Nature and Organisation "Beauty Reaps the Blood of Solitude" CDPosted on Friday, October 21st, 2011 @ 6:00am » permalink
I discovered English "neo-folk" act Nature and Organisation about a year-and-a-half ago through The Feast of Hate and Fear Internet Music Show's "The Dark Side of Folk Music" episode (it's #14, about halfway down the page) – which is one of the best mixes I've ever downloaded. I bought a shitload of music in the months that followed, and am still planning to further explore a number of other artists as a result, so I highly recommend checking it out if this niche intrigues you. I really don't listen to a ton of this stuff beyond a handful of Death in June and Sol Invictus albums, but I do enjoy the genre and am always curious to hear more when I can. That being said, a number of these bands have absolutely massive discographies, and there are all sorts of weird little interconnected relationships between collaborating artists, record labels, etc. that I just can't keep track of. The same is true for Nature and Organisation, though their discography is actually quite limited, so I'm really not going to get into a ton of history here, as I'm simply not qualified with my limited knowledge (the same goes for my familiarity with this genre as a whole, really).
Nature and Organisation was led by Michael Cashmore, and the act's first release was a cassette in 1986. But aside from a few obscure compilation appearances, it wasn't until 1994 that Nature and Organisation truly resurfaced. It was a bit of a "golden year" for the group – releasing both the "Beauty Reaps the Blood of Solitude" full-length and an EP ("A Dozen Summers Against the World", which featured three tracks from the full-length alongside 11+ minute epic "A Dozen Winters of Loneliness") via the Durtro label. Perhaps more "classically" or "traditionally" influenced than some of the more well-known acts within this realm, the material is still built upon a foundation of "apocalyptic"/"neo-folk" staples accented by dark experimental noise textures and such. Of course, that the album's vocal contributions are handled by familiarly top-notch artists such as David Tibet (Current 93), Rose McDowall (Strawberry Switchblade), and Douglas P. (Death in June), doesn't hurt, so… the lush, striking compositions represent songwriting that, at its best, is some of the finest I've heard from such circles. As stated above, I'm no expert here, and I just can't speak very accurately about this genre, so my only goal (as always) is to recommend some music you might not have have encountered otherwise. I'm including below a link to "A Dozen Winters of Loneliness", as it was recorded during the same year and fits in perfectly with the tracks from the album. See what you think?
Unfortunately, all of this material is long out of print, and it appears there are no plans for proper reissues anytime soon. A real shame, because the prices you'll find out there are astronomically high. Oh well, what can you do…?