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**Gatefold 2LP. Illustration by Simon Fowler printed on reverse card stock** Celebrated sound designer and dark ambient pioneer Brian "Lustmord" Williams present his first album of vocal works for none other than Blackest Ever Black. Honed over the last half decade, 'The Word Is Power' is a carefully conceived shift away from purely instrumental sonics to the para-dimensional realms of the spoken word, featuring "incantatory" performances by Jarboe (ex-Swans), Maynard James Keenan (Tool), Aina Skinnes Olsen, and Soriah. In key with Simon Fowler's ornate, arcane cover illustration depicting multi-tiered layers of cryptic ciphers and evocative semantic deconstructions, the glacial pace and fathomless atmospheres of Lustmord's arrangement and production afford rarely paralleled and immersive nether space for escape and reflection. Two pieces, 'Babel' and 'Chorazin', based on "traditional elements" are faithfully performed by Aina Skinnes Olsen against abyssal backdrops of plunging subbass and ogre-groan pads, whilst the remaining five parts render variations on this theme, from Soriah's dread-full glossolalia in 'Grigori' -strongly reminding of Ghedalia Tazartes on the Reines D'Angleterre LP - to the long shadows of Jarboe cast upon 'Andras Sodom' or James Maynard Keenan's desolate appearance in the cavernous space of 'Abaddon'. While it may creep too close to big-budget soundtrack productions for some, as a body of work it's an inarguably impressive feat of studio prowess and unfaltering vision.