01 Horus Calling
02 Gently Johnny
The ever-mystical The Green Man has been a meeting ground of various occult and spiritual traditions since their inception. From one moment to the next a pagan rite, a Gnostic text, or a Thelemic allusion are bound to appear and then disappear to make room for the next. Without getting too deep into specific occult philosophies, recognize that this is one band who actually knows exactly what they are talking about! The enigmatic Italians are just as aurally multifaceted as their metaphysical pursuits.
A devil-may-care blend of neofolk, Eastern music, psychedelia, prog rock elements, traditional folk meld in order to execute this collective will and attain a higher purpose. From ancient Arabia to Summerisle to the Dead Sea, the roots of the Western mystery traditions have been covered. The Green Man has gained the wisdom they needed from their atavistic exploration and are now looking to the future.
“Do what thou will shall be the whole of the law” according to Aleister Crowley’s Thelemic doctrine, and The Green Man never deviate from the law on their transitionary offering “Horus Calling”. Two tracks of the band’s signature blend of sound craft this CD-r/Maxi Single, each with its own direction and intent. Extremely limited pressings are the result of an odd decision and must have a significance all their own. Some bands press 666 or 777 copies in order to further their outwardly projected agendas. Horus Calling strangely has an initial pressing of 31, and then later a special second edition of 62. At first glance this is a comically low run, but those with eyes to see and ears to hear will see through the mystery. 31 + 62 = 93. Already fans of the genre should be perking up their ears, as this number is no mystery to us. However, why 93? Horus Calling drips with a Thelemic aura, and 93 is extremely significant to this religion. The gematria* of both the words “LOVE” and “WILL” arrive at this value, and the number is representative of the belief system as a whole. Without divulging any more, this scribe urges those of similar inclination to seek out the answers and enrich the art for themselves!
There is much at work with just these two mysterious tracks.
The eponymous song creates and supports much of the occult feeling through sound and theme, and should be the central focus of this review. It seems that this release should have been a proper 7” vinyl single with a dominant A side and secondary B side. It is a powerful ode to the god Horus, whose age will dominate the future Aeons in equal parts chaos and change. The song awakens
its spirit through an ethereal opening and invocation as if parting the veil of reality. Incrementally, the magic weaves its way through playful guitars and narratives told by vocalist Eliahu Giudice. We are enlightened to the coming of the “hawk-headed god” Horus, the crowned and conquering child of Osiris and Isis. The Eastern flavour of the Egyptian deities is further enhanced by the wandering sitar lines and subtle hand drums. Transported to an altar of rising incense smoke and idols, the chorus breaks through the void of confusion with biting electric guitars and direct drum beats. The invocation is nearing completion as the mood changes to walls of dreamy ambience surrounding the central work – the spirit has entered our presence. Slowly, the “ecstatic union of rapture and joy” winds its way down to a point of reflection, attaining again a one-pointedness of wisdom. The final words are left to a touching sample of a young girl giving an erudite explanation of the natural magic within, far better and simpler than any over-intellectualization can do.
On the heels of Horus Calling, is a reimagining of traditional folk ballad Gently Johnny. The Green Man’s interpretation of this tune from ages past is a layered guitar based piece with very simple percussion. Beautifully sung voices of both Giudice and Chiara Alice Lorenzini give the song an almost spectral feel that is at once haunting and strangely comforting. It is a puzzling turn from the heavy metaphysics and otherworldly feel of the previous track, but this cover reminds that despite the magic just felt we are in fact listening to a neofolk band. Beyond over analysis, it is a blissful way to close this release: shut your eyes and let the age-old music of our ancestors carry you away.
Intended as a preview for the next The Green Man album, Horus Calling provides an effective transition between the accomplishments of the past and the promise of the future. If they can construct an entire album and honour us with the same feelings of beauty and Thelemic philosophy then we are in for a milestone in the genre. The Age of Horus is upon us, the old gods are not dead, and through the sanctity of will and love we shall enter into a new chapter of humanity’s spiritual evolution – Luckily, The Green Man will be there to provide the soundtrack.
*Gematria is a way of determining a number value from any given word. It is a process used in several forms of spiritual though, but it originally was based in ancient Hebrew. For a quick explanation this article should suffice http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gematria