Angels & Airwaves, ‘The Dream Walker’

This is a change of pace for Angels & Airwaves, who are fronted by Blink-182 singer-guitarist Tom DeLonge. Co-writing and co-producing with drummer Ilan Rubin (formerly of Nine Inch Nails), he fashions a bizarre, apocalyptic story of Poet Anderson, who has a personal “Dream Walker” to protect him from a “world of ruin,” as “The Wolfpack” suggests. Rubin pushes the music closer to a densely processed, hard-edged Nine Inch Nails feel; it doesn’t reach that stratosphere, but NIN fans should enjoy it. “Teenagers and Rituals” packs a NIN-like wallop, while the excellent “Tunnels” lands somewhere between NIN and the hypnotic side of Pink Floyd. Its lyric of “I will not give up” frames the central theme of the album, though most songs have downbeat lyrics that would shake anyone’s optimism. The story line is not for the squeamish, but the music often has an exhilarating power. (Out now)


Essential “Tunnels”