Stegzy's Music Project

A commentary on Stegzy's album collection

Heavenly Voices Parts 1 – 3 – Various Artists [#578-580]

A bumper three albums on a Friday with a most peculiar acquisition, Heavenly Voices.

Much like how Looking for Europe does for the Neofolk genre, Heavenly Voices does for the dreampop/ethereal wave genre by way of the artists on the Hyperium record label. Here we have, in effect, three distinctly glorious compilation albums featuring a whole range of talent from artists like Eden’s Sean Bowley and his side project Sunwheel to fully functioning bands like Bel Canto,  Black Tape for a Blue Girl and Miranda Sex Garden.

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[#578] Part One is possibly the most accessible of the three. A little catawauling here and there but a nice build up towards (and what was my introduction to) Ordo Equituum Solis‘  Playing with the Fire.

Dreamily swimming onwards through Die Form’s Cantique and culminating in Winter Moon Descending by Annabel’s Garden

hev[#579] Part Two takes a different approach. The songs here have a much more floaty dreamy kind of feel with a slight dash of hauntology. This album was my introduction to the whole Heavenly Voices trilolgy and as a result not only are there many artists who have appeared previously in the Music Project, for example Collection d’Arnell Andréa and Black Tape, but also many who are yet to come. Possibly my most favourite tracks from this album are Sunwheel’s Walk Upon the Grass (which, incidently, I was intending to shoot a music video for but couldn’t find a willing person to film in time! Maybe a later opportunity will arise) The Sea is My Soul by 24 Hours and the haunting 56 in 81 by Eleven Shadows.

 

11K190SNXWLFinally Part 3 [#580] copies of which are currently changing hands for around £300. Featuring a much more accessible approach to the genre with more familiar artists like Miranda Sex Garden and Bel Canto. Again, this album introduced me to many artists and it is easy to see why people prize it so highly. Emerging from Part 2’s forest of floaty vaginas into a dystopian landscape of industry like a stumbling ninny, the listener finds Part 3 rips up the leafy glades of Part 2 and drills deep concrete foundations of industrial darkwave right into your mind.

Legend has it that there is actually a part four and a part five compilation. Rumours, whispers abound.  Sadly the Hyperium label closed shortly after the death of its founder in 2002, but many of the acts continue on in the worlds of Darkwave and etheralwave.

 

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Ghosts from the Darkside II [#519]

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A compilation of highlights of Goth, Darkwave and Dark Electro bands.

During my exploration of usenet newsgroups, specifically the goth-industrial binary group, I happened upon a whole treasure trove of gothic compilations (as you will hear about a few weeks later on in this project). In an effort to grow my “repertoire” with goth music I would download compilations as a way to find new bands.

Ghosts from the Darkside II is pretty hard going. I’d heard of a few of the bands featuring on this album through other explorations, such as Inkubus SukkubusBlack Tape for a Blue Girl and Blutengel so it was natural for me to give it a go. However, I’d not really heard of any of the songs in the compilation either. There are quite a few German bands in this compilation so I suspect this is an album aimed at people who attend Wave Gothik Treffen.

After several listens I’m still not enamoured with the album. Perhaps it’s because I’m older now and I’ve reached “Full of Goth” or perhaps it’s because I just don’t like what I’ve heard.

Tracklist

1-1 Swartalf Invocation 4:03
1-2 Non Compos Mentis Without Bloodshed 6:10
1-3 Ikon (4) Fatal Attraction 3:17
1-4 In Extremo Ai Vis Lo Lop 4:02
1-5 Morthem Vlade Art Beyond Sorrow 5:19
1-6 WeltenBrand The Fall Of Trisona 6:35
1-7 Diary Of Dreams Drop Dead 7:11
1-8 Nekromantik Girlstickboy 4:05
1-9 Blutengel Beauty Of Suffering 6:13
1-10 Fiction 8 Second Skin 3:32
1-11 Girls Under Glass New World Order 4:20
1-12 Das Zeichen In The Garden 3:58
1-13 Theatre Of Loneliness Holocaust 4:16
1-14 black tape for a blue girl Given 4:20
1-15 Hagalaz’ Runedance When The Trees Were Silenced 2:45
2-1 Exovedate Ego Sum Mons 4:30
2-2 Untoten Gothik Years 5:54
2-3 Chaos God Judgement Day 5:36
2-4 The Dust Of Basement God’s Own Fairytales 5:28
2-5 The Second Sight Answer 3:29
2-6 Die Form Spiral 2 4:12
2-7 Vespertina De Profundis 4:20
2-8 Inkubus Sukkubus Starchild 4:44
2-9 Sanguis Et Cinis Nicht Mein Schicksal 5:33
2-10 The New Creatures My Child Queen 4:53
2-11 This Burning Effigy Exquisite 4:58
2-12 Hexedene Only Human (Original Mix) 4:30
2-13 Attrition The Thin Veil 6:12
2-14 Louisa John-Krol Alexandria 5:30
2-15 Summoning Angbands Schmieden 3:28

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Conquest, Love and Self-Perseverance – Ordo Equilibrio [#302]

UnknownSome time back I came across an album called Looking For Europe, a compendium of neofolk music from across Europe. This led to a musically investigational journey where I explored the boundaries of dark folk, neo folk, goth and similar genres in a quest to find something to blow my mind.

I found that something in the guise of David Galas but on the journey I acquired a collection of music that haunted my soul. Now, we’ve already met one such band on the music project, Ordo Equitum Solis, a band that had long dissolved itself when I was discovering the genre for myself. But in the hunger for more OES I would grab anything that seemingly sounded similar.

Swedish group Ordo Equilibrio have been described as apocalyptic folk. They’re certainly dark wave and more definitely neofolk in many respects. But I’d say they’re more dark wave than neofolk.

Conquest, Love and Self-Perseverance is their third album on the Cold Meat Industry label, often played on the Aural Apocalypse podcast produced by DJ Merrick and in goth clubs around the world, it has been described as “Music for your satanic cult” and “Music for your S&M dungeon”.

 

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Album # 59 – Aion – Dead Can Dance

220px-Dead_Can_Dance-Aion_(album_cover) Aion – Dead Can Dance

Take one bag of illegal herbal substance.

Add several goths.

Stir with plenty of velvet.

Stew for the duration of the album and you will experience neoclassicalist dark wave at its full.

This was the first DCD album I ever bought following a night at a very wild goth filled party in Liverpool during the 1990s.

Do you know that album people always say changed their lives? Well this is the one for me. Everything musical I’ve bought or downloaded since I heard this album is a direct result of having listened to this album.

Short of wearing black, moping about and smelling of pachulia; listening to Aion is an experience. You’ve more than likely heard most of the tracks anyway on documentaries or in trailers for films involving some sort of  mediaeval jiggery pokery.    Tracks that stand out include Fortune Present Gifts Not According to the Book, Saltarello and Black Sun.

Much like Blood Axis’ Absinthe, this album has accompanied me on trips into somnambulistic realms following surgery or late night meditative chats with Shamen. But not with the added unease that Absinthe brings. Aion is one of those Guardian reader type “Coffee Table” albums like Buena Vista Social Club

So much so, if you want to be a hipster, get this, then tell everyone how dated it is once they too admit to owning a copy.

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