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BELL WITCH and AERIAL RUIN come together for new album 'Stygian Bough Volume I'

A collaborative effort that transcends the physical being.

Photograph by Lauren Lamp

The towering funeral doom of BELL WITCH has come together with AERIAL RUIN's dark folk for Stygian Bough, a new musical union that embodies the honesty and genuineness of each unit. Their first joint release comes as Stygian Bough Volume 1, set to release on June 26, 2020 via Profound Lore Records.

Inspired by ULVER’s Kveldssanger, CANDLEMASS' Nightfall and specifically the track Rows (of Endless Waves) from the 2012 BELL WITCH record Longing, Stygian Bough Volume 1 finds the trio tapping into the mournful and mystical. The collective have brought together five tracks sprawling with folk-infused funeral doom that is both heart-wrenching and graceful.

Dylan Desmond (BELL WITCH) comments on the collaboration:

“Stygian Bough is a reference to the theme of The Golden Bough. The book’s theme is centered on the rites of a temple in ancient Italy where slaves were transformed into kings by slaying he who reigned as such after successfully stealing the Golden Bough from the sacred tree within the temple. Within that notion, a different sort of slavery was brought upon the newly crowned king, as he must understand sooner or later that his fate would ultimately be the same as his predecessor. In short, the golden bough made a king out of a slave only to find they were now enslaved to a different sort of tyranny, always stalking them from the darkest shadows of their imagination. From this perspective, the "golden bough" is better understood as a deception casting darkness. Thus, Stygian Bough.” Erik Moggridge (AERIAL RUIN) adds:

“They presented that song [“Rows (of Endless Waves)”] to me in a mostly instrumental form with the idea that it's about a ghost trapped on rows of waves that can’t reach the land. I ran with this idea and started to think of the ghost of a king who, if he reached land could be reborn and rule again. The king is also a larger metaphor for humanity who rules over the planet and other species. On this new album our ghost upon the waves flees not towards the land but towards death. The narrative, as much as it exists, is loose and not linear and definitely stream of consciousness. There are cyclical and spherical qualities to the journey where death, desolation, and the spirit are reflected in myriad ways.”

Stream the lead Heaven Torn Low II (The Toll) below and pre-order your copy HERE.

Cover art by Adam Burke


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