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The Evangelist

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iTunes Review

Australia’s Go-Betweens were among the musically significant “alternative rock” bands to emerge from the 1980s. The band continued an on-again, off-again relationship over the following two decades, adding and subtracting members, with the core always defined as the two contrasting songwriters: Robert Forster and Grant McLennan. McLennan suffered a fatal heart attack in May 2006, and 2008's The Evangelist became Forster’s first solo album in 12 years. Naturally then, this is an album infused with sadness. “Demon Days,” one of their final collaborations, has an undeniable prescience as its McLennan-penned chorus states: “But something’s not right / Something’s gone wrong.” The arrangements, supplied mostly by latter-day Go-Betweens, bassist Adele Pickvance and drummer Glenn Thompson, with string accents from Audrey Riley and occasional organ from Seamus Beaghen, are sparse and utilitarian. Forster’s lyrics are stripped to the bone. Whether he’s finding inner peace (“Pandanus”), accepting fate (“If It Rains”), apologizing (or is it rationalizing?) to his German wife for relocating her to Australia (“The Evangelist”) or doing battle with tragedy (“It Ain’t Easy”), he sings slow and steady, keeping control over the one aspect still within his reach.

Customer Reviews

Absolutely soothing

You're going to love Robert's music! I loved it


Sometimes I come across an album that surprises me. Such is the case with "The Evangalist." Forster's voice is in top form, as he tugs you a long with him through a powerful melancholy hope. Listen to "Demon Days" and you'll see exactly what I mean.

Best Album of the Year

Hands down, this is the best album of the year. It's unusual in this day and age to find an album this good. And the backstory only makes it that much more compelling.


Born: June 29, 1957 in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Although commonly considered to be the darker, artier half of the creative force of the Go-Betweens -- John Lennon to Grant McLennan's Paul McCartney, as it were -- Robert Forster has always had a knack for crafty pop songs along with the brooding ballads he contributed to the Go-Betweens' albums, and his solo career has shown a healthy mix of the two styles. Forster, a native of Brisbane, Australia, formed the Go-Betweens with McLennan at Queensland University in 1978. The duo kept the band going...
Full Bio
The Evangelist, Robert Forster
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