CD: Divine Comedy DC 041 [2005]
Ltd x 500

Kazanie Ogniste I
Magic From The Hyacinth Garden
To Carthage
Kazanie Ogniste II
A Handful Of Dust
Horologium Mundi

There’s a line I wrote in the review of the Moljebka Pvlse / Horologium - "Kaukasus" split release (read here) that went: ‘Horologium. A new act to me but I recently bought their ‘The Fire Sermon’ release on the Divine Comedy label and was very impressed to say the least. Quite an exceptional recording which deserves a glowing review if one was ever to be written.’ As it happened…isn’t that the way of things…I got asked if I would review "The Fire Sermon" a week later so here is that glowing review.

Before getting to the meat of the recording just a quick bit of information needs to be imparted for anyone not aware of this fine act. My public service to you all. Horologium is the work of one man called Grzegorz Siedlecki who may be familiar to you through his work with Totenhaus. "The Fire Sermon" is his first full release as this project although there is a CDR available called "A Handful of Dust" and of course the afore mentioned split release with Moljebka Pvlse and various compilation appearances and many more releases to come during 2006.

"The Fire Sermon" is inspired by Nietzsche's thoughts, Stirner's egoism and Sartre's pessimism and musically based on T S Elliot‘s "The Waste Land" (way over the top of this bald head of mine) although it possibly means something to the more intellectual amongst you. Philosophy…in whatever form…and I are not best suited to each other. Forgoing any discussion on the merits or otherwise of where the inspiration for this recording comes from the only thing that concerns me is the music and whether or not it rocks my boat. "The Fire Sermon" capsized my puddle hopper with a blend of music that can only be described as past Industrial Experimental Ethnic Ambient with neo folk / classical flourishes. Which when looked at written down will cause slight frowns because theory states that this mixture is surely doomed for failure. Which of course is why theories are there to be blown apart and reassembled accordingly. The predominate musical genre within this recording, and there has to be one, is that of ‘experimental’ where Grzegorz seems most at home with. Within these eight tracks he takes the very abstract nature of music and throws the rule book out the window by making his sonic collages an intriguing mixture of art concrete and exquisitely rendered tunes which have so much hidden depths to them. Rhythms are allowed to flow against a back drop of spatial noise, sounds are looped into a tune…reminding me of The Severed Heads… there are bursts of machine ambient and some utterly great chants over fiery violins…and…and… and…there’s just so much to discover that part of the enjoyment of ‘The Fire Sermon’ is trying to second guess where the music will go next. Don’t try though is my advice to you. Let the music transport you where you least expect it. Grzegorz goes to places where others fear to tread.

What ultimately sets this work apart is the accessibility of it all. That so many differing aural strands can be combined effortlessly without alienating the listener is in itself a triumph of the will on the part of Grzegorz and one for which the discerning daring music aficionado will appreciate and covet.


[Horologium] / [Divine Comedy]

Direct Link: http://www.auralpressure.com/review/h/horologium_the_fire_sermon.html

Other Reviews:

Moljebka Pvlse & Horologium : [Kaukasus]

Our Divine Comedy Page