Crepuscular Rituals

Album Title: 
The Shortest Night
Release Date: 
Monday, June 21, 2021
Review Type: 

I have been thinking about how to start the former release, over and over again. The reason: both muSICKians involved – sorry, musicians, I mean. But after re-writing my introduction a couple of times, I thought it would just be fun / honest / easy / clear / whatever… Whatever… I’ll keep it simple and to-the-core…

PS: this introduction was like a copy-paste of the former review, haha.

Anyway, Crepuscular Rituals is, as mentioned in that former review, a mighty collaboration of two human guys who are ‘huge’ within the scene. The project’s moniker is a word-play of ‘crepuscular entity’ and ‘sado rituals’. Probably you know… If not, here’s a short introduction, in case you missed the former one.

(this fragment too is mainly copied and somewhat reinterpreted from my former review as well, because I am too lazy, no, because it deals with the very same information AND right now I do not feel like… Whatever…). Crepuscular Rituals is like a semi-superior conceptual collaboration of two internationally well-known and highly-appreciated guys who are ‘notorious’ within the more open-minded international Noise scene. At the one hand you have US-born / based noisician Ken Jamison, who’s known from the Crepuscular Entity project, as well as outfits like Sonic Defiance (with Ondrey Zintaer), Danshoku Dino and Hana Haruna. He also runs the impressive and extremely productive Noise label Basement Corner Emissions. The other half within Crepuscular Rituals comes from Polish soil, being the mostly sympathetic (un)human being Przemesław ‘Sadox’ Grochowski, known from his unique solo-outfit Sado Rituals or the open-minded Noise-label Gates Of Hypnos.

Earlier this year, Przemesław and Ken started their cooperation as Crepuscular Rituals to celebrate equinoxes / solstices and the continuous changing of the seasons. They formed this tribute to Mother Earth with the intriguing long-form Noisebience work Funeral Of Winter (link for the review: see below). The Shortest Night is the second part of a trilogy (or will it be a tetralogy?), and it does gloriously continue the path once created with Funeral Of Winter. A third has been finished and released very recently, by the way, and will be reviewed too in the near future! This second conceptual part deals with the ‘shortest night’ of each year’s continuation, the kupala, as known in Slavic tradition, also known as the Summer solstice, and seen as a basement for purification on physical / sexual, mental, ritual and / or spiritual measures. Water and fire are strong symbols during these (tribal / archaic) events. Hail to the longest day…

Once again, this album is an extremely lengthy one-piece experience, clocking forty-three minutes. Yeah, it’s shorter than the former one. The cover artwork is taken from an old illustration about that ‘kupala’ night and fits very well, once again, to the whole concept.

From aural point of view, The Shortest Night mainly goes on in the vein of Funeral Of Winter, even though there might be little, very little, more ‘adventure’ going on. It is one long-form experience, based on a minimal and repetitive, yet deeply hypnotic drone (actually, it consists of several layers), with additional ambient lines and droning structures behind it. slowly, extremely slowly, thing evolve, modestly climbing up and growing, and being permanently aroused by subtle additional sounds and noises. Things become slightly rougher and more intense, covering the whole in an atmosphere both mesmerizing and revealing. Every single second actually exceeds any former fragment, every single minute the subtle yet remarkable progression intensifies the sensation.

As said before, there is little more ‘adventurous’ perception. The extremes of static harshness and hypnotic dynamism are more pronounced, strengthening the intoxicating yet elegant efficacy. Actually, the representation of Ritual Noise overwhelms the icy indolence of the former result. The doom of Winter and Spring get overpowered by the increasing heath after a dark, foggy night, you know. The thickened, mechanical-industrialized focus on ritualistic Noise Music works remarkably well in equilibrium with the hypnotic yet somehow scorching ambience.

As said: expect a review on The Final Harvest, the third part, soon…