CHURCH UNIVERSAL AND TRIUMPHANT INC. (THE) FEAT. ELIZABETH CLARE PROPHET
THE SOUNDS OF AMERICAN DOOMSDAY CULTS (VOL. 14)
Original Issue: 1990 Faithways International (No Number)
Margot-meter: 5 moons / 5
A document of the spellbinding chants, call-and-response decrees, hypnotic invocations and prayers performed against the demon rock'n'roll by the ultra-conservative new age church universal and triumphant, led by charismatic, gun-hoarding nutjob elizabeth clare prophet--who is believed by her followers to be divinely inspired by a host of ascended masters, including merlin the magician, hercules, william shakespeare, jesus christ, gautama buddha, the archangel michael, and other emo legends. humorous for its damnation of seemingly harmless rock stars like billy joel, which explains why negativland and other experimentalists would sample it, this mesmerizing, all-vocal performance should fascinate listeners interested in la monte young's drones, kurt schwitters' "ursonate," or the stringent choral works of ligeti, penderecki and scelsi.
from Aquarius Records:
It's hard to believe this is real. In fact, it took a lot to convince Andee, who was sure this was some sort of elaborate prank. But it's one of those things that just makes you proud / embarassed to be an American. Elizabeth Clare Prophet purchased 24,000 acres in Paradise Valley, Montana and started The Church Universal and Triumphant, a creepy new age doomsday cult in which Prophet channeled spirits such as Jesus, Buddha, K-17, Morya, Quan Yin, Afra, Hercules, Mighty Victory, Astrea, Shiva, Pope John XXIII, and more. (Sort of like J.Z. Knight of Yelm, Washington and her channelling of "Ramtha" except even more scary.) Prophet and her husband stockpiled arms, built giant bomb shelters, and coerced their devotees to purchase their own survival equipment at exorbitant prices. Throughout its existence various members of CUT were indicted for kidnapping, lost custody of the children who belonged to the church and were investigated for tax exempt status and firearms violations. In 1995 former member Joeseph Pietrangelo Jr wrote a book condemning CUT entitled "Lambs to Slaughter: My Fourteen Years with Elizabeth Clare Prophet and Church Universal Triumphant".
But the thing that really puts CUT on the map for us is their way of conducting their religious services. The tapes of these services have been floating around for years already. Those of you familiar with Negativland's 1989 album "Escape From Noise" will already be familiar with an excerpt of one of the tracks on this album, as they used it for the track "Michael Jackson", and Steve Fisk has been using these tapes for years as well. This record features live recordings of Clare Prophet 'speaking' out against the evils of rock music. She sounds perfectly normal as she introduces her 'psalms' or 'songs' or 'speeches' or whatever they are. But when she gets going, it's amazing. And so goddamn insane sounding. Her rapid fire high pitched testifying sounds a bit like an impossible mix of an auctioneer, a yodeller, the guy who sings the directions at a square dance, Neil Hamburger huffing helium and variations of baseball's 'hey batter batter' chant only faster. It's like that sound you make when you sort of hum/breathe out and move your finger up and down between your lips making a sort of 'bebubebubebubebubebubebubebubebu' sound. It's one of the most amazing things we've ever heard! A must for all cult fanatics, new age withdrawal victims, seekers of the truly strange, and fans of extended, trance-like vocal techniques. Ever so highly recommended! We'd almost have made this cd edition our Record of the Week if we weren't certain that it would probably bug the heck out of more people than (like us) would love it!!