Through the ’80s and ’90s, the Australian duo Dead Can Dance turned goth into something mythic and lush and worldly. On 4AD, a label full of sonic adventurers, they were among the most adventurous, injecting their stargazing inward hymns with bits of Gaelic folk, Middle Eastern religious music, and art-rock sweep. And now they’re back at it again.
Dead Can Dance broke up in 1998, but they got back together in 2011. In 2012, they released a seriously great reunion album called Anastasis. And next month, they’ll follow it up with their new album Dionysus. The album, separated into two acts, takes its inspiration from Greek Dionysian spring festivals, and it draws links to other festivals around the world. Today, we get to hear “The Mountain,” the first song (or, sorry, movement) that the duo have shared from the album.
“The Mountain,” the first song from the second act, really sounds like alternate-reality religious music, full of drones and chants and a general all-around sense of wonder and transcendence. At any point in the song, it’s hard to know what instruments you’re hearing, or even what languages, but that’s sort of part of the magic of it. Check it out below, via Pitchfork.
Dionysus is out 11/2 on PIAS.