Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography



Progressive Electronic

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Coil Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled album cover
5.00 | 4 ratings | 1 reviews | 100% 5 stars

Write a review

Buy COIL Music
from partners
Boxset/Compilation, released in 1990

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Sickness Of Snakes - Various Hands (3:26)
2. Sickness Of Snakes - The Swelling Of Leeches (3:05)
3. Sickness Of Snakes - The Pope Held Upside Down (3:41)
4. Coil & Boyd Rice - His Body Was A Playground For The Nazi Elite (3:29)
5. Coil - Homage To Sewage (2:23)
6. Coil - Here To Here (Double Headed Secret) (4:51)
7. Coil - S Is For Sleep (3:26)
8. Coil - Dream Photography (3:23)
9. Coil - Comfortable (1:41)
10. Coil - Never (4:37)
11. Coil - Penetralia II (3:10)
12. Coil - Sicktone (3:23)
13. Coil - How To Destroy Angels (16:41)

Total Time 57:09

Line-up / Musicians

- John Balance / performer
- Peter Christopherson / performer
- Boyd Rice / performer on tracks 1-4
- Stephen Thrower / performer on track 10

Releases information

Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled
1990 CD Threshold House / LOCI CD2 United Kingdom

Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled 33 rpm, Colored Vinyl, Unauthorized mixtape/DJ mix
Vinyl 12"

Thanks to siLLy puPPy for the addition
Edit this entry

Buy COIL Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled Music

More places to buy COIL music online

COIL Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled ratings distribution

(4 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(100%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(0%)
Good, but non-essential (0%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

COIL Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
5 stars Perhaps one of the strangest and most experimental electronic acts ever to have emerged was the English duo of John Balance and Peter Christopherson, better known as COIL. While initially started as a solo project of Balance while he was in Psychic TV, the project got more sophisticated once former Throbbing Gristle member Christopherson got involved. The project officially began in 1982 but the duo didn't release their first album until "Scatology" was released in 1984, however before the debut came out the two not only crafted the more dance friendly industrial music that was included on the first release, but they were also busy creating some of the most bizarre sonic experiments ever attempted. Most of these tracks never appeared on their albums but were scattered about all over the place. Some on mini-LPs, some on splits, some as singles, some as limited edition releases and others on compilations of various artists releases. Another interesting note is that early pressings are susceptible to disc rot due to some sort of outbreak in the 1990 period. There have been other "performers" who have joined in for a track here and there but basically this was the Balance / Christopherson show.

After COIL released three official albums they started to compile some of all the loose fodder scattered about and the first release of this disparate material appeared in 1990 in the form of UNNATURAL HISTORY: COMPILATION TRACKS COMPILED. The tracks were recorded during the 1983-86 timeline and include not only the classic Balance / Christopherson mind bending electronic surreality as COIL but also include three tracks with Boyd Rice when they were known as Sickness of Snakes which released one EP titled "Nightmare Culture." For anyone who is familiar with the bizarre musical (or not so much so) adventures of COIL, then nothing on this COMPILATION will be overly shocking however this collection provides a interesting historical glimpse into how Balance and Christopherson evolved from making phantasmagoric electronic mind trips that focused on non-melodic or even non-musical experiments with industrial, psychedelia and the avant-garde elements, to how they eventually added bleak and forbidding melodic components.

Much of this should be considered pure noise with tracks like "The Pope Held Upside Down" sounding like a day in hell where demons are having a conversation with Satan in electronic format. Tracks like "Sicktone" have an underlying ambient flow but underneath it sounds like an airplane taking off. Some tracks like "His Body Was A Playground For The Nazi Elite" mix experimental noise pitches that oscillate between notes accompanied by an ominous military march type of percussive drive. "Homage To Sewage" displays a more bleak industrial vibe but makes bands like Einstürzende Neubauten sound like a Disneyland attraction whereas some like "Here To Here (Double Headed Secret)" engage in a minimalist melodic development with the experimentation taking place in freaky echo effects and chilling timbres of the synthesized sounds. While utterly alien in nature none of the tracks exceed the five minute mark with the sole exception of the closing "How To Destroy Angels (mono version)" which at almost seventeen minutes comprises a quarter of the album's running time. This is an alternative version of the track that has been included many other places over time.

I have to give credit to a now deceased friend who turned me on to the bizarre and alienating world of COIL. This COMPILATION was not only my introduction to this unique but daunting experimental artist but was also my gateway drug into the greater world of industrial, dark ambient, drone, noise and experimental electronic music in general, however i have to admit that i really started with one of the most surreal albums i've ever heard even to this day so most music that falls under the umbrella term electronica sounds quite tame in comparison. Even much of COIL's discography is more structured than this freeform assault on the senses that is designed to startle and dismay as it forces you to question the whole notion of what exactly constitutes music in the first place. Perhaps encountering this in the modern era won't prove as awe inspiring since such sound collages have been replicated ad infinitum however even to this day, nothing scratches that avant-garde electronica itch like this first installment of the three UNNATURAL HISTORY COMPILATIONS.

If you by chance are seeking something that has musical and non-musical elements and takes you down the rabbit hole into a darkened tenebrous sonic universe that incorporates aspects of droning, tape loops, minimalism, glitch and chaos all conspiring to create an occult soundtrack into some very bizarre initiation ritual, then you cannot go wrong with this collection of sonic demons that will make you trip without using drugs. COIL utilized some of the craziest methods for conjuring up these sonic entities. They were famous for ritual drug abuse, sleep deprivation, lucid dreaming, granular synthesis and reading tidal shifts as well as implementing occult practices such as scrying, SETI synchronization and chaos theory as their methodology for constructing these very, very weird sonic wonders. This may or may not be something that appeals to your sensibilities but one thing is for sure, you probably have never heard anything like the mesmerizing sequence of sonority that takes place in these thirteen tracks. This is perhaps my most treasured COIL album, not only because it was the first but also the best in its sheer ability to alter my consciousness even after the gazillionth spin.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< o >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Here is the extensive UNNATURAL HISTORY of each track's previous release:

Tracks 1, 2 & 3 were originally released as one half of the Nightmare Culture Mini-LP on LAYLAH Anti-Records (LAY 14), under the group name Sickness Of Snakes. This consisted of John Balance, Peter Christopherson, and Boyd Rice, to whom we owe many thanks for his co-operation and collaboration. Track 4 was originally released on the German Ohrensausen compilation LP in a limited edition of 1000 (500 black, 500 white vinyl) (DOM V77-03). It was recorded at the same 9 hour session as tracks 1, 2 & 3 and also features Boyd Rice. Track 5 was included on Life At The Top, a compilation on Third Mind Records (TMLP07). The track is an out-take from our Scatology sessions. Track 6 was released on a Nekrophile Records compilation cassette called The Beast 666 (NRC03). The track dates from 1983. It also formed the musical base for the Zos Kia song "Rape" which was released as a 7" on All The Madmen Records. Track 7 first appeared on The Elephant Table Album (A Compilation Of Difficult Music) album, a double compilation LP, released by X Tract Records (XX001). Track 8 appeared on a compilation cassette called Peyrere in 1986. It is an early demo track from around the Scatology era. Track 9 was recorded at home by John Balance in 1983. It previously appeared on the limited edition cassette Raw Like Sewage (not in the database yet) on the Premonition label. Track 10 forms part of the soundtrack to Derek Jarman's film "The Angelic Conversation". It first appeared on a cassette called Less Than Angels, a release limited to 100 copies. Track 11 released on a limited 7" single on the Shock 45 (SX002) label. Actually, the track does not appear on Wrong Eye / Scope. Track 12 was previously released on the LAYLAH Anti-Records compilation The Fight Is On. Track 13 is available as a one-sided LP on LAYLAH Anti-Records: How To Destroy Angels (LAY5). It is "Ritual Music For The Accumulation Of Male Sexual Energy"

Latest members reviews

No review or rating for the moment | Submit a review

Post a review of COIL "Unnatural History: Compilation Tracks Compiled"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.