December 2, 2005
The Ape of Naples is ready for you now
The final studio album from Coil, The Ape of Naples has arrived at Threshold House and is being sold now. According to Threshold House, "Featuring songs recorded in final days of Jhonn's life, as well as material originally recorded at Trent Reznor's studio in New Orleans, and now substantially re-arranged by Peter Christopherson, this album is sure to be seen as the 'classic' Coil album of all time, and is not to be missed under any circumstances!"
here is the tracklist:
- Fire Of The Mind
- The Last Amethyst Deceiver
- Tattooed Man
- Triple Sun
- It's In My Blood
- I Don't Get It
- Heaven's Blade
- Cold Cell
- Teenage Lightning 2005
- Amber Rain
- Going Up
November 12, 2005
The Ape of Naples escapes its cage
Thresholdhouse.com has recently been updated to include information on the imminent release of Coil's final studio album, entitled The Ape of Naples. At some point in the imminent future, the album will be available to order from the website, and it should be in your favorite independent record store (if you still have one) by Christmas. This announcement comes one year almost to the day, after Jhonn Balance's untimely death on November 13, 2004.
In addition to a sneak preview of the lovely cover artwork by artist Ian Johnstone, the site contains a brief update by Sleazy, who talks about the future, which includes more eBay auctions from Coil archives (search ZOS23) and a tentative Spring 2006 release date for the long-awaited live DVD box. What better way to commemorate the passing of one of underground music's most ferocious talents than the release of his final and most anxiously awaited work? Christmas now is drawing near...
September 14, 2005
Cassette release to See the Light of Reissue
Those who have tried to collect the entire discography of Coil have often been stymied by the cassette release Dolbied, a collaboration between Coil, The New Blockaders and Vortex Campaign released in an edition of 50 back in 1984. The vain searching is over now, as Stephen Meixner and Black Rose Recordings are planning an authorized CD reissue with a planned release date of October 1. The CD, entitled The Melancholy Mad Tenant, is set to include not only the entire Dolbied cassette, but also two additional tracks from the same sessions. It will be released in an edition of 500 in hand screen-printed covers, which includes a special "cloth bag" edition of 100.
April 10, 2005
And the Ambulance Died In His Arms
The latest relase from Coil has made its way into the shops this past week rather suddenly with little warning. The disc is a recording from their appearance at All Tomorrow's Parties and features five songs that have never been released in studio versions: "Triple Sun Introduction," "Snow Falls into Military Temples," "A Slip in the Marylebone Road," "Triple Sons and the One You Bury," and "The Dreamer is Still Asleep - The Somnambulist in an Ambulance." While stores like Rough Trade are carrying it already, the Threshold House website should offer it soon.
16 Feb 1962 - 13 Nov 2004
Jhonn Balance (aka John Balance and Geff Rushton) died at home on November 13 in a fall, leaving the music world and the wider world of magick without one of its most gifted and vivid voices.
He was born Geoffrey Laurence Burton on 16th February 1962 in Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, later adopting the Rushton surname of his stepfather, and was educated at Lord Willliams School. He studied voice and vocal technique with Saral Bohm, wife of the physicist David Bohm. He was a member of 23 Skidoo, Psychic TV, Zos Kia, and Current 93, and in 1983 founded Coil with Throbbing Gristle cofounder Peter Christopherson. They embarked together on one of the most enduring and fruitful art/life partnerships in music.
Balance was a natural occultist from youth—he has left amusing accounts of his intensive astral experiences while still a public schoolboy. He became a serious student of all occult literature, and drew on this in his music, artfully fusing esoterics with a succession of musical forms and styles over more than two decades. The imagery and symbolism of his lyrics were however entirely his own—he never resorted to plundering the symbolic language of others, though he enjoyed occasional veiled references. His output is all the more rich for his originality, making him a primary source in his own right, with passionate fans among occultists and pagans of all persuasions. His vocal technique was relentlessly experimental—where many singers settle on a signature style and vocal range, he continually pushed the limits of expression to find fresh outlets for his visions.
The output of Coil ranges from the avant-garde (including soundtracks for experimental filmmaker Derek Jarman), to acerbic reflections of passing trends in popular music (such as the brilliantly sardonic Love's Secret Domain album), to experimental neoclassical and folk (as with the Solstice/Equinox series), to extended excursions into pure electronica (like the recent Musick to Play in the Dark albums). Many bands and composers have cited Coil as an influence. Balance frequently collaborated with others, as guest artist, remixer and producer. Commissioned work by Coil includes a soundtrack for Clive Barker's Hellraiser (rejected by the studio as too frightening), and important remixes of Nine Inch Nails (see the title sequence music for the film Seven, and the album Further Down the Spiral).
After an initial appearance in Berlin in 1983, Coil was a studio group until they premiered a sophisticated live show at London's Royal Festival Hall in 2000, commencing a highly successful series of tours that tested and proved Balance's abilities as a performer. Balance was a gifted writer whose work remains to be collected and published. A connoisseur of all things strange and beautiful, over the years he and Peter Christopherson built the important Threshold House collection of Austin Osman Spare and Aleister Crowley artworks, often loaning paintings to shows.
Balance struggled all his life with the twin diseases of depression and alcoholism—the latter contributed to his accidental death—but he drew on this pain as well as his great joy in living to produce art that was all the more true, immediate and poignantly relevant. An account of his life and work is David Keenan's "England's Hidden Reverse: The Secret History of the Esoteric Underground" (London: SAF Publishing, 2003).
A man of immense talent, learning, charm and generosity, he is survived by his ex-partner and lifelong collaborator Peter Christopherson, and his partner, the artist Ian Johnstone.
- William Breeze -