Experiencing the alchemical union between Shibalba, Nam-Khar and Alone in The Hollow Garden.
There were zero expectations that something would just come up like that especially after Shibalba‘s earlier release Nekrologie Sinistrae (Orchestra Noise Opus I) that was launched in October 2020.
Logically speaking, the time period that separates Shibalba‘s Nekrologie Sinistrae and their split with Nam-Khar and Alone in The Hollow Garden, is just three months; but things happen!
A sudden surprise it was, seeing a teaser on Facebook, with pre-orders for the Conjuring The Elements split that unites Shibalba, Nam-Khar and Alone in The Hollow Garden. I remember checking the Zazen Sounds Label‘s Bandcamp page to discover it is on limited production too.
The Alchemical Union
Now, before we get more into the split; you need to bear in mind that such a union between three solid entities as Shibalba, Nam-Khar and Alone in The Hollow Garden mostly means a magical release!
But hang on! What even pushed us further to be swallowed by the expected release at that time was the teaser that was published on Shibalba‘s Facebook page – asking why, eh?
The video teaser that was done by the Romanian artist and musician Dan Serbanescu of Alone in The Hollow Garden, conveyed the right fish hook here through a minimalist design approach and an ideal selection of audio snippets!
I remember a day or two later, I hovered over Zazen Sounds Label‘s Bandcamp, clicking on the split’s page, to find out that the split was sold out!
Now, let us think of it this way and from a materialistic-life-business-oriented approach; once a gold piece is out in whatever form, it gets snatched – especially with a limited number of copies.
Grey Is Not A Colour
Did you notice that the split’s cover art background colour is grey? Perhaps you did not think of it, and maybe it was intentional, maybe it was not!
In all cases, grey is not a colour, but it is considered as a shade between black and white.
If we treat this design case as voluntary, then we have to mention that grey is a shade that represents detachment, maturity and responsibility.
In other words, if this colour selection was intentional, then hats off to Dan Serbanescu, the cover designer! If not, then it still delivered what it accidentally is – which in terms of sound would imply detachment of self-identity, the maturity of sound and being responsible to pave the way to universal oneness.
But It Is A Soundtrack!
You read that right!
Few tracks from the Conjuring The Elements split were in fact recorded as a soundtrack for the visionary Entering The Desert Grimoire by the author Craig Williams, published by Anathema Publishing.
The physical-form book written by Craig Williams and illustrated by David S. Herrerías apparently had its own podcast version, where tracks from this split acted as a soundtrack.
You can listen to the podcast as well here if you are a Spotify user.
If your mind wonders about the book, and if you are unaware of the quality of writings published by Anathema Publishing House; it might be then useful to know that the book received a rating of 4.5 out of 5 on a giant book reference website such as Goodreads.com.
What About The Sound?
Enough with how greatly we perceived the release in its different forms, visually, conceptually and so on; and let’s just dive into the beauty of its vibration!
We believe that this split is one of the greatest releases so far in the year 2021. Not only through the immense strength behind it, expressed by the universal entities; Shibalba, Nam-Khar or Alone in The Hollow Garden, but as well throughout the experience, it gives to the listener.
The whole split is very meditative holding within the depth of awareness, and nevertheless, alertness and attention.
A masterpiece after another is how we realized Conjuring The Elements actually features. With the first four magnificent tracks belonging to Shibalba, followed by another batch of four gorgeous pieces for Nam-Khar and Alone in The Hollow Garden.
It is always fun to not get hold of a favourite track on this release; which signifies how well-composed Conjuring The Elements is!
Still, we could zoom in a bit more after multiple plays, to believe that our favourite track is the fourth track on this split; titled as The Rite of Kaivalya.
But What Do I Take Away As A Listener?
Well, if you have never bumped into Shibalba, Nam-Khar or Alone in The Hollow Garden; then maybe you should consciously approach the Conjuring The Elements split, among many other beautiful releases by the three entities.
If you have purchased the split then hurray to you! If you haven’t, then start saving money because you might end up buying the whole discography of this alchemical union!
We have conducted an interview with Shibalba, click here (Shibalba Interview) to read it!