After the dark twisted masterpiece of First Utterance
came back a few years later with a second LP, To Keep From Crying
. Even with Henry Cow
bassoonist Lindsay Cooper
saxophonist Didier Malherbe
added to the ranks, To Keep From Crying
does not get anywhere near the power of the first album. There are some dark folk songs here with both female and male vocals and a lot of progressive touches, but at the same time the record has a far more conventional rock sound, especially on the bouncy opening tracks on each side of the record, "Down (Like a Movie Star)" and "So Long Supernova." "Touch Down" is a bit creepier, with more acoustic guitars, as well as what sounds like a ghostly children's chorus and some cosmic synth tones. Other pieces like "Figure in Your Dreams" and "Perpetual Motion" offer some unusual vocal arrangements (and the latter ends with a cool tape loop effect), though nothing in the realms of the earlier record. The three experimental drone-scapes, "Waves and Caves," "Panophany," and "After the Dream," end far too quickly, as they clock in at well under a minute apiece. The record is pretty good, but it has the misfortune of paling in the shadow of its nightmarish predecessor.