Current 93 / HÖH* ‎– Island

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Versions (12)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
DURTRO 006 CD Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album) Durtro DURTRO 006 CD UK 1991 Sell This Version
Durtro 006 Current 93 / HOH* Current 93 / HOH* - Island(LP, TP) Durtro Durtro 006 UK 1990 Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(LP, Album, Ltd) Durtro DURTRO 006 UK 1991 Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(LP, Album, Ltd, TP) Durtro DURTRO 006 UK 1991 Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(LP, Ltd, TP, W/Lbl) Durtro DURTRO 006 UK 1991 Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 CD Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album, RP) Durtro DURTRO 006 CD UK 1993 Sell This Version
none Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(Cass, Album, Unofficial) Not On Label none Malaysia 2013 Sell This Version
none HÖH* / Current 93 HÖH* / Current 93 - Island(13xFile, MP3, Album, 320) Not On Label (Current 93 Self-released) none Canada 2014
8-493 Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album, Ltd, Unofficial) ArsNova 8-493 Russia Unknown Sell This Version
8-493 Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album, Ltd, Unofficial) ArsNova 8-493 Russia Unknown Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 CD Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album, RP) Durtro DURTRO 006 CD UK Unknown Sell This Version
DURTRO 006 CD Current 93 / HÖH* Current 93 / HÖH* - Island(CD, Album, RP, Uni) Durtro DURTRO 006 CD UK Unknown Sell This Version

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ultimathulerecords

ultimathulerecords

December 2, 2016
referencing Island, CD, Album, DURTRO 006 CD
Höh/Current 93 - ISLAND (Durtro 006) LP 37m, CD 62m
Now what's this? David Tibet along with an Icelandic keyboard/multi-instrumentalist is what! Who would have expected a prog-rock cum synth music twist on the later Current 93 sound? I certainly didn't! Actually, the results are quite enjoyable, certainly easier to come to grips with than the folk hymns of recent C93 albums. Though I wonder, is this serious - or is David pulling a big joke? Whatever, it's guaranteed to puzzle and perplex. Perhaps this was the intention!
From "Keeping up with the Current" - an overview of recent Current 93 and related issues, by Alan Freeman (Audion #22. July 1992)
bullfinchart

bullfinchart

May 30, 2016
referencing Island, CD, Album, DURTRO 006 CD
I'm going to be fair on Island and review it as the original eight track LP version, ignoring the trio of comedy songs that completely derail the CD edition (entertaining in their own right, but totally, totally out of place here).

David Tibet reunited with HÖH on a trip to the latter's homeland of Iceland, and together they recorded an album of immense beauty. Although some of the synth sounds used root the album firmly in the time it was recorded, their new age sheen is no bother to me - I have a huge fondness for such digital sounds.

All eight songs here are phenomenally beautiful, although there are three particular highlights: opener 'Falling', featuring Bjork on backing vocals, is a phenomenal way to open the record. Bjork's voice adds an incredible emotional depth to the piece, despite being so low in the mix. 'Passing Horses', although fully entrenched in the new age synth sound, soars on majestic melodies and a passionate performance from Tibet.

Nothing comes close, however, to 'Anyway, People Die'. My all time favourite Current 93 track. Echoes of the aching melancholy found on the first side of Imperium are present, an unearthly rumble of unrecognisible sounds, twinkling bells, and Joolie Wood's beautiful violin crying out from the distance. When Tibet talks about making music for the apocalypse, his more violent sounding songs are often mentioned, but for me this is how the end of the world sounds. The sound of everything dying, the planet collapsing, and a feeling of total hopelessness. An absolute masterpiece.

Lyrically, the album sees Tibet returning to the fields of rape theme once more, whilst the lyrics to 'Lament for My Suzanne' and 'Anyway, People Die' would be revisited shortly after during the sessions for Thunder Perfect Mind. This would be the last time songs overlapped quite so obviously. Indeed, Island is the last record of this era of Current 93, with a more stable lineup and traditional release schedule following shortly after the album's release. Island is a wonderful way to end this era of the group.

Fingers crossed this album gets a remastered reissue soon, minus those damned comedy songs.
Scrap_Iron

Scrap_Iron

March 16, 2016
referencing Island, LP, Album, Ltd, DURTRO 006

It's snowing today, so I went back listening to this absolute masterpiece. "Island" sounds like no other Current 93 album, and not just because of HÖH's glacial keyboards. The atmosphere of these tracks is truly ultimate, as apocalyptic as ever, like standing at the edge of the world during Armageddon. While listening to "Falling", you definitely feel like standing under a snow storm, Björk's haunting backing vocals adding even more beauty to this cornerstone in David Tibet's admirable discography. "The Dream Of The Shadow Of Smoke" might be described as "sad" or "depressing", but to me it's just "cathartic". When the female voices are reciting the final verses, shrivels run down my spine: "So three: I shall cross myself. Four: and hope to die".
The Icelandic-spoken version of "Fields Of Rape", titled "Fields Of Rape And Smoke" and only available on CD version, is another magnificent piece of touching frailness.
This album was a one-shot in Current 93's history, as the following year they would have returned to their accostumed acoustic folk sound with the famous "Thunder Perfect Mind", making "Island" an even more precious cult release for the devoted cultists of unconventional music.
a-parasite

a-parasite

March 16, 2016
edited over 3 years ago
referencing Island, CD, Album, DURTRO 006 CD
My instincts tell me this album was definitely not produced with any sort of tongue in cheek - one would have to be deaf to Tibet's certain brand of humour however if one weren't to notice lashings of it in the bonus tracks, namely 'Crowleymass Unveiled', 'Paperback Honey' and 'The Fall of Christopher Robin'. I think David was, and still is, really over all the fools in the Thelemite/magick scene around the time (late 80s), to the point where he even thought about dropping the Crowley-inspired band name, but he kept it because it just stuck so well. So it's not surprising, in true clowning Laveyan form, that he thought of penning irreverent-sounding ditties which sought to debunk the dull po-facedness of the 20thC occult scene (I mean, isn't it brow-raising, the fact those last two words should even be juxtaposed?) I quite like the 'Crowleymass' song for what it is (cheesy, funny, synth-heavy, iconoclastic occult-pop; it also has an awesome b-side called 'I Arise'), and 'Paperback Honey' is a bit of fun to be sure, but there's no question that tacking them onto the end of this otherwise lovely and solemn, even if somewhat dated album, was likely to be an unpopular decision. At least it's not the rum misstep of 'The Aryan Aquarians', which I'll never get my head around (nor, I think, will they). Silly, offhand self-caricature or not, the 8 tracks that make up 'Island' constitute an essential C93 document, not just of where Tibet & co. were at musically during the pre-TPM period, but that, perhaps along with 'Earth Covers Earth', is the only really great transitional album between the dogs-blood tape-loop era and the golden thunder-perfect apoc-folk era. Don't be dissuaded by anyone's passing opinions if you're just getting into the Current; 'Island' (and arguably the Icelandic era per se) is essential. I'm guessing this will be getting a reissue before too long just like the rest of the discography, most likely with a special edition with extra material. I'm confident David will have the creative initiative to preserve the original LP and let the 8 tracks stand alone.
Beyond_John

Beyond_John

June 14, 2015
referencing Island, LP, Album, Ltd, DURTRO 006
This one has been more difficult for me to get into because of the now dated sound of the keyboards. It's too smooth for me, too rooted in its time because of the keyboard sound (not the lyrics). I have the CD, which contains the bonus tracks, but I think the bonus tracks, done more for a laugh and not of a piece with the rest of the record, take away from this record, so I wish I'd purchased the LP, and maybe the Crowleymass and Christopher Robin stuff on it's own. I haven't listened to this one to give a proper review, but as I obsessively listen to C93 from the beginning to the present, with the exception of this record, says something.
ultimathulerecords

ultimathulerecords

February 25, 2014
referencing Island, CD, Album, DURTRO 006 CD
Now what's this? David Tibet along with an Icelandic keyboard/multi-instrumentalist is what! Who would have expected a prog-rock cum synth music twist on the later Current 93 sound? I certainly didn't! Actually, the results are quite enjoyable, certainly easier to come to grips with than the folk hymns of recent C93 albums. Though I wonder, is this serious - or is David pulling a big joke? Whatever, it's guaranteed to puzzle and perplex. Perhaps this was the intention!
From my review in Audion #22, published in July 1992
FinalSummer

FinalSummer

April 12, 2010
referencing Island, LP, Album, Ltd, DURTRO 006

There were 2000 pressed in vinyl, nearly nothing is reachable. The reason could be the massive tirednessof this album. It´s so dark, scary & depressive, that everyone who had it in his hands won´t give it away anymore. C93 changed their style and ambition in the last 20 years, but i think they had their best time with this one (David, if you read this, don´t be angry).
This album contains hypnotic tunes by Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson who later worked with Sigur Rós. Maybe one day, there will be some collaboration....great idea i think :-)
thezovietdada

thezovietdada

May 9, 2008
referencing Island, CD, Album, DURTRO 006 CD
This is Current 93's "electronic" album, but a perhaps more apt description is that it's their 4ad album. It's what you'd expect from that description, lots of absolutely spine-chillingly beautiful moments ("Falling," "Anyway, People Die") and a fair share of cheesy synth pop ("Crowleymass"). Also, the instrumentation is reminiscent of 4ad greats like This Mortal Coil or especially that 1987 Pieter Nooten & Michael Brook album, "Sleeps With the Fishes." Lots of digital synth pads, bells, and strings, with an austere neo-classical or Arvo Pärt-esque composerly approach. Really any instruments that amp the emotionality up as much as possible. While I know Crowleymass is supposed to be a comedy song, against the other intense, somber works of the album, it's a sour note. Nevertheless the first four songs of the album still nearly bring me to tears, it is definitely reminiscent of Iceland to me (Ísland is Icelandic for Iceland), a special place of crisis, pilgrimage and transition. Things I'm sure it meant for David Tibet as well.