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current 93 - Baalstorm, Sing Omega
It's been a quick turnaround getting from last year's Aleph At Hallucinatory Mountain to this latest Current 93 opus, but Baalstorm, Sing Omega is every bit the major work its predecessor was. Assembling a cast of musicians including James Blackshaw, Alex Neilson, John Contreras, Baby Dee and Andrew Liles, David Tibet is able to summon up a formidable sonic presence. However, Tibet's voice itself is a commanding presence here too, sounding as dynamic, articulated and impassioned as he ever has on record. This album also features some of the most beautiful arrangements heard in Current 93's catalogue for some years, peaking in this respect during 'Passenger Aleph In Name' and the stunning opener 'I Dreamt I Was Aeon', which takes melancholy piano motifs, droning organ work and startlingly lovely string arrangements as a platform for Tibet's dark sermon. '26268' is another brilliant if slightly harrowing entry, threading together rhythmic acid-folk acoustic work from Blackshaw and Contreras' wandering cello melodies as Tibet channels his most sinister high priest persona. Only heightening the eerie atmosphere, you'll hear children's voices joining Tibet at the forefront of the mix, uttering nursery rhymes or dropping lines like "Sing Omega!'. It's all brilliantly creepy. 'I Dance Narcoleptic' concludes the record on a chaotic high, drawing to a finale with a kind of environmentally-sourced static sound - probably the noise made by trees thrashing around in the wind - that helps stir up a monstrous air of menace. Great stuff.