231. The Angels Come – Ark



Four Brits joined forces with one of the greatest guitarists in history to produce an amazing album that almost immediately disappeared. I fortunately had an older brother and this was left behind and would later be seen as a classic of British Jesus Music. Christian music historians often point to Ark as the band that forced others in the industry to take their quality and authenticity up a notch.

Producer and guitarist Al Perkins lead the band that also featured Dave Kelly (also on this list) through a collection a 10 songs influenced by The Byrds, Beatles, Crosby Stills & Nash and The Rolling Stones. Every song is very memorable and destined for radio, but with no support the album ended up destined for cut out bins. I have yet to meet anyone that owns the album that doesn’t consistently rave about it.

Much like how the Knack really was more 60’s than new wave when listening to the core of the songs, the same is the case here. Though distinctly modern sounding with world music influences and pop/ska instrumentation as times, onw really can’t miss the 60’s and early 70’s influences. Perhaps the Sunday’s Child album from Phil Keaggy works as a musical comparison. Despite being distinctly modern it also works as an homage to the past.

Al Perkins would continue working in CCM and mainstream music and Dave Kelly would record a wonderful solo project previously discussed here.

  1. Mike
    November 24, 2010 at 8:37 pm

    Is this the same Al Perkins that was in Shiloh and Manassas, and later with Emmylou Harris’ Nash Ramblers?

    • low5point
      November 25, 2010 at 12:59 am


  2. Shawn McLaughlin
    November 25, 2010 at 12:11 am

    Yes, Mike. One and the same. I’m so glad this album is in the countdown. I’ve had it for about 10 years and have never had the chance to talk about it with anyone other than one friend up here. Very Byrds influenced as well as The searchers and The Hollies…..great Jangle rock but imbued with all the influences Dave mentions in his review. When it came out, a contemporary influence might have been REM and the Athens Georgia and Raleigh North Carolina scenes that were hugely influenced by 60’s and 70’s pop/rock.

  3. Tim
    November 25, 2010 at 4:38 am

    So these guys are different from the ones who made “Voyages” in 1978? If so, does that mean there was an “Ark”, “The Ark”, and “Arcangel”? How confusing that would be!

  4. TMc
    November 27, 2010 at 3:32 am

    Look closely and you’ll see they spell it ‘Ark. I bought this on cassette when it first came out and really liked it. I still play it now and again and it still seems fresh. For some reason no one else I ever shared it with back then liked it at all. I’ve never been able to figure it out. Of course, they didn’t like Mark Heard when he went electric either.

  5. Robbie
    April 14, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    Check out their new fanpage http://www.facebook.com/thechristianbadfinger
    all of their music has been digitally remastered and is for sale on this page, including Dave Kelly’s solo album “Crowning of a Simple Man” and 6 other tracks that were destined for a follow up album but were never released.

  6. rob marshall
    May 18, 2017 at 8:51 pm

    more byrds than any sound. dave kelly was a very nice & proper gentleman!

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