Let's have a taste of the Finnish Darkwave music with Scorpio Doctrine: formed in 2013 by H. Aorta, later joined by bass player O. Kaukua. The martial industrial act¹ uses its music as a support to vehicle "the fundamental & ecstatic shadow aspects of human experience and religion". Quite interesting themes we learn about through Scorpio Doctrine's unique perspective. Mid December of last year, their first EP "Via Liminalis" got released through Saturnal Records and includes four tracks.
H. Aorta - vocals, guitars, keyboards, percussions, programming & kangling
O. Kaukua - bass guitar
The EP begins with "Dudael" and its epic and pagan like intro. This song describes a warrior from his/her victim's point of view. We are shown "the strange beauty" of the warrior's actions and looks: he/she is beautiful ,holding a decapitated head, wearing the victim's skin and stabbing his still beating heart. Metaphors in this song turn the awful into beauty: severed hands become chimes that accompanies a choir of angels, the smell of blood becomes a sweet fragance and corpses become the warrior's jewels. Going with these lyrics are eerie like synths and also an acoustic guitar that contrasts nicely with the trumpet (of the Apocalypse?) sounds.
With "Paraclete2 Mother Immaculate" the eeries and the guitar melody continue but this time there are added organs and heavy and dark piano chords. These give this song a very sick and tormented atmosphere. As for the lyrics, I wonder if the character named "Mother" is the warrior described in Dudael. She "raises the knife" and "takes the heart and the head". Mother is described as "Love and Hate", "Liberation and Death", "Darkness and Fear" and "Satan and Christ". This character represents the things we cannot explain and fear and in the last verse, the one we offer ours heads "at the end of our days". Is this Mother death itself, who opens the gate to the Heavens for us?
"The Wounded Healer" is pretty similar to Paraclete Mother Immaculate in terms of music, only quieter and slower, with these metallic synths as the main melody. What is interesting in this song are its lyrics: there are so many ways to understand them. Do we "lick the wounds of the ones we love" to heal them? Do we "drink from the wounds of the ones we hurt" to kill them faster? It is also told that "it is not the wounded chest that hurts the most but the cage that is built with hope and fear". This makes me think of the power religion has upon men, that could hurt more than physical pain. Those lyrics are open to all interpretations I think. Like the sacred writings, maybe?
This EP ends with its best song, "The Dragon Called Christ". The creepy synths and the background choir, along with the piano and the rhythm of the guitar, gives a really nice instrumental. The lyrics tell about the human nature and how it is not different from, you may have already guessed, the Christ. We all "yearn over borders of this world" and it is as men that we "travel beyond recognition as archons immaculate". The chorus is pretty epic, with its statement that we're all Christs, with the same powers and suffers and that under "our dark lover, liminal star", we all face death as men. I think the choice of referring to Christ being a dragon isn't random. Dragons are mythical creatures, so is Christ a myth too in this song?
I recommend to check out this EP, as these four songs could make you wonder about certain aspects of religion and the human nature you may have not thought about before. Scorpio Doctrine made me discover martial industrial music, so if you're interested in discovering a new genre, or if you're a fan of dark ambient music, I suggest you listen to this band.
1 The term "martial industrial" describes music that has neofolk, dark ambient and neoclassical influences, mixed with marches and synthetic sounds. The lyrics that go with this are philosophical and often contain historical references.
2 The word "Paraclete" is old greek for "helper" or "comforter". It refers to the Holy Spirit in Christianity.
Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/scorpiodoctrine
Official Website : http://www.saturnalrecords.com/scorpiodoctrine.html
(Review done by Elodie)