Conjuring the Elements: A Journey Through Carpathian Mists

ARKTAU EOS returned to Romania after seven years, once again thanks to the perseverance and dedication of our friend Costin Chioreanu. It turned out to be an intense weekend: we experienced both extreme rain that turned the streets of Brașov into rivers and blistering summer heat, but also the wonderful Romanian countryside and historical sites, before finally entering the massive Valea Cetății cave for our concert.

It did not happen without a bit of struggle, though. Despite several empty promises and ample time to do so, the airline and courier proved themselves incapable of actually delivering our lost luggage in time for the concert, missing all ETAs. This left us with barely one third of equipment we had planned for the event. However, since we are fighters and not quitters, we decided to go ahead with full force, trusting instinct and improvisation to carry us through. In the end, the presence was there and we emerged into daylight satisfied that going back to the roots was interesting and worthwhile in itself. Many thanks to Dan/ALONE IN THE HOLLOW GARDEN for lending us some instruments, and the Carpathian woods for providing others. Apologies for the ninja headgear!

Thank you for all the help: Costin, Alin (Rockstadt Extreme Fest), Gina, Dex, and the local crew. Special hello to the mighty CANDLEMASS.

We hope to come back – next up is Helsinki and Paris.

Arktau Eos live in Transylvania!

Arktau Eos are pleased to return to Romania to perform an exclusive set at the magnificent Valea Cetății Cave near Râșnov. Continuing their late 2018 explorations of subterrannea in the Pyrenees, Arktau Eos cherish this possibility to inquire further into the mysteria of primordial chthonic sonics in such one of a kind milieu. Care will be taken to protect the environment and its attendant fauna, therefore the capacity will be extremely limited. Information to follow. Full statement of the organizers is appended herewith:

“The Cave Between Worlds” filled with dark ambient and experimental music. Attila Csihar, Arktau Eos and others play live inside Valea Cetății Cave during Rockstadt Extreme Fest, in Transylvania

Rockstadt Extreme Fest announces a new event which will take place inside the Valea Cetății Cave (The Fortress Valley): the artistic act and concept of “The Cave Between Worlds” wherefore a couple of musicians will offer their works in new shapes adapted to the environment’s requirements and therefore transformed into unique moments. What bonds these artists together is the interest in the bleakest and wildest tendencies of the experimental music, especially the dark ambient and the reverberation-built expressions which will be wonderfully amplified by the cave’s structure.

The event is set during Rockstadt Extreme Fest which is already famous in the Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. This year will be the seventh edition taking place between the 1st and the 4th of August. This debut includes four separate performances, spread across two days. Attila Csihar will attend with his project Void ov Voices, together with Arktau Eos, Alone in the Hollow Garden and ARAC.

Recently, there has been observed a huge openness and increased diversity towards the selection of suitable spaces for live performances with musicians in leading roles. There are various instances of events happening in other environments than the usual stage of a venue, club or festival. These instances apply to various genres, from experimental to heavy metal, country and hip hop. For the European metal heavy community, Prophecy Fest, set in a natural cave from the Stone Age in Germany, has been widely acclaimed. On the other side of the ocean, in Tennessee the Bluegrass Underground series echoes all around the globe where international artists perform 10 meters underground. These are just two of many examples. In Romania, the Valea Cetății Cave has been hosting on weekly basis concerts of the Philharmonic of Brașov and this summer will bring a premiere of the underground.

The sound depends fully on the environment so it cannot be heard in the void. Each type of architecture brings its own sound. This is why the relationship between music and space is so tight. It’s easy to figure out why many people involved in the music field go more and more towards spaces which were labelled as unconventional until recently such as churches or cathedrals and caves. On the one hand, the religious places urge unique acoustics given by the architectural geometry and they are the cause of a powerful symbolism found in the listener’s perception. On the other hand, the caves with their structure offer a very complex range of acoustic waves while the natural resonance and reverberation influence in a spectacular manner the listener’s sense.

The first day of “The Cave Between Worlds” will be the 2nd of August, belonging to Arktau Eos and Alone in the Hollow Garden. The Finnish group Arktau Eos will be for the second time in Romania and will assert a new moment in its existence described as a “ghastly and wondrous parade of cryptic images and sounds.” Those who attended their performance in Fabrica venue in 2012 were filled with lurid memories and perhaps haunted by them for the rest of their lives. This type of ambient brought up by Arktau Eos can be equally classified as calm and cavernous, bringing shock sequences identical to what an individual feel on the brink of illumination. “Erēmos” is the title of their latest record and its variations were offered to the European public during a tour in which they embarked along with the psychedelic forest folk gang from Tampere, Hexvessel.

Clearly, Alone in the Hollow Garden is fitted enough for a supportive Arktau Eos performance. Led by Dan Șerbănescu of Tanz Ohne Musik, this project aims to achieve a reconnection with the roots of the ritual ambient and the experimental music in the ’90s. However, this sonic construction is found at the crossroads between tradition and contemporaneity. It is worthy of mentioning the use of old acoustic, wind, percussion and ritual instruments. Their sounds are rendered in new forms through the use of analogue and modular synthesizers and also the instruments built by Șerbănescu himself. Fully charged with the esoteric feeling, Alone in the Hollow Garden takes the listener in its hands and brings the proper environment for contemplation and meditation.

Void ov Voices, Attila Csihar’s one-man-band–the singer is renowned for his long term activity in Mayhem, Tormentor and the involvement in other remarkable projects such as Sunn O)))–will make the cave’s darkness more intense than the usual on the 3rd of August. In this case, the vocals are the single instruments used and they transform gradually into a giant creature through loop machines and various effects. Attila’s mission with this project is not to record and release the music but to convey outlandish forces within the most relevant circumstance which means the presence of any group of individuals. The first ever performance of Void ov Voices took place in Moscow, 2008, along with the revered ambient-jazzers of Bohren & der Club of Gore. Attila Csihar took this project in various places including Australia and Japan and involved collaborative sets with Ulver, Merzbow and many others while he was still engaged in his main bands.

This second day of “The Cave Between Worlds” marks also the premiere of ARAC project. What we know so far about this is that everything started with a manifest. Through this, the creators of frequencies and melodies which transcend the space and time attempt to speak to our planet regarding the huge distance between human and environment. Adrian Tăbăcaru is a renowned percussionist of the local scene and the orchestral music and a former member of the death metal group Taine. He joined Costin Chioreanu in this project, a visual artist who illustrated records signed by some of the most respected bands of today. He is also a guitar player who made himself conspicuous through authenticity and had the honour to record music with David Tibet or the same Attila Csihar. Their manifest involves also a powerful voice which is alien of any predictable means, embodied by the Greek singer Sofia Sarri. Over the years she explored a very wide range of styles, from avant-garde, metal and post-rock to free jazz, improvisation and polyphonic choirs, without stepping over the leaning for folk music, which she developed while trekking the place of origin, Crete.

Each concert of “The Cave Between Worlds” will not run long and will be limited to two artists per day by reasons of protecting the cave’s ecosystem.

More info about ticket for this event will follow on Monday, April 22, 2019.

“The Cave Between Worlds” addresses to a small attendance giving the overall capacity of the cave. Accessing the cave is not suitable for claustrophobic people since there is a pretty narrow entrance.

Facebook event page here:

https://www.facebook.com/events/2242738989376437/

Live at Phobos X online!

As we slowly emerge from the desert and turn our gaze towards new horizons, this final re-interpretation of the Erēmos material becomes a landmark on the path endless and ever-deviating.

Thanks to Martin Stürtzer/Phobos Festival.

“Temples” – new artwork by KTL!

Behold! “Temples” – new artwork by KTL, created for Arktau Eos in connection with our appearance at Blowup Festival later this year.


Watercolour on handmade paper, 21 x 20 cm (2019). A place to revere unknown gods, as universal and ever-present as they are nameless.

Six different evenings, six different sets, an unknown number of portals now wide open…

Arktau Eos wish to thank Hexvessel and crew for a truly special time. In some strange way, everything made perfect sense, and it is our hope this came across to everyone who attended the shows. Thank you & until next time!

Those who wanted to see us in Germany but missed this tour are advised that there is still a chance to witness variations on the Erēmos themes at the Phobos Festival in Wuppertal next weekend, on March 16th. A link to the event will be posted in comments below.

Live photo credits: Simon Lucas (London), Benjamin Sperling (Cologne).

Arktau Eos & Hexvessel tour February 2019!

Arktau Eos are overjoyed to announce we will join Hexvessel on tour next month. We will open the ceremonies on the following nights:

  • 17th February – Hamburg – DE (venue tba)
  • 18th Feburary – Urban Spree – Berlin – DE
  • 19th February – Neues Schauspiel – Leipzig – DE
  • 20th February – Club Nine – Utrecht – NL
  • 21st February – tba
  • 22nd February – St John Church, Bethnal Green – UK

More info to be announced soon! Meanwhile, visit Hexvessel facebook for event pages:

https://www.facebook.com/hexvessel/