The Self Immolation Rite
~reviewed by Goat
An ironic sidenote to start the review. When I put this in my CD player, the player identified it as the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra’s “The Many Sounds of Christmas”. Truth is so much stranger than fiction could ever hope to be.
While I disagree personally with most of the tenets the philosophical aspects the album are based on or were gleaned from, I can see that if I were someone who adhered to or put myself in alignment with those tenets, this work would be valuable to me philosophically as well as sonically.
Even with the inherent disagreement, I can also see where this work could be used effectively as a meditation tool by people who aren’t particularly in agreement with Illuminist, Satanic, etc. ideals. The journey through these sounds could be cleansing for anyone, and, the artist who participated in the project makes this distinction very clear, which I appreciated.
I suppose the best way to describe the thing is to simply call it a descent into hell, or an ascent into an outer space so brutal it might as well be hell.
It’s not something one would generally “chill out” to, but more something someone would, as the title suggests, burn away one’s mental drosses to.
The layers and levels of sound here are exciting and interesting through-out. Experimental electronics sometimes tend towards a sort of “noodling” that can cause even the most attentive listener to drift. Not so this. While there is a dark ambience to it, it’s an active darkness that engages the mind to follow through to the end of the journey. This sense of journey or motion is what I like best about this work. I feel each time I listen to it, I learn something; about myself, if nothing else. I learn what frightens, what annoys, and in the end, having had my nerves and senses tested, awakened, I am left at the silence in the end with the wonderful sensation that I am alive!
Very much recommended to psychonauts, those who enjoy the cleansing aspects of dark electronica, fans of all the various journeys through darkness, and all the artwork and literature which surrounds them.
As far as I can tell, there is no track listing for this album. One does not miss it, as the artwork and liner notes in the booklet are invigorating. Who needs track listings?!?!