6 Organs of Admittance
The Manifestation is one of the ultimate rock paradoxes: it’s a hippie epic. By definition, hippies are too lazy, dirty and drug-addled to focus their creative energies on anything longer than a quick game with The Hack, and yet The Manifestation exists with over twenty minutes of sprawling grandeur. The song kicks off with subterranean tremors that give way to Jew’s harp, bongos and a peyote haze of acoustic guitar, while head Organ Ben Chasny and Jennifer Juniper Stratford offer up communal spells and recitations. The acid hits full effect, and the song does a 180 as nature takes a back seat to astral plane exploration with an oscillating synth and chilly ambient chimes. A sort of nirvana is reached somewhere around the 17-minute mark when, amidst sparse John Fahey-esque acoustic guitar heartbeats, all sound drops out.
The original vinyl edition of this track featured a “primitive etching” of the sun on the b-side. For the second song on this release, Chasny took a copy of the vinyl and recorded the pops and crackles of the “sun” side as it played on a turntable. The stream of skips acts as a full sonic partner with Chasny’s flourishing fingerstyle. David Tibet of Current 93 pops up out of nowhere and stands alone at the center of the chaos, reciting surreal poetry on the nature of things. It’s a very cool concept in theory and delivery. I used to think that hippies were only useful for bearing the weight of the world’s ridicule, but this disc is impressive enough to convince me they’re also good for turning out great rock records every thrity years or so –the last being Jefferson Airplane’s Surrealistic Pillow — which means I’ll probably be dead, or at least wholly uninterested, by the time number three rolls around.
Strange Attractors: www.strange-attractors.com