We’ve seen music as catharsis, music as rage incarnate, and – all too often – music as opportunistic money grabs, which is odd considering nine times out of ten “success” in metal simply means maybe you can cut your other job down from 40 hours a week to maybe 20. So it’s not only refreshing but vital to see the myriad expressions of noise band Qoheleth navigate the thorny issues of faith as it collides against the realities of the modern world and the blocking power of strict doctrine using a variety of media. But since this is Visions ov Hell, we’ll focus for now on their debut video “Advance of Inhumanity.”
Qoheleth, taken from the Book of Ecclesiastes is Hebrew for “teacher” or “preacher” and centers on the search for meaning in the human and temporary world. It also happens to be the brainchild of Nine Circle’s own Jeremy Hunt, which I bring up only so I can tell you a) how ridiculously proud Nine Circles is to have one of our own pursue their dream of releasing, in Jeremy’s own words “something that tens of people will listen to and adore,” and b) if you know Jeremy’s taste in music, you’ll understand that Qoheleth is noise in the purest sense: this isn’t hard and sludgy rock and roll with the feedback turned up. This is an experiment in the collision of tectonic plates of sound, and it isn’t meant to be pretty or easy to understand.
Which is the point of both “Advance of Inhumanity” and their album God Is the Warmest Place to Hide. The album, video, and mixed media artwork that accompanies it serves a secondary purpose: it’s the thesis project for Hunt’s Master of Arts in Theology. Directed by Jonathan Petkau (who’s also contributed to Nine Circles when not busy with his own musical endeavors) “Advance of Inhumanity” presents a narrative best left to your interpretation, but the act of an outside force welcomed in only to pick and steal through your life resonates however you categorize the characters in the video. Check it out below:
Couple my adoration of the DIY ethic in music with Qoheleth’s mission to continue and expand their quest to explore through, in their words, “disassemble and reassemble what we see, experience, and believe about God and creation” and you have something I plan to dig into with relish in the coming weeks. If this taste intrigued you, then you’ll be in for a surprise when their debut album, God is the Warmest Place to Hide, drops later this week.