The self-titled album by Assembly of Light Choir, out tomorrow via At A Loss Recordings, is an out-of-body listening experience. When you put on this record and you start feeling that you are floating in space, don’t fight the feeling, just roll with it. All six songs will teleport your whole being into another reality as you fly away on some very ethereal voices. There has not been an album created like this in many years, because something about this will appeal to heavy music weirdos & spaced-out weirdos just as much. CVLT Nation is extra hyped that we have been given the honor to stream this whole album below, so sit back, tune in and space out!
Text by Astrid Tonella
Label: Svart Records
Hexvessel – No Holier Temple
In 2011, Hexvessel released its debut album Downbearer, a little jewel that has rocked my soul for quite a while and has become very intimate to me. For those who are not familiar with the band, Hexvessel is a psychedelic rock folk octet hailing from Finland, founded by Mat “Kvohst” McNerney vocalist for Dødheimsgard and Code.
After a first album highly acclaimed by the critics, there was no wonder Hexvessel’s second opus No Holier Temple was highly awaited. But with no surprise, the band offers us another very unique masterpiece. This is a very daring album, powerful and extremely varied as much in the choice of instruments as in the difference ambiances and emotions it provides. The sound of Holier No Temple sounds like it could have been recorded in the early 70’s, which enhances the vibe researched and adds coherence to the whole album. Its atmosphere and identity is so strong that you’ll feel teleported somewhere in a Finnish forest while listening to it. What is interesting about this record is that you can get it right from the first listen. Full of subtleties, you’ll pick something new each time you listen to it, which shows how rich this album is.
Right now I’m listening to a song call “South Of The River” from HORDERS, a one-man project by Texas’ Give Up, and everything about this tune makes me look into the eyes of my own flaws. The composition was taken from the most recent album, entitled Fimbulvetr, out now via Feast of Tentacles. This record is not about one specific song, it’s about a sonic collage of gentle, and sometimes harsh noise that will move your mental state to a new audio sensation. What will get you addicted to this album is the language of the guitar playing, which is really heavy in it’s quiet way. I dig the way that HORDERS uses loops and samples to get the point across. What is never lost is melody, even if it’s hidden under a giant wall of distortion. Fimbulvetr is full of sad music that is perfect for happy daze. CVLT Nation is extra stoked that HORDERS and Feast of Tentacles have given us the opportunity to stream the full record for our readers to get into. If you buy the vinyl version of this record, you are actually getting art…peep some flicks after the jump!
CVLT Nation turned me on to Australian duo White Hex when they posted about the band’s debut back in July. I was immediately sold on their musical rendering of icy distance and deep narcotic atmosphere. When Sean & Meghan asked if Ides Of Gemini would be interested in participating in one of CVLT Nation’s “Artist To Artist” interviews, I thought it would be appropriate for me to email some questions to White Hex guitarist Jimi Kritzler. The following exchange took place over a couple of weeks in August 2012.
- J. Bennett
How did you and Tara (Green, vocals) meet?
We have known each other for 8 years but it was only when we both wound up in the same city after years of not seeing each did we form White Hex. That was July last year. We wrote some songs and disappeared to Egypt together to finish writing the record.
Did you really go to Egypt, or are you yanking my chain?
No, I am completely serious. Tara and I disappeared to Egypt for a few weeks to think about the record and finish the songs before we again disappeared to record the album and live in Berlin. I have attached a photo as proof….it is not in front of pyramids so don’t get yr hopes up too much.
How refreshing! It’s amazing to finally come across a group of musicians who so freely are able to express and conjoin esoteric ideas of occult philosophy, cosmological christ-hood, dichotomies of sin and sainthood, god and lucifer, light and dark; not enacting as enemies, but as parts of a whole that feed off of one another in order to fulfill unity.
Filled with processean liturgy and praise, Sabbath Assembly‘s Ye Are Gods stays true to 60′s-70′s psychedelic cult hymnals and takes you to a place of mysterious inner worship — this time in a very Crowley-esque manner. In contrast to ‘Restored to One’, ’Ye Are Gods’ evokes a much more authentic, yet more open and inner home for the idea of universality; of everything and nothing as holy, as sacred, as cosmological, and as pure. Musically, I am reminded a bit of Crowley’s “The Great Beast Speaks”, and I can’t help but see a few parallels with some selections from The Moon Lay Hidden Beneath A Cloud‘s A New Soldier Follows The Path of a New King, which subtly also explores sanctity and salvation in an esoteric manner.
Genre: Noise/Industrial/Death Industrial/Power Electronics
Originally published at Equivoke.
This is the last piece of material from the releases enclosed on “The Boundary Between The Living And The Deceased Dissolved”; a set of rare and unreleased tracks in the Blue Sabbath Black Cheer catalogue. Not being as familiar with his various releases as I would like I cannot tell you when these were recorded, however it is quite a compilation of vile sounds to ingest.
There’s a great deal of variance in terms of arrangement and intensity to be found on this album. Despite this the atmosphere never strays far from a violent hellstorm. It is truly a string of monstrous sonic eruptions, the essence of destruction laid down in harsh and unforgiving terms, never lacking in structure but always creative and surprising. Track lengths run from 4 minutes at their shortest to one 11 minute conjuration of spellbinding horror and everything in between; even on the more lengthy track it never loses you which is a testament to this acts ability and talent in such a niche genre.
Out of the gate I was immediately impressed by “The Sense of Violence”, one wonders just how much you can do with harsh noise but Blue Sabbath Black Cheer prove continuously that it can be as engaging and creative as any other style. The sharp shrieks of metal on metal and roars of ferocity merge with metallic clangs, high pitch noise and muffled booms to create a jarring and haunted grind in this opener. Feedback and a rotating static grows before the iron clangs come back for a brief section of gritty silence, split open by feral roars. An industrial landscape being ruined by some unearthly evil.
For a band whose initial cult following and mystique arguably stemmed, at least to some degree, from their cryptic nature and infrequent live appearances, Pacific Northwest dark metal giants Agalloch have found themselves thrust into the spotlight time and time again since the release of 2010′s Marrow of the Spirit. The guys don’t need any sort of lengthy intro; if you’ve found your way to CvltNation, there’s probably a decent chance you’ve already been acquainted with their signature blend of atmospheric earth noises, acoustic passages, and swelling guitar virtuosity. What I really dig about Agalloch’s rise to notoriety is their penchant for bringing their own favorite artists on tour with them, exposing these other noteworthy (and oft times non-metal and experimental) artists to the average unwashed show-going metalhead in the process. I probably would not have been exposed to acts such as Daniel Menche, Sol Invictus, Allerseelen, Ludicra and a metric-fuckton of others were it not for their various relations to Agalloch themselves, and there’s something both humble and admirable about handpicking tour accompaniment in the face of bands touring together solely for monetary and contractual purposes. I tend to be a bit choosy about which opening bands I’ll sit through, but I’ve always made time for any group opening for the misanthropic Portlanders, and have never been let down. Agalloch’s recently released Faustian Echoes concept EP sits at the heart of this round of US tour dates, marking not only the longest single song effort the band has put forth yet, but an apparent embrace of the slightly more aggressive approach and sound found on Marrow‘s faster tracks. In-tow as main support this time around is Portland, OR’s drone-psyche duo Taurus, accompanied locally by previously one-man black metal project Oskoreien. Read the full show write-up and gallery after the jump!
Francesca Woodman was one of the most dynamic photographers of this century from my point of view. In her short life on this planet of only 22 years, she made a mark on this world like no other. Looking at her work is like listening to Joy Division – it makes you question everything around you, while seeing strength in darkness. Francesca never tried to become an artist, she was born an artist, because this was the only way she knew how to communicate with the world. While she was living, the photography community didn’t get where she was coming from with her sombre and grotesque imagery. It was not until after she took her life in 1981 that people started to realize how special her work was, and now her influence can be seen widely in artistic photography. What draws me to her work is the language of despair that her pictures convey. In 2010, there was a very interesting documentary made about her called The Woodmans. It examined her relationship with her family, who were also artists in their own right, and it is a must watch for anyone who is an appreciator of her work. Today, CVLT Nation wants to celebrate the creative spirit of Francesca Woodman with a huge photo essay of her pictures. Witness her reality after the jump…
The Clearing from LOCRIAN, released last year on vinyl by Fan Death Records, was one of our favorite records of the year (read our review HERE). Now this epic sonic wall of mind-altering sound is being re-released on CD by Relapse Records, alongside a second CD containing rare tracks, entitled Final Epoch. This duo is being offered as The Clearing/The Final Epoch and will be going on sale tomorrow Aug 14th HERE. CVLT Nation is honored to be streaming this classic in full below!
STREAM Final Epoch after the jump…
Sabbath Assembly’s Ye Are Gods album is set for release on September 21st through The Ajna Offensive for North America and Svart Records for Europe. To say how original this record is would be an understatement. Sabbath Assembly have just released a visual for the song “In The Time Of Abaddon,” directed, shot and edited by Jason Keenan and Derek Abramson of Cinders//Ash Media. Read all of the killer details about the video below and let the trip begin after the jump!
The video for “In the Time of Abaddon” introduces viewers to a cataclysmic onslaught of Processian imagery, past and present, as Genesis P-Orridge (PSYCHIC TV, THROBBING GRISTLE) narrates the impending doom of the Apocalypse according to text by Process Church founder Robert deGrimston. New vocalist Jamie Myers then offers a chant from the “Discourse on Abaddon,” an ancient Coptic scroll that reveals the history and purpose of the Angel of Death – Abaddon: King of This World, a source of terror, to whom every person shall bow at the time of their death…no escape. Welcome to Hell: