The Living Jarboe* ‎– Disburden Disciple

Not On Label ‎– none

Tracklist Hide Credits

1 Bound 6:56
2 Consume Me
Narrator – Rico (16)
3 Dear 666 5:12
4 Kiss Of Life
Songwriter [Music] – Brian Castillo
5 Scorpion 6:44
6 Under
Piano – Nick Pagan
7 The Seance
Backing Vocals – Diana Obscura, Renee Nelson
8 Forbid
Engineer, Co-producer – Yariv MalkaViolin – Eva Saban
9 Forgive 6:22
10 Scarification 5:01
11 Pure War
Lyrics By – Cedric Victor-DeSouza



Mastered by Griffin Mastering.

These recordings were made in Atlanta and Israel.
Rough Textural "field recordings" within 'Pure War' made in: Jerusalem + Ramallah + Bethlehem.

Wolves in 'Under' recorded at Wolf Haven Nature Reserve, Washington.



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July 7, 2015
edited over 3 years ago

Disburden Disciple was recorded in Atlanta and Israel in 2000. Broadly speaking, tracks 1 to 10 represent three styles: highly experimental art songs, uptempo tracks with drum machine and melodious ballads.

The mid-tempo number Consume Me is an exception to the above as it has a funk flavour. Over rattling percussion, Jarboe takes turns singing and reciting, and a male vocal is heard at the beginning and end.

The dance tracks with drum machine include Scarification, where percussion creates an appealing backdrop for the lead and wailing backing vocals. The voice rises to a frightening intensity towards the end. In its lyrical style, Bound resembles the list of Red on the 1991 album Thirteen Masks. As it picks up momentum, Bound morphs into roaring guitar rock which is soon joined by Jarboe’s exuberant vocal gymnastics.

Dear 666 is an art song with an eerie mix of slow lead vocal and unhinged whispers over atmospheric guitar and bass. Rock and rolling piano frame the anguished voice on Under where atmospheric dissonance appears in the form of howling wolves and increasingly tortured vocals.

A spooky tinkling, rattling sound opens Kiss of Life. From the whispering voices and choirs several of Jarboe’s famous vox personae emerge to create a glorious oscillatory effect. There are also brief symphonic interludes of guitar and bass. The most extreme experimental track The Séance is like a chamber music piece performed simultaneously in this world and the realm of the dead. An ensemble of choirs, single and sampled voices interact with piano, percussion, guitar, cello and strings.

One of the album’s highlights is the moving poem Scorpion which is carried on soulful bass and ringing guitar. There’s some resemblance to the magnificent song Forever on Anhedoniac except that Scorpion never reaches a positive conclusion. The heart remains desperately sick here, even in its resignation.

More conventional songs include the melodic Forbid and Forgive. Both are adorned by appealing instrumental patterns. The first is a tragic love song with lovely rhythmic guitar and the second a love ballad with an undulating feel.

The album ends on a world music note with Pure War, an Arabic chant. Over two thirds of the track Jarboe provides choral backing vocals to the chanting male voice before she starts singing. This percussive masterpiece is on a par with the Egyptian and Lebanese pieces on My Life In The Bush of Ghosts by David Byrne and Brian Eno.

Owing to its uncompromising experimental approach, Disburden Disciple may not be Jarboe’s most accessible work. However, no fan ought to be without it on account of gems like Scorpion, Forbid, Forgive and Pure War.