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Halo Manash - Language of Red Goats

For their fourth release this Finnish esoteric outfit have stripped back their primary sound source to organic instrumentation including horns, singing bowls and gongs, augmented by electronics to create a raw and serene ritual formed from three tracks. I'm not familiar with their previous material but have heard their work on the collaborative project Aural Holograms. There are slight similarities but whereas that release added ritual flourishes to its largely drone based movements Language of Red Goats is a delicate ritual piece intended for dream vigils and awakenings.

The first track creates a haunting ritual soundscape comprising spartan reverbed gong, accompanied by the sound of metal bowls. Subtle shifts lead to the rattling of metal objects, the billowing of a horn and slight touches of electronic treatments. By the second track there's the constant chatter of rattling percussion, and windchimes and subtle, shifting electronic hums and slight pulsating tones bowing out on a series of shudders. It all unfolds quite naturally to the point that it takes on the feel of an environmental field recording. There's nothing jarring or out of place, just pure rhythm and drone. It's this elemental approach that allows you to drift off while remaing focussed on the percussive effects. The third track burrows deeper into electronic territory to the point the cavernous electronics take on a dark ambient form. The hypnotic structures remain though with continued interplay of gongs and clanging percussion. It takes upwards of two minutes for the final drones to slip into silence.

Obvious reference points would be Zero Kama, Z'ev but due to the sparseness of sound I'm reminded of the ritual musick of Coil's How To Destroy Angels. The entire thing has a calming and mysterious allure, and even though it rarely clamours for attention this is a particularly effective release. Language of Red Goats is released in a hand-printed foldout cardboard sleeve in an edition of 920 copies on the Finnish label Aural Hypnox. For more information go to