The Devil & The Universe – Folk Horror (Aufname + Wiedergabe)

  Van Muylem    26 september 2017

In a very short time Ashley Dayour managed to record 3 albums with 3 different projects. First one on my review list is this one. I lost a bit the number of reviews I did with the participation of Ashley, but fact is that he has never disappointed me.

With this project (joined by David Pfister and Stefan Elsbacher) you never know what to expect, except you are sure it is something special. The first song Alchemical Landscape sounds a bit like the devilish version of Dead Can Dance: dark, scary, dense and haunting inferno. Willow Dance is already a bit different, has a faster tempo and is more electronic. It has something hypnotic. When it’s over it feels a bit like as if the silence is killing you. The AshTree has nice guitars in it, giving it a bit of a retro touch. The mood sounds pretty scary, just like the crows in the background. A Friend In The Furrow has more scary animals in it and something that sounds like a ritual march. The percussion is leading. To me it’s clear that you can’t play this when you are all alone during dark winter days, because it will scare the shit out of you. Black Harvest has a more tribal minded approach with still some darkness in it, enforced by the synths and the percussions. The electronics give it a possible shot during parties, if at least the DJ has the guts to try it out. Wyrd has clearly a dark folk touch, with the Goat behind the desk prepping us for another dark ritual whilst performing scary tunes, marching towards our death? The Church of The Goat has some cello leading us slowly but surely into the darkness. The electronics give it a wider sound, whilst the percussion is bringing more darkness. I have no clue where the vocals are taken from but it must have been coming from a very scary and old movie (The Wicker Man?) as they render the mood in a very fitting way. Towards the end we even get some techno feel. It sounds pretty innovative for a dark ritual song like this one. Christina Lessiak is the woman who sings in the last part, whilst the percussion sounds like clapping hands. And yes, that might work during live shows. When We Where Trees is already the last track: again a very dark and scary tune with lots of field noise. It’s clear that we are in a horror movie and something very bad is going to happen, as the tension rises. Once again the percussion plays an important role in the setting. It’s the end, but we know that 2 more albums are coming. What a creative mind!

Fans of dark ritualistic folk will be very pleased with this new chapter and I just can’t wait to see him back on stage and why not with the 3 projects on the same stage, as happened in the past with 2 of his projects. It’s clear that the future looks bright in a dark and shady way!