© 2000


John Bergin, Jarboe,Brett Smith

5 out of 5
by Daniel Haskin

Gorgeous sonic landscapes and violent attacks from the people behind Trust Obey, Tertium Non Data and the former voice of Swans. Darkly hypnotic, cinematic and powerfully poetic, Bergin, Smith, and Jarboe spin an aural wonder filled with visions and soul shaking beauty. Blackmouth is as coal dark as it is hauntingly angelic.

The beauty lies in Jarboe and the vocal characterizations that breathe human life to the electronic ambience and shock guitar.

In The Black Pulse Grain rhythmic pulses and bass line encase word and melody as Jarboe’s emotional range is put to the test, cascading from innocence to painful utterance, while The Burn, a mostly spoken word piece, flows across a percussion and guitar landscape in an almost primitive tribal trance.

Two of the most impressive events on this cd are the sensual and brooding Smother and And I Call Myself Hag. Jarboe’s ambient human instrument hovers, soars, and intertwines in these eloquently crafted and softly passionate works.

excerpt from smother . . .
you suffocate me honey,
i see my death in your eyes,
i won’t be taken by you,
you’ll destroy me,
so now i lost you.

Instrumentalists Bergin and Smith have collaborated on various projects ranging from gothic hard-core to cinematic dark improvisational landscapes like their recent release Tertium Non Data (Third is Not Given). In Blackmouth they have crafted darkly toned and hauntingly electronic landscapes that Jarboe has populated and made human.