Sunday, June 5, 2011

Giles Corey - "Giles Corey" (2011) [Enemies List Home Recordings]

Sometime in the Spring of 2009 I tried to kill myself. Six months before that, I used a Voor's Head Device for the first time. -Dan Barrett

Ghosts live among us, that is to say, they exist among us. That is the message of this album; both planes of existence are simultaneous but imperceptible. Those on the other side long for contact; to touch another, to scream, to feel pain, but they do not, they cannot. This album/book combination encapsulates that feeling of loneliness on both sides of this plane of existence, for, while the afterimages of life long to live, we long to know what is on that other side, whether it be to know our loved ones are still "out there" somewhere or just to experience what "death" truly is.

As an album and entire 150-page book brought on by a suicide attempt, this is not for the faint of heart. Teetering on the brink between existential depression and a crippling, maddening desire for the end, these nine songs range from the simple heartache of "Sleeping Heart" to the screaming, frightening climaxes of "The Haunting Presence" or "Buried Above Ground." It is beautiful, soul-wrenching, questioning, horrifying, longing. It is. The product of two years of lonely nights, looking just over the edge, Giles Corey is one of the most intensely personal albums I have ever heard. You won't hear anyone else performing on this album other than Barrett, but, if you listen closely, you can hear samples of supposed recordings of spectres, reaching out through this very album, trying to make contact, however brief, with this world once more.

This dreamy, folk-inspired album has been more than worth the wait, and those of you who have only heard the songs Barrett shared for free on will definitely be surprised at how much further the crippling sadness found in those songs is taken on this album. Simple, profound, extreme, frightening, calming, Giles Corey is definitely a contender for one of the most impressive and moving albums of 2011. Paired with the book (which I'll let you read for maximum profundity), it is obvious that Dan Barrett is one of the most talented artists of this generation, in case you couldn't already tell from his efforts with Have A Nice Life.

You are alone in this world, and yet you are not.

Order this album, and many more, at Enemies List Home Recordings.


1 comment:

  1. Nice review, Jon.

    "You are alone in this world, and yet you are not." I thought the same thing when I listened to the album today.


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