On Friday, March 1st, 2013, your humble narrator walked into Kobo Live Music to witness a spellbinding performance by Prosthetic Record's artist Ancient VVisdom. I went into this experience with very little prior exposure to the band. Most of the current buzz on the internet is a little misleading, focusing solely on the fact that frontman Nathan Opposition believes in some forms of satanism and slips the "L" word (Lucifer) into a couple of his songs. Friday night I witnessed a group of talented musicians perform a soulful set of tunes that were in my opinion, more influenced by early blues and rock, than satan. I walked away from this experience an instant fan of AVV.
Everyone likes to throw around genre labels these days. The monotony of some of these hyphenated blank-core labels are getting more complicated than the hyphenated last names of a well traveled trophy wife. If music were really that black and white, and I believed every album or show review I read, I would have expected AVV to sound like a "satanic folk", or "occult-themed heavy rock" band. There is much more to this band than the fantasy metal freak show recent bloggers have made them out to be.
AVV is an experimental five piece based out of Austin Texas and they are definitely keeping it weird. That's weird in a good way. Created by singer/songwriter Nathan Opposition, with his brother Michael Jochum playing electric guitar, and Justin "Ribs" Mason on acoustic guitar. They are backed up by bass guitar (sometimes string bass), and machete/bamboo percussion. Opposition's songs are themed around a future post-apocalyptic society and the darkness that would surely overtake humanity in such a desperate and hopeless environment. This atmosphere is reflected in the simple, raw percussion, and the haunting melodies of "Ribs" acoustic guitar. You can imagine this would be the music played around a barrel fire in a desolate wasteland.
Ancient VVisdom is a wonderful amalgamation of unique elements and an amazing live show. I was drawn in by Nathan's romantically dark lyrics, spellbound by the guitars, and impressed by the simple unobtrusive percussion (And that is coming from a death metal fan). Nathan's vision of a not too distant bleak future reminds us of the coming consequences of our consumer based culture. This realization instantly connects you to AVV's music. I cannot stress enough how refreshingly out of the box this performance is. It is haunting and immediately familiar. AVV feels like home.
Get out there and support AVV live. You will not be disappointed! They are touring with no plans to stop soon. Watch out for their performance at Austin's infamous South by Southwest (SXSW) festival, and an upcoming European tour. Be sure to check out their new album Deathlike, as well as their debut A Godlike Inferno. Remember to keep your music evil. Hail Satan!