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The Horn – The Ancient Egyptian Book….


Last Updated on 04:13 PM by Giorgos Tsekas

written by Τhe Anchorite

The Horn – The Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead Volume Fifteen

Genre: Industrial Black Metal
Country: Australia
Label: Christfucker Records
Year : 2016

The phenomenon of hyper-productive bands and projects is very interesting one. Entering metal archives and seeing a huge discography with over 2-3 releases a year, creates a feeling of mystery and awe, the image of a musician (most of them are one-man bands) following a personal vision with a kind of maniacal fanaticism, even if its existence might be totally impervious to the general audience. Perhaps a kind of esoteric quest, or self-psychotherapy through art.  In reality, however, the quality of such projects shows a lot of ups and downs, technically they are often characterized by amateurish home production and finally, quite seldom does an album among their discography stand out. Some really special ones that deserve to be mentioned though (in the “extreme” area of metal that interests me) are Jute Gyte, Gnaw Their Tongues, Benighted in Sodom, Njiqahdda, Umbah and obviously Leviathan and Xasthur too, in their early days.

So, The Horn is actually comprised of one member, called A Demon Sheen, and his project numbers 15 releases, most all of them entitled as “The (Ancient) Egyptian Book of the Dead”. It must be quite apparent that this project has a very specific reason of existence, which is to provide a soundtrack (all lyrics are taked directly from the book) and channel the imaginations of his creator concerning the fore-mentioned, well-known book. The sound of The Horn is based in black metal; a drum machine that doesn’t make any effort to hide what it is, providing thusly a kind of industrial aesthetic that is similar to the one of Mysticum, some of the most satisfying dirtiest guitars I’ve heard lately (again, making no effort to hide their digial fuzziness) often playing in eastern modes, and vocals that sound either evil or regal, according to one’s point of view.

However, metal is just one of the different parts that make up the project’s sound. There is a multitude of elements used throughout the songs that support the concept, thereby conjuring the image of an Ancient Egypt, mirred in mysticism. Middle eastern acoustic instruments, ritualistic sounds and noises, processed vocals and pompous utterances, ambient keyboards, even a violin is often used. It is the originality and depth in the use of these elements that differentiates The Horn from a lot of other efforts in a similar vein, and in general the quality of the production and mix, which again alludes to the industrial scene, because of a tendency to “dirty up” every sound with distortion.

It is quite rare lately that an underground, unknown project will force me to keep my attention on it for the whole duration of its album.  This 15th entry to the personal catalogue of A Demon Sheen’s musical interpretations of The Book of the Dead, proves that it is time for this project to be discovered by a wider audience. And now, there are 14 more albums for me to explore.


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