Categories
Review

GENOCIDE SHRINES, HERESIARCH, SERPENTS ATHIRST, & TREPANATION mean total war on “Scorn Coalesence”

In a conflict that spans continents, four players in a game of mutually assured destruction each set off their chosen salvo of concentrated hatred, leaving no victor, only an aftermath of desecration and ruin.

The four way split entitled, Scorn Coalescence serves as a kind of simulation of such a devastating, apocalyptic clash between forces. With every subsequent track, artillery shift their treads, altering firing patterns, as the calculated infantry that advance upon the enemy are suddenly replaced with frantic berserkers. Both within each track on this four part end times display, as well as between them, the aura of crossfire reigns supreme, and ultimate conflict is invoked.

Genocide Shrines

Scorn Coalescence is made up of four different bands, representing two very remote countries half a world away, and yet all bound together by the gnarled chains of the bestial style. Sri Lankan radicals and New Zealand maniacs pit themselves against one another in bitter, merciless struggle to the end. Here, the terrain of this battleground is borne of black and death metal, and each combatant navigates their own way. (editor’s note: N. from Heresiarch explains how the split came to be)

Sri Lanka has gained prominence in recent years within the underground for a burgeoning atmosphere of metal that is as acidic as it is brutally pummeling. So it is only logical that the Sri Lankan scene be represented by some of their strongest perpetrators. Serpents Athirst make the first move in “Poisoning The Seven”, which, from the chilling riff that begets the storm, exudes an air of dominating prowess and grandeur. Battle lines drawn and marching blocks of troop offensives emanate from Serpents Athirst in their playing. Never does the band lose control of the raw chaos they invoke, instead managing to keep it tightly bound within strict doctrine of warfare, only to let it loose in a concentrated blast of unremitting hellfire.

Serpents Athirst

Through the smoking rubble, following in the wake of their countryman, Genocide Shrines are not content to sweep up the survivors and straglers of the initial assault, but proceed to take the situation fully into their own grasp in the form of “All And/Or Nothing”.

It quickly becomes apparent that both bands out of Sri Lanka share a knack for calculated violence, as Genocide Shrines seem to have kept the thousand pound warbeast of their conjoined sound in check, directing it against the enemy lines. A bulbous, overripe bass tone undercuts the band’s sound, and paired with the abyssal howls of Tridenterrorcult, Genocide Shrines shakes the earth under treads of indominable, tyrannical iron. There is a sonic narrative trajectory that characterizes “All And/Or Nothing”, as the initial holocaust rises to a steadier, upward gaze of triumph, only to be cast back down into the maelstrom of eternal warfare once again. In its own way, Genocide Shrines are encapsulating the inevitable flat circle of the human race.

In opposition to the regimented attackers, New Zealand is embodied in twin engines of pandaemonium to offset the structure of the enemy. Out of the haze, Trepanation exact a blitzkrieg of psychotic violence, letting out manic screams of reckless abandon as they seem to flail themselves about at anything that moves. All the while, a seething tone of electronic noise pierces the fog, causing the listener to feel shell shocked and dazed, only to be hastily cut down by Trepanation’s frenetic dirging.

The decisive end comes with the arrival of Heresiarch and their warhead termination protocol through, “Dread Prophecy”. The Wellington horde intend to end everything, exhibiting aspects of ally and enemy alike through the lense of their own will. Subsequent barrages of blasting drums, rabidly squirming guitar, and barbaric gutturals turn any kind of foundations to dust. The bass reigns supreme in Heresiarch’s arsenal, looming like a sonic giant in the mix of their overall roar. When met with the drums and vocals, Heresiarch summon a tectonic scale of impact that one can only behold with despair and awe.

Heresiarch

In this war, no one wins. Such is the power of these four bands. As scathing as it is, Scorn Coalescence is an informative split in several ways. In the aftermath of it all, we can see overt similarities and differences between bands and the countries they come from through their respective sounds. And by doing this, it also goes to show the flexibility of the bestial war metal style. What is often relegated to a strict dogma of execution is, in regards to these four bands, made less cramped, and open to interpretation of the blueprint.

As is the nature and most effective application of the genre, Scorn Coalescence hits hard and fast, wasting no time to initiate the inevitable downfall of life. But with every song, we are propositioned with fire and poison by four different bands, and each one is befitting of further exploration and allegiance.


Available for mass consumption via CYCLOPEAN EYE PRODUCTIONS on CD format.

HERESIARCH
GENOCIDE SHRINES
SERPENTS ATHIRST
TREPANATION

Categories
Review

TREPANERINGSRITUALEN turns back towards primal urges with “ᛉᛦ — Algir; eller Algir i Merkstave”

Trepaneringsritualen, for anyone who’s been following the darkest corners of the post-industrial underground over the last fifteen years or so, needs no introduction. Building up a reputation for their punishing live performances, pounding rhythms, heavy-as-fuck bottom end noise, and lyric-driven orations of apocalypses, bringing back to mind some of the raw-as-decaying-meat moments of groups like SPK, NON, or even In Slaughter Natives. However, this time around Mr. Ekelund has decided to take a subdued route this time with a very minimal ritual ambient release.

Simplicity, desolation, and sparseness is the approach this time around, as a near-complete departure from the straightforward industrial assault previously developed over their last two records. ᛉᛦ — Algir; eller Algir i Merkstave is a collection of unsettling sounds, sparsely placed chimes, whispers, horns, something resembling a waterphone, and deep bassy drones carried out in two ordeals, each being exactly 19 minutes long. Whether or not that would turn off fans of their more vocal work, it really speaks more to the primal ritualistic elements of the band’s genesis. Throughout the record, the sense of tension and encroaching fear never leaves, as our instinctual sense of unease is triggered by our natural reactions toward high and low frequencies of sound, that same sense of inexplicable queasiness we feel when hearing certain unexplained sounds in nature or haunted areas, setting our teeth on edge.

The second half turns more toward elements of tranquility and gives off a general atmosphere of rebirth, after experiencing “death” in the first half. Towards a new plane of experience, yet having to go through pain and fear in order to emerge on the other side. After experiencing the overpowering darkness of Deathward to the Womb, the relentless hammering of Perfection & Permanence, or the slight nods to industrial accessibility in Kainskult, this really doesn’t resemble much of TxRxP’s other works, but feels like a new piece of the mosaic being filled. This is a multidimensional beast with so many sides to their mystic view of the world and the darkness lying just beneath the veil to explore and be expressed. It will be interesting to see what next turn their journey takes in their ever evolving excursions into the murky caverns of existence.

As we head into the autumn season after having the world set on fire the last few months, this release provides the perfect soundtrack for settling down into some place dark, letting the shadows overcome your thoughts, and peering anew at new possibilities for the future as one who rises from the ashes, and still hasn’t lost their lust for the fire.


Released into the wild by COLD SPRING RECORDS on CD in 6-panel digipak and Limited first edition LP of 500 copies on 180g black vinyl.

HOMEPAGE
BANDCAMP
FACEBOOK

Categories
Interview

HERESIARCH: No Sanctum

Artists, theologians and philosophers have contemplated belief and ideology since time immemorial. These regimes of truth have been painted for us in many colours but, ideological or spiritual, all ultimately come back with the same motive – domination of the individual. Absolving us of personal responsibility through fate, diminishing the range of our free will through doctrine, eminence through order. 

New Zealand’s Heresiarch explores a chaos world devoid of these bodiless structures, where hope is rejected and the divine is meaningless. “Our scenarios are set in the fray of a power vacuum, amongst the twilight of beliefs, faiths and philosophies which have been made redundant. In their wake a new path is forged, detached from the aforementioned. It is a world of struggle, chaos and lawlessness where force and death reign supreme.” tells founding member and vocalist N.H. “It is situational to a world where the sacred cows have been put to pasture, so to speak. The twilight referenced reduces us to instinctual, animal survival from which an intangible, conquering way emerges as a consequence to this. There is no name or identifying tenets for this other than power itself. As it is far removed and has not yet occurred, it isn’t explored or described further.”

Heresiarch’s vision has honed since their first releases in 2011, a demo and EP (Obsecrating the Global Holocaust and Hammer of Intransigence, respectively). In these early days the annihilation of the gods and the rejection of hope and belief were already dominant themes in their work, drawing from concepts such as Ragnarok and over time fleshing them out further into their own narrative world on later works Wælwulf and the cyclopean sound of their 2017 full-length Death Ordinance. “There’s a continuation throughout which metamorphosises with each release – Wælwulf and Death Ordinance are set 1000 years apart. ‘Lupine Epoch’ references some of the earlier themes but is more solidified in the identity we have forged, which was built upon earlier Heresiarch narratives. Heresiarch means ‘a founder of heresy’ and is reflected through our music, lyrics and purpose. The death and conquest of gods within physical and metaphorical forms is a statement of absolute power. This conquest and murder of gods was built out and emphasised from our relatively primitive foundation, particularly with Wælwulf.”

“There are themes in our music relating to the conflict and balance of individual experience against the wider macrocosm,.” says N.H. “Our most recently released track ‘Dread Prophecy’, is a scenario where two adversaries fight to the death whilst the sun implodes. The outcome is futile but their action and conflict is the paramount objective and central focus. The defiance and conquest of faith, destiny, hope and belief itself is a part of this balance and by extension, struggle. Those phenomena mentioned are viewed as weapons of manipulation and control used against the individual, recurrent throughout history in numerous manifestations, environments and methodologies. Zealotry and wilful ignorance lauded as virtue aren’t exclusive to spiritual realms and are viewed as symptoms rather than the cause. Whether through doctrine, organised religion or other mass movements, people are validated and encouraged to seek refuge from their own limitations. ”

Throughout this time, Heresiarch has morphed slowly into the creature that it is today, under the guidance of N.H., the remaining founding member. “Though I consider the band as an entity outside of myself, it has been under my direction with contributions from key collaborators since formation,” he says. “Throughout, members have come from a range of personalities, backgrounds and perspectives working towards the common purpose and vision of the band. Line-up changes become less of a concern as this vision and identity is further established. Whilst ideas, methods and execution may change, consistency and honesty in the approach is most important. Early on, our music was inspired by the bands we drew immediate influence from, esoteric topics, warfare, mythos and the recurrence of conflict throughout history. Seeing and drawing parallels between those topics built the foundation of our themes which were documented from a cold and detached perspective, presented as timeless and universal, occurring throughout existence and to continue once we cease to exist. Outside sources became less important as the identity and purpose of Heresiarch is solidified and becomes self-propagating.”

© Odin Imaging

“Self-evolution is a part of the journey. Whilst having my own principles, goals and motivations, many of my perspectives and outlooks have changed throughout the years. Continued challenges, trials and evaluation bring about purposeful change and improvement. Heresiarch was my first “proper” band, founded in my late teens so naturally there will be some growth and discovery, the last 5 years have been particularly significant in terms of this.

He continues, “The above is applicable to the creative process as well as individual outlets. The ability to self-assess, critique and identify ways to improve is an important aspect of the band. This is paramount to the creative process, one of the few areas where an individual can truly have some semblance of control over their lives. With that, Heresiarch has continued to evolve with different iterations of members, collaborators and new objectives. To “settle” on our musical output or fall into the trap of absolutist belief, submission and obedience to scenes, ideologues and dogma would be the death of self-growth, stagnating creativity and contradicting the purpose of the band itself.”

Heresiarch’s music is reflective of their thematic universe, titanic blackened death metal bedlam that takes you into a desperate and irredeemable world. Their newest single, “Dread Prophecy” was released through Indian label Cyclopean Eye Productions on Scorn Coalescence to be released in late September by Dark Descent on LP, a vicious four-way split alongside Sri Lanka’s Genocide Shrines and Serpents Athirst as well as NZ compatriots Trepanation. This collaborative effort was conceived on a visit to Sri Lanka and took years to come to fruition.

“I travelled to Sri Lanka in 2016 and spent most of my time with the members of Genocide Shrines and Serpents Athirst as well as meeting the wider Pannipitiya collective,” says N.H. “We’d been in touch since 2011, shortly before the Genocide Shrines EP came out which I’d recommended to Iron Bonehead at the time. As such, we had a strong connection between both bands in our formative years which had strengthened since, so they were always a natural ally.”

“We had been considering putting out a short release of new material at the time to coincide with Death Ordinance planned for the following year. We discussed and agreed on a split release with Genocide Shrines and Serpents Athirst representing Sri Lanka with Trepanation joining us from New Zealand. 4 bands with different timelines didn’t work out as intended, the track we originally recorded was also on Death Ordinance and with shows, touring, line-up changes and other commitments we didn’t get to finish recording until returning from our second US tour in 2018.”

Over the years we’ve seen an influx of impressive extreme music coming from the scantily populated New Zealand. Being physically isolated from the rest of the world comes with its own set of challenges, but has made the sounds endemic to the island nation stand out amongst the crush. “The geographic isolation, relative youth as a nation, the intense nature of the New Zealand Wars (Kai Tangata was a key inspiration for ‘Carnivore’) and our surroundings have all been a source of inspiration,” he says. “How much so is intangible since I can only reference growing up in New Zealand and Australia but the differences are certainly noticeable when travelling abroad.”

“The logistics of touring and travel requires a lot of planning and coordination when looking outside of New Zealand and Australia. Potentially this has improved the standard of bands which have made it out of our country, particularly across Death and Black/Death Metal as it requires bands to be more purposeful, willful and self-determined,” he continues. “Living in Wellington had some more tedious obstacles, especially with forming a line-up to perform and record with. There were very few people interested in this type of music then and it was difficult finding suitable musicians within New Zealand. For the first 3 releases all other members’ lived in different cities to me.”

“Discovering and physically buying music at the time was expensive, having to pay ridiculous prices for imported releases and merchandise from retailers. Eventually I started Internecion Productions and began distributing, promoting and releasing material myself within NZ and abroad. One of the key points I’ve noticed about worthwhile New Zealand bands and people is an initiative to seek out and actualise what we want to happen ourselves.”

© Odin Imaging

The shift in extreme music towards bands having a comprehensive and total vision for their œuvres is not entirely recent, though we have come to see a lot more of this in the past decade, giving artists more of a guiding hand in how their work is taken in and perceived. Heresiarch’s partaking in this kind of artistic direction seems to have been innate, evident in the thread that runs through their music, artwork and presentation. “We are involved with all components of a release from artwork, writing, recording and mixing process. Initially this was with some brashness due to youth, limited reference, perspective and experience. Later this was achieved with a clearer vision and more focus, particularly with Wælwulf, Death Ordinance and material we have written since,” says N.H. “Ideas are fleshed out from the root level with a ‘holistic’ view of all mediums such as the broad lyrical content and narrative as well as delivery, role each instrument plays, atmosphere, aesthetics and how they all interrelate.” 

“Our music is often primitive to compliment the blunt and cruel nature of our topics, and the artwork should represent this on a grand scale. It’s important to envision how each component of the release represents itself, identify the suitable artist and then direct the vision until completion. Whether or not what we achieve is “ground-breaking” is of little concern. We write for our own satisfaction and have control, through that there is honesty and integrity to the vision which is crucial.”

After their performance at Covenant Festival III, Heresiarch’s 2018 US tour was their last stint on the road – besides the aforementioned split, they have been at work forming what’s to come. “We recently finished another split which is anticipated to be released 2020, whilst being true to our sound and delivery this also delves into newer territory for us. We are composing our second album with the conceptual direction and purpose of the release outlined; it will coincide with Death Ordinance but will be more bleak and violent. What we have set as objectives and written to date is a natural progression from previous releases though there will be emphasised regressions as well. This will be our primary focus for the foreseeable future.  South East Asia and Europe have been in our sights for some time, but we won’t be addressing this until after the second album.”

As they continue to dilate the abstract of their work, Heresiarch speaks to the confrontation of the individual against the powers of mass submission, and the many ways we’ve found to obscure true existence – a confrontation that we may never see to fulfillment. 

“Countless slaughters have occurred throughout millennia from those who believe they possessed knowledge of absolute truth and were wholly justified in their means and actions. The control that despots, hegemons and cults had in the previous centuries shattered power dynamics, resulting in myopic perspective, loss of individual autonomy and mass death via their ‘true believers’.” 

“It’s a recurrent theme throughout history and is highly likely to continue. Ultimately we are a Black/Death Metal band documenting the scenarios mentioned previously. Our ethos is much more detached and not directed towards a utopian ideal. As a witness to the last man and destruction of all life; struggle, force and death are the only truths Heresiarch can objectively see.”

“Homō hominī lupus” – Plautus

Daniel Bloxham art

BANDCAMP
FACEBOOK

Categories
Interview

TO END IT ALL reveal the morose & mythical machinations behind their fresh Hell

Evading the specific confinements of any genre, To End It All are often described as death industrial, though ex-classical, dungeon synth, and harsh noise all make their appearance as well. After a pleasurable haunting by their performance at Covenant Festival V, we decided to reach out to see what’s behind the enchantment. Joy Von Spain and Masaaki Masao’s 12 year relationship as collaborators allows for a beauteous synthesis of artistic vision and aural inspiration, while maintaining distinct individual contributions.

I was fortunate enough to Skype with Von Spain and Masao of To End It All, based out of Seattle, Washington. What follows are segments from the transcript of this real-time dialogue.

Indu Iyer: Seattle is so renowned for grunge and rock, like Soundgarden, Mudhoney, Nirvana –  is there any influence there for you? 

Joy Von Spain: Not so much for me. I actually moved to Seattle in 2004, and I was more involved in the electronic and noise scene there, and you [Masao] were making electronic music mostly. I feel like there’s definitely the ghosts from the 90’s around, but like any city that has a lot of new people moving there all the time, the face of it changes every few years. 

Masaaki Masao: I’ve lived in Seattle for 21 years and did listen to some of that music, but I don’t know how much of that has influenced what I’ve ended up making. I was making Noisy Drum ’n’ Bass when I met Joy.

JVS: I was doing a lot more synthesizer oriented music [when we] started playing together. At some point I started doing some vocals which I hadn’t done for a really long time. I would say that there’s another vein to the Pacfific Northwest, extending down to the Bay area. There’s a whole Vancouver-Seattle-Portland-Oakland-San Francisco connection of harsh noise, experimental, industrial. We have more influence coming from that kind of scene. 

II: Do you feel like the weather and the climate have any influence over the type of music that’s come out of this region? Compared to the rest of the US and Canada, it’s just so grey, so dark.

JVS: Absolutely, but I don’t know if it’s necessarily a matter of influencing from within. I myself was attracted to the place because of that. [Masao’s] basically from the desert, I’m from Florida originally, so we kind of gravitated here because of the climate in some ways. And that’s why we stayed…there’s something to be said for the actual sound of the rain in the Northwest in that it creates this wash in the back of your mind.

**

I consider the difference between growing up nestled in a suburban cul-de-sac, versus the bustling mainstreet where I currently dwell, and the constant sound of traffic is akin to Von Spain’s rain-wash. The Pacific Northwest, though renowned for its scenic beauty, is known by locals for perpetually monochrome seasons and drab vibrance, something akin to London greyness. The dense forests have allowed it to be a hub for forestry, and its various waterways allowed for many port cities and trade centres. Noisy places of industry. Just as environment influences sound, environment influences economy, which links back to sound. Informal instruction from the world.

**

II: What’s your background with music and art? Do you have formal training, did both of you study music by yourselves, a bit of both? 

JVS: We definitely both have a background in studying instrumental music. I studied voice a little bit and I did some theatre when I was younger.  A little bit. I feel bad even saying that [laughs]. I studied music composition and theory mostly, big nerd on that front for sure. It’s kind of nice because when you learn the language of rehearsal as a young person, it makes it so much easier and faster to communicate and collaborate with other people in that environment. I don’t think it’s necessary because people have many different ways of communicating. [Masaaki and I] had enough of that background where it’s just easy for us to communicate our ideas quickly and try a lot of different things, than to try and reinvent the wheel.

II: Language of rehearsal, that’s interesting. I feel like intuitively I know what you mean, but how would you describe it?

JVS: Being able to try many different things in a short amount of time, or repeat the same thing. It’s kind of like a scientific experiment, you keep repeating it to see if you could get the same result, or if maybe some new information comes to you.

II: It requires a lot of openness and experimenting. You have to be willing to throw out an idea even if you like it, to cooperate a bit, things like that.

JVS: I think that’s definitely one side. Another side is the ability to not be irritated or upset in the repetition. I think that’s the discipline of the rehearsal. The language but also the discipline, both of those together are necessary. 

**

I have flashbacks of navigating creative terrain in theatre school, largely similar for any collaborative process: the frustration when others denied the necessity of repetition, or the shame when I looked lazy in thinking five from the top’s were enough. Then the shock and awe when improvised bullshit actually turned out better than anything rehearsed to supposed perfection. Honing the ability to move from dog-and-tennis ball type focus to open receptivity is but one challenge of the artist.

**

II: What do your lives look like as artists? Is all your work in music?

MM: Pretty much [laughs]. That’s all we do.

JVS: We have to make money with jobs, but then after that, there’s usually rehearsal a few times a week. We’re totally engaged in writing, performing and rehearsing, and going to other people’s events as well.

MM: It’s basically working on music for a few different projects and then going out to shows and then figuring out other aspects like videos and the visual element. 

JVS: We’ve also worked a lot with Butoh dancers. About 11 years ago, we started working with Vanessa Skantze, who’s a very interesting movement performer who has studied Butoh extensively and works with other practices as well, so some of that is present in our work. I did a modern dance minor when I was going to school, but I was mostly focusing on the collaboration between choreographers and composers and how dance and music work together. The field of study of dance expresses the same kind of emotions that we are doing with To End It All. 

**

I gasp at the mention of Butoh, and we share a moment of enthusiasm for having found fellow admirers of the avant-garde Japanese dance tradition. Butoh emerged post-WWII, and it’s founders  Tatsumi Hijikata and Kazuo Ohno sought to rebel against the subtlety of traditional Japanese dance forms like kabuki and noh. Though very diverse in how individual practitioners personalize Butoh, it is often performed in only white body paint and a loincloth, and involves a juxtaposition of slow, delicate movements, accompanied by sudden bursts of wild energetic displays. Thematically, Butoh explores the grotesque and taboo, something very inline with To End It All’s interests.

II: How about Scourge of Woman? It has such an amazing title and album cover, very evocative to the experience of being a woman, and has really powerful, visceral song titles like “Burning Rapists” and “In Cases of Incest and Rape.” Where does the conceptual side of things come into play? 

JVS: I write lyrics or snippets of things, and a lot of things can’t be expressed properly with our other band, Eye of Nix. It needs a different kind of intensity that’s a lot more personal, or even political in nature. There’s many, many, many things that we’re extremely enraged about, and have been our whole lives, so when we see these same things coming up over and over again, I don’t really know what else to do about it. Those are the sort of pieces that we’re reflecting with this music. With the album art for this particular album, I worked with Anima Noctura, who’s an artist who we work with a lot for album art and photography. We would just listen to the music and then look at the imagery we had created, and this was the perfect expression. It was like the Cassandra myth from Greek mythology. She could see the future, but no one would believe her. I feel very close to that story, I think all of us women do.

**

Daughter of the royals of Troy, Cassandra was gifted with clairvoyance by Apollo, on the agreement to be his. Shortly after being bestowed with Sight, however, she revoked this promise, and he cursed that her prophecies never be believed. The story is told as betrayal on Cassandra’s part, but who knows. Perhaps Apollo had a Weinstein streak, and merely used Blue-Balls rhetoric to silence a woman.

**

JVS: A lot of us have grown up with [beliefs like] we have the right to reproductive freedom, we have the right to autonomy, and to go around saying  “hey, if you don’t do this, or if you let this happen, this is what’s gonna come come next. I see the future.” Then, to not be believed. That was her curse. I feel like a lot of us walk around in our daily lives in that state. People, regardless of their gender, if they happen to be identifying as male or happen to be identifying as female, feel the same way. The alliance that we create together in our anger can be expressed in the sound, can be expressed in the visual representation of it. That’s the long answer of it.

**

Clearly moved by turmoils of the American zeitgeist, and by the private witnessing of the world around them, To End It All takes the scum of sexism and creates a bizarre yet resilient paste with which they mold meaning. The long answer is great. 

II: And what is it like for you Masaaki, what’s your experience or perspective as a male working with what Joy is talking about?

MM: I just try to support what she’s trying to say and get out there, and I completely agree. I try to be there to support the art of it. 

II: One thing I’m curious about is what it’s like to collaborate. Joy, do you strictly do vocals, and Masaaki, you strictly do the instrumental side of things? What’s that process like for you, do you both direct or influence each other?

MM: We definitely work together on all the music, but she comes up with all the vocals by herself. We talk about deciding which types of samples and how it’s going to be played, so we collaborate on music. All the keyboard parts.

JVS: Sometimes he’ll be delving for sounds out there in the world, and I’ll hear something and then want to record it, or he’ll hear something and go “oh we should use that sound.” Then we go to the rehearsal space and figure out how this sound is best showcased to be the meat of this piece. And then our keyboards are kind of … the supporting role a lot of the time. I feel like a lot of the time [Masao’s] doing the whole rhythm section and at times creating a whole environment. Then the voice will be one character walking into this whole space.

**

There is a theatrical quality to their sound, and it makes sense when considering this perspective on their work. The variety present in a set is like watching Chekhov: First Masha enters, then Olga, then Irina, each with their own worries, frustrations, sorrows. A single voice plays many characters, while still being part of a greater story-line. 

II: Something that struck me most was the vocal variety. Plain speaking, operatic singing, screaming, everything in between. What inspires or necessitates this?

JVS: It’s impossible to stick to one range, to one formula. It doesn’t seem possible to fit what we’re hearing in our minds into one cube.

**

Instead of a cube, a multifaceted crystal. To End It All is the kind of salt-of-the-earth artist that often gets lost in pretension and self-importance that contaminate the creative sphere. Articulate, passionate, and completely committed to their craft. If there was any hope to end Cassandra’s curse, this is it.


FACEBOOK
BANDCAMP