RIYL: Spiritual droned out psychedelic mantras served with layers of fuzz and reverb

Label: Fuzz Club Records

After years of rumours and a community in dire need of a reissue, it’s finally happening!!! Fuzz Club Records is treating us with a 10 year anniversary edition of this mindbending album by the Icelandic cult psychedelic trio Dead Skeletons!
“He who fears death cannot enjoy life” – Dead Mantra
Dead Skeletons are more than a band, they are rock n roll spirit guides, exploring the depths of light and dark, life and death, and all the spaces in-between in which a soul can find itself wandering through karmic iterations.

This bunch is at the core of what psychedelic expression is all about in both sound and vision! Dead Skeletons was originally summoned for an art-exibit project in Iceland back in 2008 (with the track “Dead Mantra”) by Nonni Dead (Jón Sæmundur Auðarson) and also features Singapore Sling member Henrik Björnsson and Asteroid #4‘s  Ryan Van Kriedt.  The project quickly grew into a spiritual vessel of immense magnitude with grand explorations of shamanic trance inducing droned out psychedelic sounds. Gaining quite the reputation both for their visuals and sounds, their debut 10″ EP “Dead Mantra” was released by Anton Newcombe (the Brian Jonestown Massacre) via his label A Records in 2010, followed by their only studio-album “Dead Magick” in 2011. If you’re lucky enough to find any of the two A pressings of the album you better be ready to trade some mad money for it.. They’ve also released a few additional singles and EPs that are exceedingly hard to come by.

Visual art has remained implicit to Dead Skeletons, with many album covers originating as paintings, and Nonni painting on canvas as part of the group’s live show. Nonni also maintains his own art practice, gallery, and a range of hand painted t­‐shirts, all under the label DEAD.  Dead  Skeletons’ creative practice explores themes of death and mortality, often through the lens of  Buddhism and its karmic cycle. The band’s logo – a skull encircled with their mantra ‘He who fears death cannot enjoy life’ has become an iconic symbol in the underground scene, apparent in countless t-­shirts, posters and tatoos.

There’s 500 Colored- and 500 Black Vinyl rekkids being pressed up of this anniversary edition, ain’t gonna last til Christmas…

The Details

Ten-year anniversary reissue of Dead Skeletons' cult debut album. Due for release December 17th 2021. Both versions come as a 180g double LP with remastered audio by James Plotkin, tip-on printed gatefold sleeve and printed inner-sleeves.

To celebrate the ten-year anniversary of ‘Dead Magick’, Fuzz Club are announcing a vinyl reissue of the debut album from Icelandic psychedelic art-rock project Dead Skeletons. In the decade since it was originally released on 11/11/11 via Anton Newcombe’s A Recordings label, ‘Dead Magick’ has come to be seen as one of this generation’s definitive works of neo-psychedelia and had an almost cult-like reverence attached to it. Tours around the UK, EU and USA, major international festival dates and critical acclaim soon followed the album’s release, and it also helped to catalyse a burgeoning underground psych scene to whom ‘Dead Magick’s occult sonic belligerence became a crucial and highly-lauded touchstone. A twelve-track masterclass in “transportative far-out guitar hymnals” (as described by The Quietus’ Luke Turner), the ‘Dead Magick’ double album was an exercise in spiritual rock’n’roll drones shaped by primitive fuzzed-out guitars, repetitive vocal mantras, distorted organs and crashing percussion.

Inspired by bandleader Jón Sæmundur Auðarson’s own diagnosis with HIV, the driving philosophy behind Dead Skeletons (and the wider ‘DEAD’ concept that Jón, aka Nonni Dead, has been exploring since 2003) is defined by the ‘He who fears death cannot enjoy life’ chant heard on the album’s declarative opening track, ‘Dead Mantra’. The underground hit was the first song released by Dead Skeletons – comprising Jón, Henrik Björnsonn (Singapore Sling), Ryan Carlson and Aislinn Van Kriedt (Asteroid #4) – and laid out the band’s intentions from the off: to use music as a means to inspire people to celebrate and cherish life unshackled from fears and anxieties over their mortality. “I created the DEAD concept in 2003 as an idea to use art as a therapy to overcome the fear of death and to enjoy life to the fullest. I had been dealing with the HIV virus since 1994 and wanted to use my art skills to explore this idea further and spread positive messages to help other people in the same position as myself”, the Reykjavik-based artist recalls.

The 2021 reissue on Fuzz Club Records comes on 180g black/coloured vinyl in a tip-on printed gatefold sleeve with printed inner-sleeves and remastered audio courtesy of James Plotkin.

Price $31

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