Seven Rivers of Fire – Way of the Pilgrim

Cassette, Dub Cthonic, 2022

“Way of the Pilgrim” unfolds as a 4-movement suite of dark acoustic summoning rituals, spiritually connected to a mystical lineage of wyrd-folk practitioners through the ages. That strangely familiar feeling of being lost in the woods, of venturing into the archetypal unknown, pervades the atmosphere right from the opening of “They are Calling // Exodus”. Tangled acoustic guitar improvisations get tenser and tenser over an eerie synthesizer drone and spectral voices, evoking the possessed early works of Six Organs of Admittance or Jack Rose. After the treacherous & nervous venturing of this 11-minute opener, “Awaken // The Passenger” surrenders to a more hypnotic zone. Slow harmonium pumping over periodic singing bowl and devotional vocal drones recall the ominous but meditative trance ceremonies of Fursaxa. Processed field recordings of howling wolves remind us that danger lurks in the distance even in peaceful, revelatory moments. The cassette’s b-side gets deeper into sylvan, black lodge surrealism with “From the Depths // Into the Woods”. A persistent wood knock and wordless chanting form a portal-opening ceremony, where processed field recordings and cut-up beastial voices represent spirits and daemon’s in an inter-dimensional struggle to come through. “Ascend // The Fall” serves as an airy but transcendent finale, a nocturnal counterpoint to the modal piano improvisations of Robbie Basho. The cascading keys and swells of vocal harmonies induce a weightless catharsis, momentarily transcending physical limitations and the spirit of the times, before descending back into its grip, transformed.

Style: Wyrd Folk, Ritual Ambient, Free Folk, Drone

Mood: Forest, Nocturnal, Witchy, Ritualistic, Meditative, Suspenseful, Shadowy, Pantheistic, Alchemical, Mysterious, Eerie

Instrumentation: Acoustic guitar, Harmonium, Bells, Vocals, Chanting, Drum, Field Recordings, Piano

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