Monstrous Fire

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The title track, recorded late in the project (12th). The imagery here is subtle, backed by a driving electronic tempo, evoking trance-like feelings; this is a meditation session aboard a faster-than-light star ship. This is a journey into a distant planet's unexplored countryside beneath a darkening sky. The title emerged from a curious bit of synchronicity. Back in 2008, the bookseller Barnes & Noble released a gigantic tome of H. P. Lovecraft's work, called "H. P. Lovecraft: The Fiction." It's a feast for any Lovecraft fan (1,100+ pages). Despite already owning a set of the definitive Arkham House editions of Lovecraft's work, I grabbed a copy without hesitation and promptly forgot about it once I lugged it home. So years later, as I listened to what would become track 5 ("Monstrous Fire") through headphones, I stood before my bookcases. I had the track on repeat, listening to the final mix, and I randomly took down the Lovecraft tome. However, I had just glanced at my computer screen, noting the track was 6:14 in length. I am not sure why, but I turned to page 614 in the book, and the first two words on the page were "monstrous fire" - but more than this, as it turns out, this passage is from my favorite H. P. L. story of all time: "The Colour Out of Space" - and in fact, it's from the very paragraph I often cite as to why. Here's a clip: "...the farm was shining with the hideous unknown blend of colour; trees, buildings, and even such grass and herbage as had not been wholly changed to lethal grey brittleness. The boughs were all straining skyward, tipped with tongues of foul flame, and lambent tricklings of the same monstrous fire were creeping about the ridgepoles of the house, barn and sheds. It was a scene from a vision of Fuseli, and over all the rest reigned that riot of luminous amorphousness, that alien and undimensioned rainbow of cryptic poison from the well—seething, feeling, lapping, reaching, scintillating, straining, and malignly bubbling in its cosmic and unrecognizable chromaticism." Monstrous fire, indeed.

credits

from Monstrous Fire, released April 19, 2011
Composed and recorded by James Kracht (Jan - Apr 2011)

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Distance to Jupiter Phoenix, Arizona

Music for imaginary films. Songs as stories. Soundtracks for scientists and stoners. Scores for storytellers and the headphone set.

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