I like to think that I’m at least a bit cultured. I enjoy a sip of tea from time to time and do have a college degree. Let’s see, I’ve read several of William Shakespeare’s works and once shelled out top dollar to import a David Lynch Blu-ray box set all the way from Germany. I am a man of some taste and refinement, so I figured I was ready to take in Lingua Ignota‘s Caligula (Profound Lore).
I noticed song titles ‘Fucking Deathdealer’ and ‘I am the Beast’ written in all caps so I wasn’t exactly sure of what I was heading towards. Then ‘Faithful Friend Servant of Christ’ opens the proceedings with subdued orchestration and ghostly chants and now my brain is firing, and I need to know to what lies at the center of Caligula. Headphones are firmly in place as I prepared dinner and for almost ten minutes ‘Do You Doubt Me Traitor’ takes the center stage. I stir my chicken and dice vegetables as ‘Butcher of the World’ wraps up and I think I’ve figured it out.
Do you remember that scene in The Big Lebowski in which The Dude watches his landlord’s one-man show while Donny looks on in bewilderment? Yeah, that’s Caligula for you.
It all just comes across as very self-important, but it quickly peters out in an exercise of style over substance. There are interesting ideas scattered throughout ‘Butcher of the World’ and the live drumming that comes in late on ‘May Failure Be Your Noose’ is a godsend but they never link together to build interesting or memorable songs. It doesn’t help that every track is veiled by lack of dynamics and come with all the vibrancy of the color brown. Kristin Hayter is a legitimate vocalist, but I’m in no rush to revisit almost anything on Caligula.
I’m sure there are publications that are ready to laud Caligula as one of the releases of the year. Maybe I’m just an uncultured pig. Cool, I’m okay with that.
6 / 10