Texas darkwave duo Sword Collector debuts their new single, “Engulfed In Flame, Unholy,” a bleak narrative set in the near future. Drawing upon sci-fi fare from the likes of Harlan Ellison and Margaret Atwood, the band reveals the explosive impetus behind SHRINE, the band’s two-volume, occult-horror-cum-post-apocalyptic-sci-fi concept album.
SHRINE: Volume I tells the story of a group’s egress from a cult after an explosion in the sky stirs ominous interpretations and escalates authoritarianism within the last colony of the US Midwest. “Engulfed In Flame, Unholy,” the second single and third act of SHRINE: Volume I, finds our separatist group standing in solidarity against the repressive religious regime.
“It’s no mystery what I wanted to say with this song,” muses McCoy. “As a queer brown person living in the US south, I’m constantly tired of the systemic oppression perpetrated by the Christian right of our country. The recent overturning of Roe V Wade (which happened after this song was written) is yet another sinister tentacle of the beast that is the Christofascist, patriarchal, imperialist, capitalist US government. I just wanted to contribute my little voice in speaking dissent.”
The single is powerful and urgent, an excellent morsel of what the concept album has to offer.
Mixed by Phillip Odom (Code Orange, La Dispute, Ceremony), SHRINE: Volume I expands Sword Collector’s sound since their debut. Drawing influences from institutions of classic and contemporary music like Depeche Mode, Kraftwerk, Twin Tribes, and Drab Majesty, Sword Collector seek to make self-discovery sacred over ethereal soundscapes.
SHRINE: Volume I will be released through the record label operated by Cooper’s brick-and-mortar record store, Hybrid Records, on October 28, 2022.
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