Themes From Hell #8: The River 7" by Slasher Film Festival Strategy - "Random" color vinyl
40x copies available
* Pressed on 150 gram vinyl
* The isolated score to The Mill River Revenant
* Housed in a screen printed fold-over sleeve
* Newly commissioned art by Sam Heimer
“The river is a setting in this story, but it is not a character.” Much as last year's Halloween release saw author Matthew M. Bartlett tackled the water's edge in “Ginny Greenteeth,” so does the author's tale for the latest installment in Cadabra's music for All Hallow's Eve. “The Mill River Revenant” is a tale of revenge, awash – so to speak – in astonishing cruelty, born of sadness and want.
Bartlett's narrative concerns the yearnings of a mother, Abigail, cast out by her husband, Henry, for drunkenness. The reek of whiskey surrounds her “like an amber cloud” when she supplicates herself to him, desperate to reunite with her family. Specifically, she wishes to see her children, Phillip and Roger, but Henry has found a new wife, Constance, and the river becomes a solution to all her problems. Or so she thinks. Her story becomes one for the ages, and it carries on and on until there are “legions of the drowned,” all “lost under the river's roar.”
The music of Slasher Film Festival Strategy evokes the auditory environs of a classic horror film. The piano is assertively stentorian throughout, while the synthesizers provide a high-toned foil. As Abigail suggests to her sons, “their feet, squelching in the mud,” “Shall we go into the river?” the music has a sudden, booming declension, announcing that it is all about to go downward.
The synthesizers are more than just musical accompaniment, as well. They swirl and rush about like the Mill River itself, and also crack and pop behind talk of an autumn backyard bonfire, creating a sonic world to go hand-in-hand with Anthony D.P. Mann's reading. The voice of the narrator rises in horror, drops to a terrified whisper, and channels the ache of pain and loss with elegant finesse, and so do Slasher Film Festival Strategy's tones, leaving the listener to wonder: is water just water? Is a river just a river? Or, is it truly a graveyard?