The work of H.P. Lovecraft has enraptured readers for an entire century, due largely to the author’s habit of constructing haunting environs and populating them with haunted characters. Lovecraft’s best work rendered multifaceted horror — fear of grotesque malice, fear of insanity, fear of the unknown, fear of the future. His characters were subjected to indescribable terror and forced to live with their memories, a cruelty too often forgotten in a genre that often begins and ends with the fear of death. Lovecraft’s pervasive fright came to be known as “cosmic dread” and serves as the main inspiration for ethnomusicologist Will Connor, Ph.D’s Seesar project.
Connor calls upon his mastery of percussive instruments to craft sinister ambiances full of incoherent whispers, harsh resonance, cavernous drones and toothy snarls. Connor approaches percussion with an open mind, crafting many of his own instruments and playing familiar materials in unfamiliar ways. Conceptually speaking, Silver Key and Flight of Raphontis have a lot in common but, while Raphontis builds dissonance until deafness, Silver Key’s tracks have a much smaller scope, driven less by agoraphobic panic than a simple fear of the dark. Those enamoured with drone music and sound art will appreciate moments of unfettered brilliance while an open-minded fan of concept albums will fidget about uncomfortably and love every second of it.
By John Julius