…Of the Wolves: Baptists and Bootleggers
When music meets art meets literature meets a clip of a 1930s silent movie version of a 14th century poem, to be frank, I’d usually call the police or hide in a cupboard until the whole thing had gone away. But this time, after hearing the music part of this cultural convergence, I’m positively salivating for the rest.
So, Baptists & Bootleggers (FB page, Website) are a new not-for-profit label from Manchester who’ve asked a bunch of musicians, visual artists, and writers to give a soundtrack to and interpretation of an eight minute clip of a 1930s film of Dante’s Inferno plus quotes from the original work itself. And the music, which we’ve been lucky enough to have sent us, is as dark, menacing and devilishly diabolic as you can imagine. The album (…Of the Wolves) is a lesson in how to imagine the sound of hell and all its torments.
Borland’s ‘Nightmares’ is menacing and colossal in its drone, and delivers beats that enslave you to the callings of unholy legions. Vei’s ‘Decaying Bodice’ take this eternal distress, colour it with the celestial tone of falling angels and continually remind you of your unending anguish with the sound of icy rattles. Daffyd Jones’ ‘When The Game Is Over, the King & the Pawn Go Back In The Same Box’ adds a reading of Dante’s work in a vocodered robotic voice transforming something old into something horrifically contemporary – the next time you hear “Cashier Number Two Please” in a bank or supermarket I would bet on visions of flames and demonic laughter filling your psyche after hearing this. By the point that the abstract lurching punk-prog-metal of Go Lebanon’s ‘Ishtar y Tammuz’ appears in your ears there’s almost a sense of relief…almost, as the outro (on the vinyl version) by Kyknos is designed as locked groove. You’re never to be set free.
It’s, in short, utterly brilliant and practically knocked me off my chair the first time I heard it.
Baptists & Bootleggers are launching this album on the 9th February at Islington Mill. You’ll get a free copy of the vinyl or CD which come with different bits of art and all sorts of lovely packaging and stuff. Plus Vei, Borland and Go Lebanon live sets.
And surprise surprise I can’t bloody go. So you should.
A video excerpt featuring Go Lebanon’s contribution:
Some tunes from Vei from whom you get a free bonus EP with the vinyl: