We have fled from the shroud of deception that you have draped across the ruins of our traditions, your subtle twisting of the holy words and gestures that have sustained us through an eternity of winters. Here, beneath the trees, on hard ground cleared of snow we shall find our burning gateway to redemption. We Old Believers see the devil in your details, how S….. crawls serpent-like in the shadows of your obfuscation. I see the end of all things in your distorted presentation of the cross and so I take myself, my children and my love, into the flames.
As we burn I sense that heaven is near, just beyond the pain, and in the screams of my little ones I hear the voices of angels. I make the sign of the cross – two fingers raised, not three – and drink deeply of the smoke; inhaling our immolation and salvation.
Goatpsalm and Horthodox are brothers in spirit, both explorers of the darkness. Goatpsalm wander through the lost and forgotten dreams of fallen civilisations, the obscure knowledge of past days and broken gods, while Horthodox pierce the shadows cast by the many arcane rituals and impenetrable words of Christian orthodoxy. In one moment of history their paths met, joined and entwined…and Ash was born. The Raskol, or schism, of the Russian Orthodox Church in the 17th Century, when the Zealots Of Piety clashed with the Old Believers and families fled their homes and even walked into fire as they saw the end of the world approaching. This sundering of a nation was brought about by such small twists in doctrine as how many hallelujahs it was proper to pronounce in honor of their god.
Together, Goatpsalm and Horthodox have invoked the spirit of that age, the weight of centuries of faith, the mysteries bound within the practices of religion and the binding power of words and inherited belief. Both time and place are captured in the meditative, hypnotic echoes of ‘Here Is Our Salvation’…an unsettling presence nestles in the wailing pipes of ‘God Remained Still’. This is a haunted album that summons the ghosts of past generations to gather around the firelight and hear its tale. Such compelling power resounds in the captivating tones of A House With No Windows and the souls of those who embraced the flames for their god drift on the cold winds of ‘Night Over Onega’. Wonderful implements like the Rozhok, an ancient, wooden Russian horn and the Gusli, one of the oldest of all stringed instruments, related to the zither, help to bring transporting atmosphere to an album like no other. Incredibly affecting and utterly remarkable, Ash is something beyond our everyday experience – a gift for which we should be immensely grateful.
Despite the splendor of both Goatpsalm and Horthodox’s individual back catalogues, this marriage between the two occult forces has created something even greater than the sum of its parts. When Ash is released on six panel digipack by Aesthetic Death and cassette by Death Scream Recordings, both on October 1st, it will consume you; draw your soul inexorably into its world of forest, firelight and shadow. Step back in time with Goatpsalm and Horthodox, peer beneath a veil of secrets and taste the darkness of utter and absolute devotion.
Horth – Synths / Sampling
Sadist – Acoustic Guitars / Bass
Sever – Bowed Strings
Nubiferous – Gusli / Rozhok / Flute
Vaarwel – Guitars (Rhythm / Lead)
FFO Wardruna, Grift, Impyrium and Dordeduh and FFO of dark folk metal and atmospheric doom metal.