PODCAST: The Forest Passage 21: The Krampus with Al Ridenour

Host Raul Antony is joined by Al Ridenour, author of “The Krampus and the Old Dark Christmas”. We discuss the historical threads that led up the Krampus, how the creature was introduced to American culture, the 2015 horror film, and Ridenour’s history with the Cacophony Society. We also talk about Neofolk and Heathen Culture as it relates to world of the Krampus, including a surprising connection to one of our favorite artists at Heathen Harvest.

Listen to the podcast and more from The Forest Passage at Heathen Harvest.

With the appearance of the demonic Christmas character Krampus in contemporary Hollywood movies, television shows, advertisements, and greeting cards, medieval folklore has now been revisited in American culture. Krampus-related events and parades occur both in North America and Europe, and they are an ever-growing phenomenon. Though the Krampus figure has once again become iconic, not much can be found about its history and meaning, thus calling for a book like Al Ridenour’s The Krampus: Roots and Rebirth of the Folkloric Devil. With Krampus’s wild, graphic history, Feral House has hired the awarded designer Sean Tejaratchi to take on Ridenour’s book about this ever-so-curious figure. Al Ridenour has lectured on Krampus at the Goethe Institutes in Los Angeles. He became somewhat of an internet phenomenon himself due to the hilarious hijinks he coordinated with the controversial Cacophony Societies.

PODCAST: The Forest Passage 20: Napoleonic Synths (Ostara, Gost, Perturbator & More)

We discuss the latest release from OSTARA, GOST and the upcoming PERTURBATOR tour, dungeon synth from Рабор (RABOR), the long-awaited Greek Black Metal release from AGATUS, and blackened-synth-death from LAMENT CITYSCAPE + THEOLOGIAN. We also contacted several DANNY HYDE contest winners: Adam Czarnecki, Christopher Ashbrook & Stanley Kindly. Check your Facebook message requests to make sure you don’t miss out. We’re also experimenting with moving to SoundCloud, as we’ve experienced some quality issues when uploading directly to WordPress.

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PODCAST: The Forest Passage 19: Siberian Retro (Fight Your Own War, Perturbator)

After a hectic month of projects and work we return to talk about what we’ve been listening to and watching. Jesse discusses two Russian bands, Nordavind & Volkolak, while Raul takes it back to the neo-retro synthwave sounds of Perturbator, and industrial from JK Flesh & Aderlating. We also talk about the show Stranger Things, the 80’s throwback trend in culture, the new book power electronics book “Fight Your Own War”, and Jesse’s hatred of saxophones.

Power electronics is a genre of industrial or ‘noise’ music that utilises feedback and synthesizers to produce an intense, loud, challenging sound. To match this sonic excess, power electronics also relies heavily upon extreme thematic and visual content— whether in lyrics, album art, or live performance. It is a genre that often invites strong reactions from both listeners and critics, if not dismissed or ignored altogether. FIGHT YOUR OWN WAR is the first ever English-language book primarily devoted to power electronics, bringing together essays and reviews that explore the current state of the genre, from early development through to live performance, listener experience, artist motivation, gender and subcultures, such as ‘Japanoise’.

From Heathen Harvest’s review of Uncanny Valley:

This is what makes the French synthwave project Perturbator unique and successful: its unabashed, arms-wide-open acceptance and reappropriation of eighties aesthetics and tropes without the hint of irony or parody. Perturbator stands out in the synthwave scene not just because of its technical music acumen, but also for the unapologetic embrace of these tropes. In unskilled hands, the results would come off as camp or comedic. Instead, Perturbator successfully mixes the cultural milieu of eighties cyberpunk, anime, dark synth music from the likes of John Carpenter or low-budget films such as Future-kill (1985), occultism, neo-noir, and tech-noir. The end results come off as not only dead serious, but incredibly engaging and surprisingly relevant to today’s societal woes.

Listen to the podcast at Heathen Harvest.

PODCAST: The Forest Passage 18: Danny Hyde Interview

Often referred to as “the secret third member of Coil”, Danny Hyde recounts his memories working with John Balance and Peter Christopherson on some of their most groundbreaking releases, including Love’s Secret Domain, Horse Rotorvator, and the infamous NIN remixes. Mr. Hyde discusses the controversial decision to release Backwards, reproducing the NIN remixes for Recoiled, and Trent Reznor’s involvement with recording Backwards in Nothing Studios. Danny Hyde also talks about his own projects (Aural Rage & Electric Sewer Age), modern electronic music and getting in touch with his Celtic roots.

Danny Hyde would like to reach out to our audience and have them send him recommendation to help him get back into contemporary industrial music. Leave a comment below or on social media recommending some of your favorite releases for Mr. Hyde, in particular music inspired by his work. We’ll pick out 2 contributors to receive a release featuring Danny Hyde.

From Heathen Harvest’s review of Coil’s Backwards:

The mythical “lost album” from Coil finally found its way to the public twenty-three years later, thanks to the work of Danny Hyde and Cold Spring Records. Coil has long been a band that, in certain specific ways, I have loved and cherished, but in similar fashion, they have also been a confounding project with almost too many releases, reissues, collaborations, and remixes to catalog and digest. I suppose that works to my benefit, having never heard the 2008 version of The New Backwards.

Listen to the podcast and more from The Forest Passage at Heathen Harvest.

PODCAST: The Forest Passage 17: Judgements and Juries (Raflum, Batushka)

Having been a month since our last episode we get caught up on what we’ve been up to since then. Your hosts have a few drinks while talking about experiences with the US jury system, getting over kicking boxing injuries, and discuss recently published reviews on Heathen Harvest, Black Ivory Tower, and Nine Circles. We discuss Chinese folk band Raflum, the challenge of meaningful power electronics, Batushka’s orthodox troubles in Russia and what that means to black metal as adversarial music, and more.

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PODCAST: The Forest Passage 16: Echoes From Siberia (Isa)

Spring has arrived and, appropriately, this latest podcast episode is a doozie. The Siberian folk/metal/darkwave band Isa has been so kind to grant us the opportunity to premiere two of their brand-new songs. In addition, we can also reveal more information about their upcoming new album –titled Echo– including the cover art featured below. Isa may still be an obscure name in the international underground, but seeing as both their previous album and a split they appeared on made it into my top 3 of 2015, this is THE band to watch when it comes to new talent emerging from the Eastern scene. In this podcast, we take you through Isa’s work so far, introduce you to their new songs and discuss the guiding themes. Yep, it’s Spring alright!

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PODCAST: The Forest Passage 15: Osuna y Leña Interview

In our latest episode we take another trip down interview lane. This time our victims are Antonio Espinosa and Francisco Fernández of the Colombian folk/post-rock band Osuna y Leña. Our conversation touches upon such topics as the difference between this new project and their metal formation Cóndor, their use of the Spanish and Galician languages, the paradox of international recognition preceding local fame, their first live show, and the tragedy of having to bail on a Snoop Dogg concert. So start sippin’ on Gin & Juice and join La Raza in this latest episode of The Forest Passage.

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