On August 6th Xenoglossy Productions will unite the works of two of its close associates from the realms of raw black metal and dark ambient music — the Italian band Sacrilegious Crown and the Estonian band Illuminated Manuscripts. Those two solo projects have combined forces to contribute two tracks each to a split entitled Meditations on the Revenant Enigma, and Xenoglossy is making it available in an extremely limited cassette tape edition, and digitally.
Today we’re presenting one of the two creations by Sacrilegious Crown, whose most recent EP Plenilunium Cult we premiered and reviewed in March of this year (here). Like that EP, it is devoted to the creation of atmosphere, and it ushers the listener into an inhuman realm.
In its opening phase, “Tenebra I – The Profound Secret of Eternity” proceeds with a steady marching drum beat shrouded in murky, distorted riffing that radiates like a shivering haze. Ghostly ethereal tones echo across the top, and wretched screams expel the lyrics. A slow, grief-stricken melody slides through the murk, deepening the music’s atmosphere of gloom and dread.
And then, after a pause, the music’s pulse quickens with acoustic strumming, which itself sounds like it’s coming from a far-away place, perhaps another dimension. And with another pause a ringing arpeggio leads the song back into an even slower and more dismal march, the vocals even more frightening in their extremity. The guitar chimes like a plague bell, as if making way for a cart laden with rotting corpses.
And now, a few hints about what else awaits you on this forthcoming split:
The second track prepared by Sacrilegious Crown, “Tenebra II – Wandering Through the Ancient Mountains“, is a fashioning of dungeon synth that sounds completely untethered from what passes for the real world. As this sonic collage ebbs and flows, it becomes terrifically haunting and ultimately frightening.
By contrast to the tracks of Sacrilegious Crown, the songs of Illuminated Manuscripts on the split are utterly nightmarish. “Ghouls In Fiery Pillars” sounds calamitous, presenting a dense audio amalgamation that generates a ghastly vision of apocalyptic upheaval and terror. Though there are moments that resemble the playing of a string quartet on the deck of the sinking Titanic, the track is no more tethered to reality than the music of Sacrilegious Crown. And, if anything, the second track, “Palace of Ghastly Leeches“, is even more horrific and infernal.
Xenoglossy will release the split as a digital download and on high grade black cassette tape in an edition limited to 25 hand-numbered copies. (Don’t delay – those won’t last long.)