Angel in the Dark
is a lovely recording featuring the graceful vocals and finely crafted songs that everyone expects from Laura Nyro
. These sessions were completed in the summer of 1995 and represent the last music Nyro
recorded. The title cut and "Sweet Dream Fade" mine the same soul terrain as her late '60s recordings, featuring horns and underlined by heavy guitar riffs. These upbeat pieces perfectly integrate voice, arrangements, and lyrics to create an organic whole, and are two of the best cuts on the album. Slower, piano-based songs like "Triple Goddess Twilight," "He Was Too Good to Me," and "Serious Playground" are mixed in-between these songs. These pieces are quieter and introspective, with Nyro
's voice more intimate. It is almost as though she was sitting at the piano, late at night, and singing to herself. There are also several covers including "Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow" and "Let It Be Me." The first of these is over five minutes and has been slowed down so much that it drags. In fact, she slows down all of the covers as if to convert them into heartfelt ballads. This works best on "Ooh Baby, Baby," partly because the arrangement is fuller and more dynamic. One other standout is the upbeat "Gardenia Talk," filled with lively percussion and a sensual vocal. Angel in the Dark
is a fine coda, perfect for late-night listening, and a perfect companion to Nyro
's other recordings.