Black Market Activities presents the long-awaited return of BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS, pioneers in the field of extreme, progressive music. Marking the start of a new era for the band, BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS‘ second full-length, Horrorscension, is set for an October 23rd release.
In the five years since their last album, Skullgrid, much has transpired in the BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS camp. 12-string Warr guitarist Colin Marston expanded his musical outlets, founding avant-black metal band Krallice and joining progressive death metal legends Gorguts. In addition to his playing, Marston increased his output as a recording engineer, helping create albums for such artists as Kayo Dot, Orthrelm, Jarboe, and Altar of Plagues. Original drummer Charlie Zeleny departed, to be replaced by the prolific Weasel Walter, renowned for his long-running band The Flying Luttenbachers and his widespread collaborations in the free jazz, noise, and metal genres.
Horrorscension is the inaugural release of the new BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS lineup — Marston, Walter, and unholy shredder Mike Lerner on guitar. (In the spirit of defining Horrorscension as the beginning of a new era for the band, the ellipsis ["..."] is being removed from the band name.)
In crafting Horrorscension, BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS employed their signature method of composing the music in written form before ever playing it. Marston elaborates:
“Since our music is written down and then learned, like classical music, we’re never actually building songs based on our playing ability. It’s very different from jamming out a bunch of riffs.”
Horrorscension showcases BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS‘ jaw-dropping, complex music, delivered with a raw, visceral attack — something closer to punk than to the antiseptic sound of music school perfectionism that is all too common amongst young technical bands. Widely regarded as a band of virtuosos, Marston, Walter, and Lerner are quick to separate themselves from the showboaters.Says Marston:
“I accept that the music is not for a general audience and that musicians are more likely to relate to it due to the density, but I see a huge difference between this band and say, Yngwie Malmsteen or Dream Theater or anyone who really wants you to notice how proficient they are. I would love it if, when people hear Horrorscension, they think ‘Whoa, what the hell is going on?’ rather than ‘Wow, they can play their instruments well’. I want the focus to be on the content, not the performance.”
Horrorscension was recorded, mixed, and mastered by Marston at his The Thousand Caves studio in Queens, NY. The cover art is once again by longtime BEHOLD THE ARCTOPUS collaborator Terry Grow.