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Fakir Of The Silver Mask

November 18, 2021

Back in 2002, in the era of CDs, marketing a new release took ages so you couldn’t release an album or track every day like you can now. It took time to manufacture, print, advertise, distribute etc. Secret Archives of the Vatican was prolific and had been busy with releases so there was a need to use another name to get some new music out. Thousand Yard Prayer was essentially Vince’s project and Louis wasn’t involved. The release was Sympathy For Hosea.

A ten year gap – then from 2012, there were several more releases but recently it’s been quiet for a while. Anyway – time to remedy that oversight! Here’s a new track, as hard to categorise as anything we do. It’s called Fakir Of The Silver Mask.

As always, it can be steamed, downloaded free or you can choose to pay a little, all from Bandcamp. It’ll be on all other major streaming and download sites on 26 November 2021.

Two new releases from Secret Archives of the Vatican

November 18, 2021

We’ve released two tracks a week apart. One is medieval in feel, Stronghold, and one is Dark Age, pre-medieval in feel, Sköll the Sun​-​Devourer. We’re aware that we’re exploring new musical areas but we hope that long-time followers will come on this journey with us. In fact, we’ve always had a medieval influence on our music and there were medieval tunes on one or two of our early cassette releases.

We will release an album 7 January 2022 called Paladin and it will feature these tunes plus a few that have not been released as singles.

The Oath That Binds

October 22, 2021

Here’s our latest single release.

An Icelandic woman once said: Ég sór eiðinn sem bindur

Our music is genre-defying, featuring anything from Viking, Saxon, middle eastern and medieval instruments to bass electronica. This is neofolk, Dark Age Music, music for those with imaginations.

It’s also on Spotify.

Hjarta Slær Hægt

October 1, 2021

Hjarta Slær Hægt is Icelandic for Heart Beats Slow. This tune, like many of our current tunes, features frame drums and throat singing. There is a mandola and a bombarde too! Unlike many of our recent tunes, however, there’s a powerful electronica base (and bass) to this track. Our worlds merge.

We accidentally released this one week after our previous release, Thrymheim. There should be about three or four weeks between singles, according to the music marketing experts. Oh, well, I don’t think it’ll make any difference anyway.

Hjarta Slær Hægt is on all major streaming and download sites and all our music links are HERE.


September 23, 2021

We’ve been quiet on here lately, mostly because a lot of our effort has been going into Instagram and YouTube instead and because almost no-one ever reads our blog or responds. Anyway, we should rectify that, somehow.

Here’s a single, Thrymheim, due out Friday 24 September 2021. It continues with our current explorations of northern European traditions. If you’d like to download it, we’d suggest using Bandcamp.

Hiraeth is out now

July 9, 2021

Hiraeth is out now on all major streaming and download sites.

We’re very happy with this collection of tunes. It brings together our newer neofolk, Dark Ages, music with elements of the electronica we’ve released in recent years. We think our older and newer fans will like it.

Hiraeth is a Welsh word, hard to translate, meaning a spiritual longing for a home which maybe never was, a nostalgia for ancient places to which we can never return. It is the echo of lost stories, our ancestral memory. It is in the wind, the rocks, the waves, the deep forests. It is nowhere and it is everywhere.

The downloaded Bandcamp version has a bonus remix and has individual track art and notes.

Links to all the major places you can stream or download Hiraeth from are here:

The Great Heathen Army

July 2, 2021

Here’s the second single from our forthcoming album, Hiraeth. Its’s exploring slightly new musical areas for us and features band member Louis Counter on bass guitar, an instrument we haven’t used very much in our musical history.

The Saxon Shore

May 27, 2021

Here’s a new tune. It’ll be released as a single in June 2021 and then it’ll be on our next album shortly after that. This is unusual for us in that it has a vocal of sorts. As you know, this last year we’ve been exploring Viking, medieval, neofolk sounds and here we’ve started to bring that into our more traditional transglobal breakbeat dub science sound. Some Croydon bass wub wub in the mix! Please let us know what you think.

Carve the Runes

May 7, 2021

We’ve just released our latest album, Carve the Runes. In these tracks, we explore iron age and pre medieval history and mythologies, using mostly real or sampled medieval and Viking era acoustic instruments.

We have used drones and repetition often in our music but here we’ve dug deeper, working to attain a ritualistic feel to some of the tracks. Recently, we’ve been listening to artists such as Heilung, Wardruna and Danheim, and we’ve tried to capture some of that epic primal feel, particularly with our percussion.

The Battle of Clontarf

March 26, 2021

We’ve released five single tracks so far this year, The Battle of Clontarf being number five. The title refers to a historical event, a battle between Vikings and Irish Gaels in 1014 AD. We’re very happy with the video too – you can see it on the Bandcamp page linked to below or on our YouTube channel.

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