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Current 93 - Live at Bar Maldoror CD (album) cover


Current 93


Prog Folk

3.45 | 6 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars There's no such place as 'Bar Maldoror'' and it's not live. These are in fact prototype recordings from 1983 from the 'Mi-Mort' session which would eventually morph and improve into the mighty 'Nature Unveiled' recording. More than likely it's an 'in the studio' recording, an early experiment laying foundations for greater things to come.

Annoyingly my 'Durtro' CD has scratchy old vinyl 'snap, crackle and pop' present. How on earth did we cope before the advent of the compact disc? No attempt has been made to remove surface noise. Yet, because of the nature of these sounds it doesn't detract too much.

'Live at Bar Maldoror' sounds like the tormented dead souls of people crying in frustration at being unable to die in peace. It's another of those Apocalyptic and eerie albums that Current 93 were masters at creating in the mid eighties. Dark, bleak and swirling in a thick Victorian fog. It's all very malevolent in that 'Gregorian Hell' vibe that they captured, like lightning in a bottle.

All sounds are loop-tastic swirling around like a whirling dervish where David Tibet spouts his demonic venom and vitriol on this first recorded release by his Current 93 moniker. It's really no wonder they never hit the big time. This is music for a very small audience, most of whom are going straight to hell.

400 years ago David Tibet would have been hung, drawn and quartered for such a blasphemous sound. No, seriously, King James the 1st would have had him on the torture rack stretching his little body to breaking point demanding confession.

It's all entertaining stuff though, despite the crumby recording quality. One of the two bonus tracks - 'Christ's First Howling' uses looped sounds from 'Nurse With Wound's' 'Homotopy to Marie'. That reverberating gong effect used so effectively on the aforementioned album. It's all a bit superfluous and unnecessary though.

Ah well, at least my copy has the ultra creepy pumpkin head painting on the sleeve.

Such a shame then that it's also another of those annoying CD's that was susceptible to disc rot - an oxygen decaying effect on the CD that afflicted many early 90's pressings from this label and sister labels NER (Death in June) and Normal (Coil). So watch out if you're buying a second hand copy. Mine has gold stains around the outer edges but still miraculously plays unhindered, unlike many others.

Dobermensch | 3/5 |


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