Interview with drummer Isaac Faulk
Denver cosmic death metal band Blood Incantation’s new album Hidden History of the Human Race, out on Dark Descent, quickly proves so physically intense that a psychological aspect of their sonic exploration jumps out too. Blood Incantation’s music is packed with intensely complex soundscapes embedded with all sorts of vitriol, and some directly psychedelic elements. Their sound is ambitious — the closing track on their new album is titled, in full, “Awakening From the Dream of Existence to the Multidimensional Nature of Our Reality (Mirror of the Soul).” That song clocks in at just over 18 minutes, and the relentless music fulfills the title’s promised ambition with a flourish.
“The contents of this recording, and its accompanying packaging, are meant as a direct call to the primal awareness of the human mind that there is something wrong here,” says drummer Isaac Faulk. “There is something we are not being told. We are a blind species fumbling in the dark with no memory, yet we whole-heartedly believe we are gods. Hidden History of the Human Race is a challenge to that and a counter-argument to the status quo.”
That challenge covers the music community too. Not many death metal bands are coming out with 18-minute long tracks featuring direct metaphysical questions.
“I think our goal was to create a barrage of brutality and serenity in order to loosen the mind and open up consciousness in new ways, not just for the listener, but also for us while we are playing this intense music,” Faulk shares.
Blood Incantation have shared stages with bands like Immolation, with whom they toured in fall 2019. Personally, Faulk notes that he feels tied to specific local communities like those around Denver, the San Francisco Bay Area, Istanbul, and Copenhagen more than he feels attached to a mainstream metal scene. He names a favorite recent album as the passionately experimental, definitely non-metal piece Dionysus by Dead Can Dance, although he does also praise the mind-opening qualities of extreme metal.
“The intense, dark atmospheres created by both death and black metal are easily matched with the vast unknown of the cosmos,” he notes.
Ultimately, Faulk and Blood Incantation seem intent on leaping past concerns like genre into the liberating psychological experiences that extreme sound has to offer. “We always try to challenge ourselves,” he says. “Who knows, you may eventually see a whole album of all our weirdest and most psychedelic sounds. I don’t believe Blood Incantation is limited to one thing, even if we have a signature sound.”
In the meantime, the sonic journey on Hidden History of the Human Race is available.
“The void is there, ever present in our daily lives. The emptiness of space is matched by the chasms of our own minds,” Faulk says. “That dark unknown is what draws us in, is what fuels us, and allows our imaginations to run wild. Perhaps in that darkness is where we find truth, our fears becoming at once obsolete and indicative of something greater than ourselves.”
Top photo by Alvino Salcedo