TIP OF THE TONGUE 13 APRIL 2014


Ruth White
7 Trumps From The Tarot Cards and Pinions
Black Mass Rising BMR-04
LP
£21.99

Edition of 500 copies reissue of this amazing off-the-wall 1969 dark electronic/psych/weirdo side: White recorded 7 Trumps From The Tarot Cards in 1969 in her own studio using invented or otherwise modified electronics just before her equally-amazing setting of The Flowers Of Evil by Baudelaire that was scored for electronics and her own voice, often Satanically modulated or processed through weird sing-song patches and alien F/X. White’s occult electronics come over as somewhere between the Poetry Out Loud jams, Lothar & The Hand People, Buffy Sainte-Marie's "God Is Alive, Magic Is Afoot" and the oracular tape work of Joan La Barbara and the atmosphere is just massively psychedelic, with aspects of composers like Laurie Spiegel and Eliane Radigue, but with an almost Kenneth Anger soundtrack vibe and a heady ritual feel that could almost be Coil circa Astral Disaster.
White plays her own pitched oscillators, built using bathroom tiles for keys (!), as well as using a primitive rhythm box, a spring reverb unit, hand-cut tape loops, subliminals, backwards F/X and various vocal filters. It’s impossible to classify this amazing side, call it black psychedelia, Kosmische music, avant garde composition, it defies any of these categories, totally transcending its crude DIY genesis with an atmosphere that is deeply occult and an unfolding sense of narrative that is totally gripping. Seven tarot cards are sounded: The Wheel Of Fortune, The Magician, The Hanged Man, The Sun, The Tower, The Lovers and The World while over on the flip she presents an hallucinogenic modular hymn to “A Choreography About Symbolic Flight”. 7 Trumps was originally released as part of a world-beating run from the Mercury Limelight series and was book-ended by Pierre Henry's Mass For Today – The Green Queen, The Percussion Of Strasborg's Signals, Fifty Foot Hose’s Cauldron, Response: Electronic Music From Norway and Pierre Henry’s Variations For A Door And A Sigh. Alright! Fans of Bobby Beausoleil, Nurse With Wound, Ash Ra Tempel, Laurie Spiegel, Coil et al pretty much need to hear this. One of the most unlikely reissues of the year and a big personal favourite. Suffice to say you’ve never heard anything quite like it. Highest possible recommendation!



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