Boomkat Product Review:
What a wild ride this record is - featuring music from a lost tape of devotional keyboard jams, field recordings of migrating birds, mysterious bells, meditative noise and crooked new beat/EBM, made god-knows-when and subsequently discovered in a Thessaloniki charity shop years later. It now somehow finds its way to vinyl, newly mastered by Rashad Becker, and sounding like a lost Hype Williams x Muslimgauze madness. Top of the line weirdo music? A total find!
Originally discovered in a musty charity shop by Live Adult Entertainment, and issued in minuscule numbers on CD in ’21, Christian Love Forum’s raverential debut ‘Naked Light’ documents the fraternal post-church jams of siblings, Scott, Kiro and N•X, plus their mate Steve, who would regularly channel the light and pain of Sunday mass sermons into their ecclesiastic crud.
As previously heard on their blink ’n miss ‘Unconditional Love’ tape, the trio express their higher purpose thru ribboning microtonal keyboard jams that sound like Gurdjieff with a Casio and a knackered drum machine after too much sacramental wine. They hit the strangest, most affective seam of religious cinematic epic soundtracks, gnarled noise and clandestine Belgian new beat that seriously pushes our buttons, sounding quite unlike anything in the contemporary sphere, but eerily also echoing sentiments explored on record by James Leyland Kirby or Bryn Jones.
Now reshuffled and clad in custom artwork, ‘Naked Light’ is unveiled to believers and skeptics as a definitive article of faith. The lord works in mysterious ways within, manifest in stages of sun-bleached post-church field recordings, whirligig melodies, blown-out bouzouki and choral tape howls and a Béla Tarr soundtrack-like campanology on the A-side, before letting their passions flow in ‘Wicked City (Parts I-IV)’; a spellbinding side-long collage of slurred synths, neo-noir hardbeat rhythms and speaking-in-tongues vox recalling V/Vm’s new beat apocrypha as much as bits from Hype Williams’ hypnagogic ‘One Nation’, thee dustiest gooches of Dirk Desaever’s archive, or even aspects of Rat Heart at his cruddiest.
‘Naked Light’ rarely fails to induce uncontrolled eye movement in susceptible skulls, destined to become an occult hit with lapsed churchgoers, new beat fiends and anyone missing the enigma and ineffable flavour of ‘00s underground noise tapes in this auspicious year of AD2023.