OCTOBERFEAST – The Grand Conjuration


As intimated in previous post, OCTOBERFEAST is going to get pretty damn metal. Since its inception heavy metal has been identified as sharing genetic material with Halloween — a predilection for the occult, the subversion of the innocent and a profound respect for Satan. Of the metal family tree, the cousin most closely related to Hallow’s Eve would have to be DEATH METAL!

Hailing from the uber-metal Sweden, Opeth are goddamn masters of heavy metal. The mindchild of Mikael Akerfeldt, Opeth can alternatively play the heaviest shit imaginable and ballads that will make you weep. Unlike a lot of metal acts, Akerfeldt’s growls are balanced with a crooning sweet enough to lullaby a baby to sleep. With stylistic versatility, musical virtuosity and a knack for tune-crafting, Opeth are in a league of their own.

Yes, these Swedish rockers are capable of holding their own against the songwriters of most genres. But this is OCTOBERFEAST, so I’m going to focus in on Opeth’s ability to conjure the Devil. In fact, I’m fairly certain that The Grand Conjuration is about just such a divinely-defiant act.

The Grand Conjuration is the seventh track of Ghost Reveries, a loose concept album [arguably] about one man’s emotional distress after killing his own mother.  This track in particular  seems to be some sort of an appeal to the Dark Lord himself.

The hands of Satan
Assembling his flock.
Pale horse rider
Scouring the earth.

Whispered conjuration –
A belief takes form.
Choking hand tapping
The veins in your throat.

His orders in your mouth
A decree for domination.
Beneath the tides of wisdom
Spins the undertow of hate.

I’m not 100% sure what the above lyrics mean, but I know that they’re fucking evil. I can just picture a dark priest from a Stephen King novel reciting those lines as he prepares to sacrifice a school bus of Girl Scouts.

As an added bonus, the music video for The Grand Conjuration is a perfect treat for any OCTOBERFEAST evening. In addition to the standard “dudes in an empty warehouse” motif, the video features trash-can fires, rats, and interrogations conducted by a creep who looks like a  cross between Zorro and Frank Miller’s The Spirit (yes — Frank Miller’s, not Will Eisner’s).

Also, because Gene Hoglan was touring with Opeth at the time he makes an appearance. An automatic +5 points.

I’m not sure if the Devil listens to music. But if He does, I’d like to think He’s an Opeth fan.