Due to arrive in time for yuletide haunting, an imminent arrival from the A Year in the Country folk titled ‘the corn mother’. Based on a lost and aborted Brit folk horror originally intended for release in the ‘70’s. the story told to the tale of villagers haunted by a folk myth of their own making whereby an accidental sacrifice to save their harvest, curses the land and walks the nightmares of the perpetrators responsible eventually taking the village as her own. According to vague accounts, a handful of copies escaped into the public domain in the 80’s , though verification has been hard to come by, thereby affixing it with a growing cult status. This particular collection somewhat serves, not as an imagined soundtrack for the film, but moreover, a post production collection of arrangements scored in its aftermath providing a legacy to the cult of ‘the Corn Mother’. A dark celebration therefore, to the legend, nine disciples gather to share ghost tales, whether fact or fable beneath the watchful glow of Luna’s night light. A liberal seasoning of the familiar and not so familiar grace this ritual ramble, Gavino Morretti opening the creep casting ceremony courtesy of the suspense tingling ‘ritual and unearthly fire’. With its slow clock tocking pensive, a sweetly sinister aura descends, dropping from its orbital station, this prowling ethereal spirals with a chill tipped kosmische flashing much recalling Carpenter’s more mellowed lunar recitals as found on ‘lost themes’ and with it bathing the landscape with a somewhat, calm before the storm, like lull. Schooled in a timeless folk trimming spirited through the generations, Pulselovers – like you’ve never heard them before, usher in a disquieting recital straight from the backwaters of the ‘Wicker Man’, it’s all very Tunng and hitherto turned on the racks with a deeply macabre and maddening hysteria fuelled blood lusting, quite chilling if you ask me. Talking of chilling whilst similarly deepening down the rabbit hole of psychosis, the Heartwood Institute’s ‘Corn Dolly’ comes ghosted in brooding waves of shadowy noir coiled in supernatural eerie which collude and coalesce to create a strangely alluring gateway to a secret and unearthly nether world. United Bible Studies continue the descent into disquiet, ‘from the last sheaf of the braes’ casting a spine tingling chill that’s scratched painfully in sorrow as were, a ghost waking drone spiritual grieved in futility and hopelessness. For their part, the Year in the Country folk step up to plate with the spirit fan-faring hollowed menace of ‘the night harvest’, this ‘un coming draped in low frequency howls and the unsettling groan of the land and nature colluding to forge a conspiratorial pact as they wake from slumber to patiently watch and plot. Depatterning hold with the tension and press of terror and portent, instead opting to forge a path on ‘the keeper’s dilemma’, that to these ears sounds like a enchanting spectral mirage of sorts whereupon the land of ‘the corn mother’ gives up her secrets and to softly and silently tell her story. Spell weaved enchantment dreamily draws the foolish near siren like with the approach of Widow’s Weeds’ haunted soul stealer ‘the corn mother’, a weary warning from the taken, tenderly tortured and dried in melancholia, this twilight messenger chimes and shivers to a dance of the eerie. Would I be right in saying, frequent flyers on these aural investigations, Sproatly Smith serve up the sparsely spectral folk mystic ‘caught by the coppice’, to the fore of which, electronic warbles and nature sounds congregate and craft a dislocated and cooing pastoral daydream which without warning or a by your leave, soon fractures and fries in a proggishly stoned way to emerge cut finitely in the likeness of Bevis Frond. Field Lines Cartographer closes this particular chapter, ‘procession at dusk’, a solemn tiding etched gravely with a twisted dark jubilance, a scarred and disfigured sinister symphony torn straight from nightmarish shadow lands.