Sopor Aeternus – “The Spiral Sacrifice” Album Review

SoporNot for the faint of heart.  If you are familiar with the work of Sopor Aeternus, you know what I’m talking about.  Nevertheless, we are very pleased to let you know about the new release, The Spiral Sacrifice.  

From Fantotal.de….“one of the last of the very few dark groups/projects in Europe who have based the sacred trinity of their music, poetry & visual appearance on the explicit emphasis of the highly individual expression of pain, isolation, depression, and the desperate search for the »sacred reunion«; all conceived and acted out by SOPOR’s sole protagonist: the transgendered and utterly beautiful Goddess ANNA-VARNEY CANTODEA.”

After a successful crowdfunding campaign, and in typical Sopor Aeternus fasion, Anna-Varney Cantodea gives us a stunningly beautiful album both aesthetically and sonically.  If you were a part of the pre-order/crowdfunding, you were one of the ones lucky enough to get your hands on either the cassettes, colored vinyl or shirts.  Fortunately, other editions remain.

Nevertheless, Sopor Aetherus delivers 19 tracks that once again provide an introverted exploration into the human heart and psyche the depths of which might be found by the majority of us to be downright frightening.

Musically speaking, Sopor Aeterus’s approach is as it has always been; that is, a very pure, organic and intimate approach through the use of a small variety of wind and string instruments as well as the occasional acoustic drums.  However, the standout instruments have always been the hammered dulcimer and harpsichord.  

Sopor Aeternus once again with The Spiral Sacrifice crafts compositions that incorporate the neo-classical, gothic, medieval and the other-worldly to create a sound that is can only be owned by Anna-Varney Cantodea.  There’s simply nothing else like her.  Period.  Previous Sopor albums always musically reflected the “individual expression of pain, isolation, depression” but there’s something going on with The Spiral Sacrifice that is both hard to pin-point and strangely unique.  

In such cases as “In The Old House (We Made Out Well)” we hear an oddly whimsical and in a strange way, uplifting feel.  That track is an excellent example of how some Sopor songs can be slightly complex while using most of the instruments at hand.  A more twisted, darkened, romantic cabaret sound can be heard in tracks like “Where The End Begins” or “Ein freundlich’ Wort Einst unverhofft”   There are quite a few instrumental pieces on The Spiral Sacrifice; perhaps more-so than usual but that allows us to shift focus from Anna’s wonderfully unique voice temporarily to the music itself.

The Spiral Sacrifice might be Sopor Aeternus’s best work yet.  But while opinions are subjective, Ms. Cantodea speaks to her own pain and isolation as well as the universal emotions most of us are afraid to address.  Very highly recommended.

The Spiral Sacrifice is available as a special CD/Book edition and 3LP vinyl edition.  As is the case with all of Sopor Aeternus albums, there is an incredible amount of care and pride taken in the presentation of these pieces.  Check the link for Fantotal.de.  The only information we have about a digital release at this time is through Itunes.

And Anna… if you are reading this, you have an open invite for an interview at any time.

Tracklisting CD

  1. Everything is an Illusion
  2. Where the End begins
  3. There are Scars in the Evening Sky
  4. The broken & shattered Moon
  5. I cannot go back to the Way I was
  6. In the Company of Beasts
  7. When you love a Man
  8. Through the Forest wondrously
  9. By the Waters of Forgetfulness
  10. Ein freundlich’ Wort einst unverhofft
  11. I am done with Men
  12. Sometimes you make me smile
  13. At Sunset through the Fields aflame
  14. In the old House (we made out well)
  15. Light in the Attic
  16. If I could go back in Time
  17. I am so glad it’s over
  18. Let me say it now
  19. Through your Eyes

https://www.fantotal.de/en/artist/sopor-aeternus.htmldownload
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-spiral-sacrifice/1324956685
http://www.soporaeternus.de/
https://soporaeternus.bandcamp.com/

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