For many people their first exposure to the music of While Angels Watch, the project of London based musician Dev, began in 2002 with the release of Dark Age on the French label Cynfeirdd. A fine representation of dark folk music, aided by Matt Howden and Jane Griffiths of Sieben and Ian Read of Fire + Ice. A few years later, Still The Star Shines, further enhanced their reputation in dark folk circles.

However, interested listeners would have noticed from even a quick glance at the While Angels Watch discography that they had a rich history and that Dev had been active in post-punk circles stretching way back to the early eighties. Active in the squat scene of the time, he performed guitar for hardy post-punk perennials Flowers In The Dustbin before fronting his own band Tom's Midnight Garden. An early line-up of (what was to become) While Angels Watch featured Patrick Leagas, formerly of Death In June. A while later members of While Angels Watch assisted Patrick with the recording of the debut Sixth Comm album, Content With Blood, released on Eyas Media. While Angels Watch never issued any vinyl; their output was confined to three cassette releases all issued in frighteningly small numbers. 

During 2008 a compilation of 12 tracks from the previously issued While Angels Watch cassettes | Reflection of Joy (1986) | Behind The Mists (1988) | Falling In Love (1991) | was released after a move from Cynfeirdd to the German label Eis & Licht. The CD, History & Heritage Volume I, picks up from the post-punk period and specifically from the influence of Death In June and Joy Division, taking them as a springboard for While Angels Watch to develop a sound that crosses into punk, electronic dance, pop and what we now know as neofolk or dark folk. A signature sound which has matured and developed through natural transition, alongside the addition of more organic instrumentation. Music still proud to retain the essence of its 1980's roots but seamlessly enhanced for the 21st Century.

Tony Dickie
Compulsion Magazine