Elijah's Mantle

Elijah's Mantle

Real Name:
Mark St. John Ellis
Profile:
The studio based musical project of Mark St.John Ellis founded in 1993.

The music is repetitive and sequential, using studio technology, sampled orchestral instruments, loops and an experimentation with sound. Earlier albums used sacred texts of various religions sung by one or more voices double tracked to create a choral effect. The mid albums used poetry and literature, set to music with the spoken word. Apart from the retrospective of 2010 the later albums re-invented pieces through the process of cut and paste incorporating drum loops. Elijah's Mantle also works in film and sound installation.

The project was released in CD and VHS format by the London based distribution company World Serpent Distribution on the label De Nova Da Capo. The distribution company ceased trading in 2005 and Elijah's Mantle now releases through its own website
Sites:
Aliases:
Variations:
[a49837]

Artist

Elijah's Mantle Discography Tracks

Albums

DNDC 001 CD Elijah's Mantle Angels Of Perversity(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 001 CD UK 1993 Sell This Version
DNDC 002 CD Elijah's Mantle Remedies In Heresies(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 002 CD UK 1994 Sell This Version
DNDC 003 CD Elijah's Mantle Sorrows Of Sophia(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 003 CD UK 1995 Sell This Version
DNDC 006 CD Elijah's Mantle Betrayals And Ecstasies(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 006 CD UK 1996 Sell This Version
DNDC 009 CD Elijah's Mantle Poets And Visionaries(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 009 CD UK 1997 Sell This Version
DNDC 012 CD Elijah's Mantle Psalms From Invocations(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 012 CD UK 1999 Sell This Version
DNDC 013 CD Ozymandias / Elijah's Mantle Ozymandias / Elijah's Mantle - The Soul Of Romanticism(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 013 CD UK 1999 Sell This Version
DNDC 014 CD Elijah's Mantle Legacy Of Corruption(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 014 CD UK 2000 Sell This Version
DNDC015 CD Elijah's Mantle Breath Of Lazarus(CD, Album) De Nova Da Capo DNDC015 CD UK 2002 Sell This Version

Compilations

DNDC 017 CD Elijah's Mantle Observations Of An Atheist(CDr, Album, Comp, Ltd) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 017 CD UK 2010 Sell This Version

Videos

DNDC 005V Elijah's Mantle Philosophy With A Hammer(VHS) De Nova Da Capo DNDC 005V UK 1995 Sell This Version

Reviews

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enfantterrible

enfantterrible

September 1, 2014
It is said at the Elijah´s Mantle website that the compilation "Observations of an atheist" will be closing up the band´s creative process as Mark St John Ellis will be now dedicated to a new project with a different perspective, so it is the end of vast investigation in the camp of the sacred and the profane mixed into just one solid musical ground.

In the 17 years that the band was alive it demonstrated the erudition and study that applied meticulously to each work which in the end resulted being just one body work, a profound recognition of the many faces of the divine. From the classic inspired "Angels of perversity" in which the study of man as the center of universe stands a very high rank to the subsequent works that develop further. During the following years we will witness of the progress of such investigations. The evolution from the atomistic to the macro-structure from the minimalist to the perfectionism of the music in poetry made music!
If "Angels of perversity" touched the subject of the divinity in man appropiated from the Hellenistic and pagan tradition (Notice the perfect cover of Antinoo choosen as emblem) next album will find Elijah´s mantle performing an investigation of the topic of divinity under the precepts of Gnostic Christianism in "Remedies in Heresies" and followed by the amazingly dark "Sorrows of Sophia" once again full of Pagan implications.

But Elijah´s Mantle never demarked perfectly clear where the profane starts and where does end the sacral influences, it is always ambiguous and mysterious, difficult to differentiate and that is where most of the power from this music resides, the chorals for example always convey this half part of Burana´s type chants with the ritual solemnity imposed by the paradox of the orchestral melodies recreated through electronic mediums that add a touch of modern resonance that increases the ambiguity. Gnostic mantras juxtapose sacral chants and medieval composition while the always sweet voices remind of angels chanting lines of pure heresy and lithanies. These set of works are epic in its own majestic simplicity, they really go deep into the heart of the mystery of what we can call, god, the absolute, or the unknown.

The last part of the discography from E.M trascends the spiritual tour de force and wanders in the ellysium in where many of the "poets maudits" such as Baudelaire, Verlaine, Rimbaud and Mallarme live. E.M. gains another level within these works, in where the poetic aspect is a sur plus and the music plays as some sort of perfect accompaniment that suits the inner music of the poems. The voice of Mark St John reciting the poems translated into a perfect classic english simply move deeply the spirit of the listener and brings him into the real dimension of the words expressed and all the pain and pleasures implied. It is in "Poets and visionaries", "Betrayals and ecstasies" and the penultimate album "Legacy of corruption" in where we will observe this sort of descension into the abyss described by the lyricism of such powerful and dark poetry, all the despair and horror contained, all the vision and resonance of the cataclismic forces that they were able to perceive surrounding not only their time but the future they will never see. Our time, our zeitgeist. And Mr Mark does an excellent work, not just translating them to the detail but declaiming them with an almost clerical intonation, once again in which it is just beauty what unifies the sacred and the profane.

In between these works the production of "Psalms from invocations" remits us once again into the realms of mysticism and the ignote, the unknown faces of the divine, the many paths to get in. This is perhaps its more "developed" work into that thematic both musically and lyrically, the elaboration disposed is inmense and the sonorities achieve its deepest finalities.

"Breath of Lazarus" and ultimately "Observations of an atheist" are perhaps reconstructionisms (or remixes if you prefer) from previous tracks that guard special transcendence through their dischography. Personally I prefer the epic electronic arrangements from "Observations of an atheist" better than "Breath of Lazarus" in which I observed this silly poppy concatenation with the music, that in the end results not matching properly or totally unfair with the grace of the harmonies.

A special consideration is given to the mutual work between E.M. & Ozymandias. This is one study work that once again dealt with poetry but this time went through English Romanticism, bringing Byron and Co to the accompaniment palette from an overly well executed piano with spleen undertones (so adequate to the rhythm and music of the poems). It does guard the consistency from the investigation with the poets maudits and intertwines (as well as those) the relation with the communication with the sacral and the profane making it a super elegant work.

It is a shame that things must end, yet, that is the necessary order of the nature of things. The mantle will now cover the mystery and perhaps its grace may share some radiance into the new creations of Mark St John Ellis.
Prost!

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