"Spectral Music of an Antiquary"

by Octopi Mills

"Haunter of Benighted English Summers" introduces this album, before "Mors where Devels are abrod", creating a darksome, electronic atmosphere that is calmly ambient and strange, not unlike the foggy soundtrack to a horror movie inspired by English countryside.When there are titles such as "Dusk Gardens of Translucent Mansions", it adds a focal point to which the mind may find some plumb in the murk of the weird rings and pings that accompany the introduction to rouge-like vocals that sound mad and dungeon bound, given to soft wailing and tortured things, as if coming from the past and through some stone curtain that hides the humanity of the musicians. The music sounds more like a field recording somehow, and not arranged in a corporeal concern or convention; there is not a math teacher around to point out things, nor something to grab onto in the waters of the recordings.

 As the music continues so does the vocals, though removed of much logic or meaning unless one had a lyric sheet, and I do not. And so through a forest of severed heads we are lead, or perhaps along the outside of one, and then to a Sylvan old Enchanter, though i cannot understand all or anything that the old fellow has said, as if the caves have obscured his rants in a muffled old spell and made the beating drum lesser. Droning, cavernous and looming are the sounds here, slow swirling like some half specter that never finds course with his burnt out lantern of muddy, useless rays. "Beneath carvings linger" has a nearly tribal effect in the realm of trance and nightmare, with the vocals becoming less human and more insect like; more undead than alive. The voices are twisted in this manner, droning and half formed, and at times one may catch what sounds like the voice of an Ecclesiastes, or some man of the cloth whose garments are fungal and wet, and cunning is the channeling nature of the voices, though subtle and destroyed in their own import.

The whole sound has a feel that is somehow like a reverb caused by putting ones head in a chamber or hallway. There is a track that is a field recording presented here with crude sound, yet it adds further strangeness to the album, and sounds as if it has been tinkered with and does not carry a natural spirit entirely. This album gives the feeling that you are watching scenes from a film, or the past unfold bleakly and slowly, though never forming. You are still the outsider. Not a bad affair at all if you can spare the time, but do it in a dark room or chamber would be the advice I could offer. Or at a party to ruin fellowship and fun...good night to all.