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Coil is one of the most unique entities in Western music. Their music is an elusive, mysterious assemblage of elaborated ambiance, haunting dance rhythms, rituals rooted in the arcane, alinear narratives and dark magic. They describe their work as "Ritual music for the accumulation of male sexual energy," "tunes to facilitate time travel," and "recorded under the level of the River Thames in the Ancient Borough of Southwark." It often feels like an afterthought or the document of a ritual of which the listener catches only faint echoes. Yet the tracks are meticulously sculpted: layers of disjointed rhythms, peculiar voices, aqueous textures and florid melodies continuously change relationship to each other and, like a hallucination, create a subjective experience that changes with each encounter. Instruments appear and disappear, lyrics change meaning and temporal relationships become skewed. Deep listening becomes a revelation. With roots in what was once called Industrial music, Coil's core members John Balance and Peter Christopherson (of Throbbing Gristle and Psychic TV) have changed sounds, lineups and approaches countless times since their 1984 beginnings. But they've maintained a dark, alchemical approach to music where surrealist pastiche consorts with pop, ambience and dance club hedonism.
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