The throbbing hum of low end coursing through “River of Crows” by Hollowlove as misty synths float over top alongside the sound of the titular birds cawing in the distance sounds like the soundtrack to a long lost 80s science fiction or fantasy movie. The music video suggests a mythical take on urban decay and hazy imagery akin to Children of Men or, in a lighter mood, the next Dash Shaw film. The track meanders with menace and dark promise of the mysterious path ahead with the crows as harbingers of something approaching out of sight. At times it’s reminiscent, moodwise, of the part of Apocalypse Now when Willard and crew reach the haven of Kurtz but have not yet met the Colonel. As crows are both a symbol of ill fortune and intelligence and destiny it’s perfect for a song that sounds like we’re in for a great adventure fraught with peril. Listen to the instrumental track on Soundcloud, watch the video and follow Hollowlove at the links below where you can listen to the rest of the project’s entrancing self-titled album.
Although Popol Vuh’s soundtrack to the 1987 film Cobra Verde, Werner Herzog’s fifth and final collaboration with Klaus Kinski, is perfectly adequate, this song, “Cobra, Deart Heart” by Irish experimental post-punk group The Mighty Avon Jnr, could very well step in with its gritty and colorful, sprawling and lush industrial soundscape. It might even work for Fitzcarraldo and Aguirre the Wrath of God as well. Bass throbs like the jungle swelter and the threat of hidden fauna, disease and the inner demons of other humans as their psyches crack under the strain of trying to survive and thrive in challenging environments. As the track progresses its vocals evolve into the realm of the wilder late 80s EBM and the distorted processing. And then the horns kick in giving the song a truly surreal feel like you’ve come upon some makeshift oasis in a hostile tropical landscape much as Willard and company did in the original cut of Apocalypse Now when they stumble upon the last refuge of former French colonists. All the shadows and light, the disorientation, the transcendence and mystery of the aforementioned films, the sense of them, flow through the entire composition. Overall the song is reminiscent of something Pigface might have done or some other Chris Connelly project but more melancholic and coherent yet just unbeholden to a narrow genre aesthetic. Listen to all nearly eleven minutes of this epic on Spotify and follow The Mighty Avon Jr at the links below.