Mohammad’s troika of contrabass, electric cello and oscillations opened proceedings with solemn, funereal intensity. Their recent PAN release Som Sakrifis is all splintered strings floating above blackened valleys; fleeting, sonorous monuments – shifting sands in an antique land.
A prescient prelude to the main event then.
LSO St Luke’s was plunged into darkness for the headliners, focusing attention on the sumptuous moving images. Dakus Films treacle-paced footage of Portuguese dancer Romeu Runa was shot in an industrial complex outside Lisbon and is a fitting complement to Raime’s creeping, somnambulant music.
The volume and intensity of the show was finely tuned to the acoustically treated space (think a rationalised Winterfell not your local parish church). The spacious structure of the music permitting satisfying tails of reverb, billowing in the wake of stannic kick drums.
The tactile hum of the creeping dub wasteland is mirrored by the glacial pace and macroscopic perspective of the footage – measured velocity and strangled depth of field create moments of abstraction and complex falling signifiers. Bodies become landscapes, gravity burns to a halt and the Four Elements sidestep cliché to clutch at the throat of the visceral.