There has always been a great depth to traditional Greek music. Even the most joyous bouzouki-led dance carries a vast sadness and introspection not quite grasped by modern Western music, and therein lies what makes Balkan music just so . . . "exotic" sounding to us. Such duality (among many other characteristics, of course) defines the music of the Balkan peninsula, and it is duality still which drives its most ambitious new son: Spectral Lore’s sole musician Ayloss. In an hommage to the music of his home country, Gnosis, the latest in a series of adventurous, lengthy EPs meant to expand Spectral Lore’s sound between full-lengths, Ayloss offers a metallic translation of traditional Greek music, both in spirituality and in execution.

“A God Made Of Flesh And Consciousness,” the “central” and longest composition found on the Gnosis EP, is an engrossing listen. Bursting immediately out the gate with a polyrhythmic Mediterranean dance rhythm (you recognize it from most Melechesh songs, actually), Ayloss bombards the listener with dense layers of exotic guitar meandering and distant, but still ever-present keyboards. The spidery, oft-foreign sounding fountain of melodic ideas bring forth images of Cretan shorelines and endless olive groves, but without taking on any of the “musical stereotypes” associated with the popular notion of Greek music. No, there is a genuinity to Spectral Lore’s adventures in Eastern-sounding music, a testament to Ayloss’s true musicianship. Over the track’s 14 minutes (of which you’ll get to hear a little over 10 [below]), Spectral Lore imbues its now trademark sense of raw power with a distinct, deep sadness, hidden between its many layers and cultural affects. As it is with any tribute, there is a nostalgia associated, and it just oozes from the depths of Ayloss’s compositional and technical prowess. Like a tragic hero. How Greek.

From the artist:

This song is basically the apex of the album musically and lyrically - it describes the potential evolution of matter to soul to spirit.

—Ayloss/Spectral Lore

Gnosis is available to pre-order on CD and is slated for a December 7th release via I, Voidhanger Records. Listen to an exclusive premiere of a 10 minute excerpt of “A God Made Of Flesh And Consciousness” below.

—Jon Rosenthal



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