Anna von Hausswolff

Dead Magic

City Slang

Mar 02, 2018 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Find It At: AMAZON

It's one thing to believe in magic, quite another to believe in the death of it. On Anna von Hausswolff's fourth album, her gothic, bewitched art turns toward grand doom. Dead Magic is a five song, 47-minute record that her career has been building towards, amounting to her most majestic and complete work to date.

The album revolves around two monster tracks: opener "The Truth, The Glow, The Fall" is a deliberately-paced 12-minute processional, shrouded in satanic, folkloric mystery; "Ugly and Vengeful" is four minutes longer still. Both exercise the virtues of patience in building up a core strength so that when the moment comes to unleash, the power is all the greater. Organ keys duel with guitar strings to saturation point, von Hausswolff's voice wailing above them both. It is music for our dramatic times, expressing our headlines as potently as any journalist could.

"The Mysterious Vanishing of Electra" is a short clip at six minutes, much different with its marching rhythm and von Hausswolff caterwauling as if she's seen the reckoning and needs to spread the word. Eight-minute closer "Källans återuppståndelse" offers some respite, relying instead on tearful strings and misty synths, but Dead Magic quite rightly makes you work for it. (www.annavonhausswolff.org)

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