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Legit CD reissue, Lux Aeterna, was originally composed to celebrate a friend of William Sheller's wedding, thematically driven by concepts of union and togetherness, and ostensibly based on the Catholic mass, this is far from any sort of religious music you've ever heard. Following in the footsteps of other iconoclastic composers, like Serge Gainsbourg, Jean-Claude Vannier, Lee Hazlewood, David Axelrod, Scott Walker and of course Magma (more on that in a second), Sheller conjured up what is at once an over the top symphonic prog epic, but also a strangely meditative operatic chorale, the sound a gorgeous and dizzying fusion of bombastic prog, classical opera, tripped out seventies psych, outsider jazzfunk, and soaring symphonic majesty. The first track alone should convince you, with its groovy loping stripped down rhythm, its woozy bassline, its swoonsome strings, its slippery slide guitar (!!), its lush operatic vox. That cut is equal parts lost soundtrack and weird Morricone-esque krautfunk, sort of, the sound epic and dramatic and VERY cinematic, dark and subtly sinister, minor key and haunting, but then with about a minute to go BAM, the the sound shifts, sort of fractures, and gets super lo-fi, soaked in phaser and flanger, swirling and tripped out, laced with psychedelic wah guitar, a woozy, melting fad out groove. Holy WOW. So fucking awesome. And that's pretty much how the rest of the record plays out, with Sheller weaving these lush orchestral epics, alternatingly symphonic or operatic, when all of a sudden he'll mix in some trippy sci fi freak out FX or fuse rock drums to soaring operatic vox and symphonic strings. Some tracks play it totally straight, like "Ave Frater, Rosae Et Aurae", which really could have been plucked right out of a mass, but then in swoops "Opus Magnum Pt. 2", with its driving kraut-ish groove, reprising the opening theme, but adding some seriously loopy bleeps and bloops, squelches, and reverby blurps, tripped out laser fire squiggles and swirling analog electronics. Only to then settle right back down into some hushed string driven drift, but a minute or two later and the sound explodes again in a frenzy of FX, the song gathering momentum, and heft, and transforming into a sort of dirgey driving jam, wreathed in strings and an avalanche of glitched out electronics. And so it goes, slipping from haunting ritualistic choral music, to tripped out psychedelic seventies prog funk grooviness and back again, sounding quite often like Magma, or some similarly epic prog combo, stopping occasionally to dip into a bit of musique concrete or twentieth century classical, or introducing seriously terrifying children's spoken word, reciting what sounds like scripture, before finally finishing off with a gorgeous melancholy piano coda, again a refrain of that opening melody.
*Remastered from the original CBS mastertapes 2012.
*19 track CD. All original recordings.
*20 page full colour booklet with exclusive liner notes and rare photos.
*Includes the staggeringly beautiful concept LP reissued for the very first time anywhere! Plus a swathe of rare 45 only and original film score tracks!