One of the safeguards against a band reunion turning sour is great songs — songs that demand dynamics and tranquility and outbursts.
Because ambitious songwriting, the elevating components of a performable piece of art, outlast time in a way that vocal cords, fire-in-the-belly and joints cannot.
When Neva Dinova’s “Jesus’ Choir” crests about three minutes in, it’s the rapid lyrical zoom-out — “and the abbots in the alley and the kids in Abel Hall” — that seems to work frontman Jake Bellows into the frenzy he himself created in the 2002 song. To this point, the defunct Omaha band had been savoring the groove of “Jesus’ Choir,” adding more and more parts until the dam breaks.
“Spreading lies across the nation,” Bellows screams when the time comes, hurtling himself momentarily away from the mic. That building confidence was the story of our review of the one-off, Dec. 23 reunion show.
Watch the band perform “Jesus’ Choir” below.