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Black Seas of Infinity Interview; Bornless, I have Become
Friday, May 15 2009 @ 01:00 AM PDT
Contributed by: drengskap

Black Seas of Infinity Interview

"The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity; and it was not meant that we should voyage far."

--HP Lovecraft, ‘The Call Of Cthulhu’




Salt Lake City is noted for being the capital of Utah and the world headquarters of Mormonism. Interestingly, the celebrated porn stars Belladonna and Cytherea both hail from the city. One thing you wouldn’t expect to find flourishing there, though, is ritualistic occult ambient music. Yet from this inhospitable desert terrain, the exotic nightshade blossom of Black Seas Of Infinity (BSOI) has sprung forth. Contacting the entity known as Jhon Longshaw elicited some cryptic oracles.

Heathen Harvest: Maybe we could begin by talking about your last album Hieros Gamos: The Sacral Fornication, which was released on Autumn Wind Productions last summer. Can you tell me something about how the album was put together? Did anybody else assist you in composing the music, or was it a solo production? What is the BSOI songwriting process? What instruments do you use, both acoustic and electronic? Do you use a computer to compose and/or record?

Jhon Longshaw: The Hieros Gamos is the apotheosis of the Nephilim, the Grigori, the fallen essence who have disseminated the secret art unto mankind through mating with the daughters of men, this is a great cipher to be unveiled by those who are of the blood. The release is composed of a series of transmissions received through gates of in-betweenness, the secret caverns wherein ophidian calcinations breed through the womb of majestic permutations... the birth of the trees of eternity vomiting forth concupiscence… Exalted are the thrones of the burning oceans flaming forth glory upon glory upon glory… This is the utterance of those who caress the swollen breasts of eternities flowering, the nectar of the three shall unite as one.

The second half of the title, The Sacral Fornication, was excluded before the recording of the album actually began, for various reasons. The ideas implicit within the statement are sound and may be experienced as an invisible house within the structure of the Hieros Gamos itself. The official release date was October 31st, although the album had originally been intended for a summer release. The entities of which we are and were the mouthpiece, continued in their injunctions throughout the summer and autumnal periods, therefore the release was delayed.

Concerning the musical compositions of Black Seas of Infinity. I write, compose and arrange all of the musical extensions, and in its myriad concoctions it shall ever be. Such has been the way since the inception of Black Seas of Infinity in 1993, and will ever continue upon the branches of fermentation and intoxication which seethe with the venomous rays which perpetuate the continuous elixirs of she who radiates the gnosis of the spheres of wisdom and understanding…

For live performances other individuals contribute. On Hieros Gamos others contributed to the invocations, which are a series of transmitted oracles received through a series of workings performed over the course of almost a year, the essence of which may be experienced in the ghostly convocations present within the recording, the mysteries unveil themselves within the listener upon each successive of the recording itself. Some have communicated their results with the recording, and it has birthed emanations which have produced continuous residual hauntings...

I use a variety of instruments ranging from kanglings, bells, bones, drums and other acoustic instruments coupled with electronic engineering to create the emotions which pour forth… With each song and release the composition always differs, as the idea behind each track is unique unto itself, the towers of the earth shall kiss the lovely brow of infinity… I utilize many different recording implements, 4- and 8-track recorders and also a number of different professional recording equipment for mixing and mastering. I also do commissioned mixing and mastering for other artists as well. In summation, I utilize many different instruments, programs and implements in order to create my art.

HH: Your previous album, AMRITA: The Quintessence, was about, among other things, female sexual energy – is an album about fornication the logical next step? Can you explain the concepts underlying Heiros-Gamos?

JL: Hieros-Gamos is a continuation of the ideas explored within AMRITA. It is the marriage and copulation of gods and women resulting in the birth of knowledge, wisdom and understanding. The bruised, stooping ophidian dragon induces rapture’s blind embrace. Consummation of the secretion’s profusion, and I and the earth are one. The sacral fornications shall be devoured, disseminating the glistening waters of the flower of sanctimonious perversions, unto the shadows of the whore. We become the gate to the temple of truth.

HH: You've already mentioned that BSOI is a solo project that uses other musicians for live performance, but I was under the impression that Cody Dickerson of Hamramr became a member of BSOI last year - is this mistaken?

JL: Cody Dickerson was a previous member for live performances and did, for a time, become a full time member of Black Seas of Infinity. Due to time restraints and other explorations, within other areas of his life, he has departed the project for the time being. His contributions were more scalding than the lamentation of a thousand bleeding moons. Regarding Hamramr, I am not quite sure of their current status. They were in hiatus due to similar reasons mentioned above, the last time I inquired.

HH: What's next for BSOI? Are there any releases planned for this year - if so, can you reveal any details yet, like title, probable release date etc?

JL: There are two releases planned for the future. A double 7", which is as yet untitled, will be released later this year through Autumn Wind Productions. My next full-length will be released next year though Autumn Wind Productions as well. Recording will begin this summer. It will involve the work of other musicians and artists extending their essence within the music in ritualistic exhalations. It will be a further exploration of the Sabbatic current, in which ways it will manifest are yet to be known. This also is yet to be titled, but the inherent energies are aligning in octrigal formulations of formlessness…

HH: BSOI was first conceived in 1993, but there were no releases until the Adoration Of The Black Moon cassette demo in 2000. Can you tell me something about the sound and intention of BSOI in those early years, particularly with regard to black metal, since I believe that BSOI was originally a black metal band (indeed, you still have a page on the (http://www.metal-archives.com/) Encyclopaedia Metallum), but your music could hardly be described as black metal now?

JL: The intention has always been and remains to unveil the waters of the moon that bequeathed the unknown virtues of the serpent and the sword. Fragmentary, luminous bones cast the reflective light upon the numinous, the strands of the shores of our inner seas were illuminated by the depths of stars unbound. All hail the procession of masks, within benighted chambers gleam the eyes of sunless discernment. Ghostly images burn with splendour and debauchery, septenary, quaternary. We shall stand as the one beyond the black vault of the stars, serpent fingers gesture forth the veils awakening. Vomit the flames of swarming vultures to devour the wings of she who sheds perfumes of excremental ekstasis and the kiss of the dove shall excite the seven and ten wounds of descension’s perfection upon the tinctures of crimson and mauve and nothingness.

The sound was hypnotic, discordant, raw black metal. I believe most have heard Adoration Of The Black Moon and the split with Daemon Infernum, Daemon Infernum being the work of myself and an ex-member of Black Seas Of Infinity. Being the sole progenitor of BSOI, I chose to change my musical direction, for I felt that the medium of black metal was not the proper menstruum in which to express the ideas inherent within Black Seas Of Infinity. I have not written or recorded any black metal material for BSOI since the turn of the century, and never again will BSOI create or record black metal. I am however involved in certain other projects which do play black/death metal. The only reason the page exists on Encyclopedia Metallum is that I once did create black metal, considering that they will not remove it. This is also the case with many other projects which have nothing whatsoever to do with metal at all, but are still displayed there because of members’ involvement in other metal bands. A good example are certain of the Aural Hypnox projects, because of their involvement with Dolorian and Wormphlegm.

HH: Who have been your major musical influences?

JL: I listen to and enjoy a wide and diverse collection of music, but the influences that contribute to what I create within Black Seas Of Infinity are not musical. I channel the arcanum of mysteries that cannot be known or expressed within the human faculty of speech. A few of the more interesting projects I enjoy listening to at this time are Halo Manash, Zero Kama, Circle Of Ouroborus, Virus, Techno Animal, The Elemental Chrysalis, Scorn, Grauen Pestanz, Portal, Electric Wizard, BT.HN, Aluk Todolo, Abelcain, The Serpent Power, Zoät-Aon, Unearthly Trance and Musterion, to name a few. I don’t find these projects influential, so much as a reflection of my innermost being. Music is a very personal subject. The resonation must be pure.

HH: BSOI has mainly been released by Autumn Wind Productions to date - what's your relationship with the label like? I believe you were annoyed by criticisms of AWP made by Osman Arabi in his recent Xardas Heathen Harvest interview.

JL: I find Autumn Wind Productions to be an incredibly excellent label. I have known Erik for some years, and I've watched Autumn Wind grow from a distribution into a label, into the formation he has built, which is a growing and thriving sentient throne emanating its many-coloured rays to illuminate the sleeping in their dreamless slumber... I have been with Autumn Wind since its initial inception, and I intend to stay. I support the label and all of its endeavours, and have myself advertised and marketed for the label from the beginning, as I still do.

Concerning Xardas and his recent comments regarding Autumn Wind and the current state of the ritual/ambient/noise/industrial scene, his words and thoughts are his own. Xardas and I are good friends, although I do not agree with his stance, or with his criticisms. We have spoken of this subject personally many times and have always disagreed. He states that the sales of his albums have decreased over the years and wants to blame that partially on Autumn Wind and their marketing strategies. I believe he should look further within, and meditate on why his releases are not selling or garnering the same amount of attention they once were. It is his supporters whom he should look to.

Xardas has had more coverage than any other project on Autumn Wind, even having an interview in Metal Maniacs, of all places, which is one of the biggest magazines of its kind. Although the magazine focuses on metal, many people listen to both forms of music and therefore still become aware and interested in projects such as 20.SV through such exposure, or so one would think. The marketing and advertising of all Autumn Wind releases is wide and vast. If it were not, they would not be hailed as one of the best ambient/experimental/industrial labels in existence.

Erik is precise in all of his business transactions and is true to his word in all ways, which is a rarity in today's scene. As I have experienced personally, with labels, distributors, club owners, even some projects themselves showing a complete lack of integrity and honesty in their word.

Xardas is now branching out with different projects, which is a good idea if he wishes to express himself musically in this way, but in truth the sale of his albums and all artists, not only on Autumn Wind Productions but within all industrial labels, is not phenomenal. It is far from being the most popular or accessible form of music. It caters to a special, particular type of person, those who immerse themselves within cachinations of otherness. If one wishes to live solely on the music they create, if it be ambient/experimental, they are in the wrong place and composing the music they do for all the wrong reasons.

Ritual/ambient/noise/industrial is a form of music which is channelled from the inner being of the artist. It is formlessness incarnate. The purpose of the artist should not be to make millions of dollars, but to express something which is truly beyond the regular spheres of understanding, and to invoke such states within the listener. To quote the late Andrew D. Chumbley concerning the poet and the poem:

"In speaking of Poet and Poem we speak of the Point and of the Crooked Path that strikes forth from it; we speak of the Way and of the Steps placed upon it. We describe the breach between the centre of the world and the horizon, between the zenith and the nadir. In speaking of Poet and Poem we speak of many things of which we may not speak. Amid these words a secret is voiced. Do not mistake it amidst its own echoes."

I believe this states succinctly the idea that the relationship between art and the mediums whom it chooses to erupt within and through is beyond all temporal gain.

HH: The name Black Seas Of Infinity is taken from a phrase in the opening paragraph of HP Lovecraft's famous short story 'The Call of Cthulhu' – has Lovecraft been a big influence on either the music of BSOI or your personal occult practice?

JL: In very simple, precise terms, no. The name itself is not ‘taken’ from the story, although it does appear there. I believe it subconsciously planted itself within my psyche, only to emerge and come to fruition many years later. Having read the story and being a fan of Lovecraft's work since I was a child, I did not make the connection until years later, when it was pointed out to me by another. The name itself is an apt description of the creations and channelings of my magickal workings, being as vast as the seas of infinity…

HH: What about the esoteric inspirations underlying Black Seas Of Infinity? What is the music of Black Seas Of Infinity intended to express or achieve?

JL: Black Seas Of Infinity is the vehicle of the oracles, eternally flowing cascades of Saturnine magnification. It is the channelling of the force of nothing incarnate, inseminating the minds of men with the seed of incalculable aeons. Perpetuating eruptions of the highest gnosis upon all who experience these instruments of desire, will and manifestation… I invoke the mysteries of the 11-fold secret. Through my heart and my tongue are absorbed and consumed the eternal becoming…

This interview with Jhon Longshaw of Black Seas Of Infinity took place by email in April-May 2009.


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