Special times call for special measures: Corvus Corax, the kings of minstrels, are back in the middle of the pandemic with a spontaneous audio book project. With medieval instruments, atmospheric sound design and spoken word, they bring Edgar Allan Poe's “The Mask of Red Death” to our ears.
Connoisseurs of the history of the medieval music scene in Germany know: this story was brought to life as medieval rock by Feeling B. (one of Rammstein's predecessor projects) in 1993. Corvus Corax were also involved in the background as a source of ideas. In the past few months, almost 30 years later, the idea arose to initiate a new, pandemic-inspired version of this setting and to counter this dreary pandemic time with the bloodthirsty and brutal story of 1842.
With bagpipes, shawms, drums and all sorts of other historical instruments, Corvus Corax provides the historical sound image for this story alluding to the plague that raged in Europe from 1347-1351. Read by Castus Karsten Liehm and produced in the band's own studio, this work soaked in horror and blood is a unique creative project of the pandemic. But that's not all - the band is not only promising a German-language version, but is currently working on different versions in several languages which will be published digitally in short order. The Spanish version is currently being worked on by band member and bagpiper Victor Aloudist Blumen. The English is being recorded by American artist and musician John Harford. Additional languages are planned.
However, the Berlin musicians do not remain in the terrifying vision of the original story. In the hope of a quick revival of culture and thus also of concert opportunities, the newly adapted version of the “Mask of the Red Death” ends with an original ecstatic concert after the end of the pandemic.
Long live culture, long live music: Venus, Vina, Musica!
Photo Credits: (1)-(3) Corvus Corax (unknown/website).