Dagobert's Revenge

The Circus Of The Scars

Home Is Where The Hurt Is

review by Everrett C. Marm

The aptly named Circus Of The Scars are a strange group indeed, covering more musickal ground on one release than most groups do in a lifetime. For classification purposes I’d say that this is highly experimental Darkwave or Gothic, but the construction is like no other that I have ever heard in those genres. "The Fledgling Song" opens up this disc with a gentle string-like synth line that gives way to gentle singing about looking into someone's eyes for the first time, then morphing into a stratospheric whoosh that is accompanied by what sounds like a newborn's cries and wailings. “Thee Summoning” follows up this sonic can of worms with a wash of harsh noise, morphing into a neo-classical piano piece that eventually gives way to Download-like, electronic, psuedo drum-n-bass beats, before finally collapsing into the sound of a thousand ham radios broadcasting simultaneously. “Spiritually Allied” sounds like Can meeting up with Charlie Manson, in fact the sampled voice and coyote howls are that of Manson as he speaks about being allied in the spirit of the coyote and the scorpion with the infamous group, The Process Church Of Final Judgement. “Winter’s Cinders” also echoes this sentiment, with Process leader, William DeGrimston inspired lyrics like, “Release the fiend that dwells in you...The fly within the social glue”, before descending into lyrics like, “We shall bring the final winter, Yes, we shall bring the fires and cinders”. Apocalyptically chilling stuff. The title track is a minimalist stroll down the topic-lane of suffering, pain, and how desire brings these things to us. My favorite though is the mind-numbing wall of voices on “Schizophrenic Symphonies”, which features evershifting samples of psychiatric patients talking about what ails them while a shrink talks about why they are lucky; mainly because they are all capable of producing emotionally stirring pieces of art. Something that The Circus Of The Scars has managed to do with this release. As a bonus there is 30 minutes worth of musick from the complete "Infection Sessions" 10" vinyl release that will be released sometime in the near future. This portion of the disc is where The Circus Of The Scars really shines. Roughly, this portion is a mini-concept of EP length that covers the topic of illness, death and dying and the points of view of both the patient and the virus. Haunting, claustrophobic, and touching with a sound that is somewhat akin to newer Coil material and certain moods that The Legendary Pink Dots evoke. Considering that this is their first official release, I would say to look out for more excellent work by The Circus Of The Scars in the near future.

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