I need this, this is what I need. I ain’t got no freakouts for you today (aaaah ain’t gat no money chaald, but ahh been he-a be-fo!), it’ll just be cool chillin’ rhythm bringing us to the dawn. Because the album hot off the record presses from Wakinyan. If the Dead Skeletons were spooky, and Goat were a native riot in a commune at 500 miles an hour, then Wakinyan is less than both of them, and at the same time spiritually more. The closest comparison could well be with Goat, those astral shamans whose second tape helped us get t’ the west coast in quite a bit of style and really quite fucking fast, in that these are shamanistic rattlings and grumblings and weepings and moanings and singing and drumming and not particularly allied to rock and roll; natural, I think their amplification could be called, using bowl ravines to enhance the volume, singing to the stars, using glass, botanics, hollow tree trunks each with a drummer to turn the forest into a percussive instrument for their own mysterious rituals… wicca, perhaps, Stregheria? Much more likely. Part of a whole new wave of ritualistic and not entirely comprehendable motherfuckers coming out of Deutchland and surrounding areas, there was that album of recordings made in a monastery, the Pharoah Chromium that blew us away a while back, an entire album made of field recordings of the B2 Spirit, an album literally as heavy as the US military. I didn’t write about these in general because while fascinating and deeply spiritually unsettling, I’m not sure they’re of utmost use to the heads, firstly because they are simply too rare and obtuse to honestly recommend to you, and second because they just aren’t useful in a day-to-day capacity enough to warrant mention. This album is much more conventional (it’ll still make yer Little Women sound like Michael Jackson but whatevs) and available as infinite digital download, so dig in and dig it y’all.
Copal Flow is the title, nine songs there be. Incense is the byword, the whole thing is clothed in smoke, you can imagine it filtering through the trees on this palacial natural splendour sound. It trickles, it flows, occasionally it shrieks and hammers and yowls as nature is want to do. Eternally it is unterrifying, even those parts that are frightening or sudden are imbued with that same emotion when one encounters frightening or sudden natural elements, a sense of resignation, of ennui, of everything in its place pervades the fabric of the record on a cellular level. It is deeply calming. I recommend the digital version over the vinyl in point of fact (I’m rocking the digital for the purposes of this review because fuck backrupting myself and waiting weeks for the thing) because you don’t have to get up halfway through to flip it, you can stay placid and unengaged and let the scent wash across you in the most affecting way. The ritual is always enlightening. I haven’t been in possession long enough to confirm, but I’ve got a sense about it, it’s gonna become one of those things, repeated spins will become not just a spiritual necessity but a cardiovascular one. The thrumming beats will become as essential as light.
Intricate emptiness fills the gaps between howling, there’s no energy here, unlike Goat the songs don’t spring from the record and infest the room, they become like incense, ambiance adding to the room in an almost imperceptible way. The tribal drumming quietly rattles yer bones, like horses hooves on time worn cobbled stones. Golden choral voiced female singers laugh, cry, whisper and shout their way through the forest, stopping for far too long between rituals, taking deep inhales of all the scents. Thinking back to previous rituals. Somehow none of it is haunting or disquieting or frightening, even when it all turns to aggressive smiles and the drumming takes on the tempo of a barrow striding darkness howling across the wastes and through the forest and the whispers become darker, accusatory. Ultimate peace is upon me and all, there is nothing to jangle the nerves, no tension; tension washes away if ever there was any. Every listen of this record brings about, through the amorality of nature, a calm I have not before known in the city. I am constantly in search of space, and my search may be momentarily at an end. Everything else comes to an end when this album is set to spinning, everything bleeds away, you become like the forest, calm. The city is bustling, there is no nature, even the grass and the tress are cultivated and cut and trimmed. Nothing grows wild, there is order, and out of total order comes chaos of the mind; a deep disquiet that sits heavily in the stomach like a coiled snake. Relaxation is impossible where nature fears to or cannot tread, and this album is sprouting mushrooms out of my speakers, it’s growing grass wild in the carpet, birds flock to it and the clouds bubble in unnatural ways when it is played. It is a truly spectral and supernatural abyss of a record.
And here you can purchase it yourself, and here's their website for physical needs (including posh vinyl! Get some!).
Written under duress by Steven.