanson of Allmusic describes the song as "While the beat here is slow, druggy, and deep, what ultimately drives Angel is the wall of guitars that are reminiscent of a very early Cure".[2]

Track listing[edit]

No. Title Length
1. "Angel"   6:19
2. "Angel (Radio Edit)"   5:24
3. "Angel (Blur remix)"   6:21
4. "Angel (Mad Professor remix)"   6:15
5. "Group Four (Mad Professor remix)"   7:51
Total length:
32:10[1]

Personnel[edit]

Massive Attack

  • Robert Del Naja – producer, arrangements, programming, keyboards, samples, art direction, design
  • Grantley Marshall – producer, arrangements, programming, keyboards, samples
  • Andrew Vowles – producer, arrangements, programming, keyboards, samples

Additional personnel

  • Neil Davidge – producer, arrangements, programming, keyboards, samples
  • Horace Andyvocals
  • Angelo Bruschini – guitars
  • Jon Harris, Bob Locke, Winston Blisset – bass guitars
  • Andy Gangadeen – drums
  • Dave Jenkins, Michael Timothy – additional keyboards

Recording personnel

  • Jan Kybert – ProTools
  • Lee Shepherd – engineer (Massive Attack and Christchurch Studios)
  • Mark "Spike" Stent – mixing (Olympic Studios)
  • Jan Kybert, Paul "P-Dub" Walton – assistant mixing
  • Tim Young – editing, engineer (Metropolis Studios)

Chart history[edit]

Chart (1998) Peak
position
UK Singles Chart 30[5]
Recording Industry Association of New Zealand (RIANZ) 33[6]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Whalley, Matt. "Angel - Massive Attack (single review)". Allmusic. Retrieved 7 July 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Hanson, Amy. "Angel - Massive Attack". Allmusic. Retrieved 7 July 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Massive Attack - Angel". Retrieved 7 July 2013. 
  4. ^ "Roorback/Special Edition: Sepultura: MP3 Downloads". Amazon.com. Retrieved 2013-08-10. 
  5. ^ "Massive Attack". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  6. ^ "Discography Massive Attack". charts.org.nz. Hung Medien. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Horace Andy is credited by his real name, Horace Hinds, on the CD notes.