Intra Naos By Calus
‘Intra Naos’ is the result of many years of intermittent work, which had its inspirational apex becoming incessant during the years from 2011 to 2015, when we finally entered the recording studio. This period saw something unlocking, allowing me to finally dig deeper and fully explore the still underlying layers and depths of the compositions and presence in them the sinister things that gave them life and form, finally bringing to the album’s completion. The writing process has been complicated and lengthy, and as mentioned, entirely focused on capturing within the music, the dark and numinous experienced on certain occasions. It has been quite much like wandering a labyrinth, both mentally and spiritually. The result is a very long and complicated album, far from the immediacy and easy listening.
In some way, Intra Naos is a concept album, although not in the conventional sense of narrating a story or sticking to a definite subject. It is in that it delves lyrically through various aspects of my quest, be it esoteric ‘experiments’ or other elements that have inspired me, like mystery cults, subconscious archetypes, nature, ONA, mental wanderings and cosmic voids etc, all pertaining to the album as -and actually just forming- the whole that it is. Some lyrics may even seem somehow difficult, not having a logical flow, which is true in some way. They, much like the music, escape definite patterns and forms. I must say I always find lyrics a difficult part of composing music, as they can never purely render what lies in the music itself, or the presence of the rite, or at least, I feel I’m not that much able to imbue them of the numinous as it happens with the music. Another great source of lyrical (but also musical) inspiration I drew from, were some especially symbolist works of art, mainly Bocklin. The cover artwork is a painting from Denis Forkas Kostromitin, and I find it incredibly beautiful and powerful, certainly emanating a dark energy and perfectly capturing the aura and many facets of the album as a whole. It is curious that you asked about lyrics and artwork in the same question, as Denis worked on the painting just after only reading the lyrics, we had no music to let him listen at the time. Also included is a companion drawing still by him, other things conceived by myself related to certain aspects of the album’s concept and some ONA Sinister Tarot images, that have been of deep inspiration and quite an obsession of mine on several moments. Much importance has been given to visual art on this album, which is strongly interconnected with the music.
As hinted over, Altar of Perversion’s fixations is rather ONA Satanism (or should I say paganism..), mythology, symbolism, the subconscious, stars and cosmic voids and the psyche/soul as a reflection of them, Nature, archetypes etc. The numinous and sinister in all of this is what we humbly yet adamantly explore through our art and life. From your mentioned topics, I am not that much into movies, but rather a devourer of books, the only two movies that influenced my life in some way, and therefore may somehow reflect on AOP too are “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “The Wicker Man”. Or thinking better about it, also “The Happening”, “Avatar” and “The Matrix” are excellent. All modern patriarchal monotheistic religions have no meaning to me, and all the same, contempt also goes to their “inversion” some call Satanism. Politics are of little interest these days as well, all too anthropocentric for my current thought, whatever my views are, I don’t need to make them match any man-made greed-driven ideology. And lastly, I am instead for a healthy lifestyle.
The speech here is rather broad seen the many different styles in both music and other art forms around today. Basing such considerations on AOP’s style quickly cuts the number of things to analyse. The current music/art style is for the major part based on modern thought and “reality”, simple human feelings directed at distracting the masses etc., something that I can hardly see under the definition of art in most cases, be it music, literature/poetry or visual arts. Whenever modernity/modern humanity expresses through some art form, art itself dies. You always have that superficiality coming from relegating art to simple and futile entertaining as is done today; it is all between the ego of “artists” and the thirst for having a good time of the fans. Not to speak of modern/contemporary so-called art (“painting/sculpture”). This if we consider popular mainstream music and art. There is no relation at all with AOP and how we conceive music/art. This is not because I see Black Metal as the only true form of artistic expression, I also like contemporary artists of other genres that are more popular, but that has depth in their art, like Sigur Ros for instance, to mention one. Pink Floyd of course. Bowie. Surely others that I forget, and some New Wave/Indie Rock, Gothic Rock (Fields of the Nephilim most of all) or even 80’s music can be interesting and deeper than the average in some cases; sometimes music/art surely expresses itself beyond the conscious intent of the artist. Commercial “music” generally, is unfortunately as meaningless and superficial as the masses it exists for. I relate what we do with AOP more to different but still underground genres of course, like ritual/dark ambient and similar. Such forms of music go deep to explore the mysterious and sinister, the unconscious depths etc., and they seem too “extreme” for the average person, they are not fun or talking about love or social matters, whence the clear cut between the underground and pop music, or even rock clearly. I also relate our music to the symbolism and surrealist currents of painting and some literature that inspired me quite much (although I’m far from being an expert) Bocklin especially as hinted over, but rarely anything too close to modern thought or aesthetics. Of course, also Black Metal and the other genres I mentioned are modern, but their meaning and intent have for their nature nothing to share with the current styles and aesthetics intended at large, rather digging into the primeval and abstract worlds and layers of the mind, spirit and nature. Luckily there are splendid artists as well in our days, like Richard Moult or Denis Forkas to name just a couple. And surely many other exceptions to what I criticise about current art/music.
I despise belief in the religious meaning of accepting something out of blind faith based on hearsay or a human conceived ideology written on a book. So to me, belief is something that arises from sensing that there is more behind the reality we perceive through physical senses, and that will drive those who have this feeling to explore the dark, mysterious and numinous that lies behind in Nature, in Art and beyond the delusions of our human egos. This will to experience such things directly will transform the initial intuition into knowledge, this belief is just a starting point for the seeker, the sensing of something, although this is a path with no end for sure. As for my personal belief and philosophy, much of it is based on the realization that modern humanity is a mass of demented automatons and cancer on this beautiful planet under all perspectives imaginable, the modern world is totally based on illusive ego-feeding human construct, parasitism and stupid morals that have totally estranged our species from nature and the numinous, and from the very human nature itself, including spiritually of course. I despise the artificial, anthropocentric and materialistic delirium of the current ‘civilisation’. This vision of things, and understanding that the real world is not modern cities but nature, from which so-called civilisation isolates itself, brought me to develop a philosophy and lifestyle in that direction through various esoteric meanderings and daily living habits. With nature I mean anything from a flower to the farthest stars and unreachable cosmic voids and all that lies between, to the veiled and unseen, seeing this as sacred, and its exploration in the spiritual sense a high aim for life. This reflects and makes our art/music matter on a spiritual level, of course, definitely focusing mainly on terror and the sinister, and dark archetypes related to the psyche, ego dissolution and other disrupting processes withdrawing illusive projections. Leaving behind the qabbalistic/grimoire nonsense or even blasphemy/antichristian themes ( that AOP never used that much) so typical of BM and the occult milieu in general, we tread different paths. Music is something of a sacred nature in the first place, as all art worth the title.
Interview by Alex Milazzo – Copyright 2018 © Heavy Music Artwork. All rights reserved.