photos by Veronika Reinert
Stream “Virtue” from HARMONIC CROSS HERE. Treble is currently hosting an exclusive premiere of “Virtue,” one of the most harrowing movements found on the impending The Grand Paradise Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by HARMONIC CROSS. Ending a seven-year stretch between albums, The Grand Paradise is the second full-length album and first original motion picture soundtrack from HARMONIC CROSS, the dark ambient alter ego of the Richmond, Virginia-based artist collective that also records and performs in their punk/hardcore form as Bleach Everything and their indie rock incarnation Highness. The Grand Paradise is HARMONIC CROSS’s follow-up to the 2015-released It Is Finished., a conceptual album about the unsolved mystery of “The Somerton Man,” originally on vinyl through Magic Bullet Records and since digitally reissued via Dark Operative. While functioning as an intentionally cohesive standalone album, The Grand Paradise in its entirety also serves as the original motion picture soundtrack for a film by the same, set for release through Lil’ Baker Films in 2023. While once again unifying the collective’s original creatives in Brent Eyestone, Graham Scala, and Ryan Parrish, it also marks the first formal recording with their Bleach Everything bandmate of ten years, Kelly Posadas. In direct sonic opposition to Bleach Everything’s short, fast, and loud credo, HARMONIC CROSS creates significantly longer cinematic compositions that often creep slowly and dynamically within an entirely different headspace and listening experience. Recorded, mixed, and sound designed by Brent Eyestone at Tracking in San Diego in the Summer of 2021, mastered by Bryan Walthall at Stereoimage, and completed with cover art by Eyestone, The Grand Paradise clocks in at just over forty minutes across its eight songs. As the album was written specifically for the film The Grand Paradise, its cohesiveness and narrative through lines permeate from beginning to end. Without spoiling the film, the soundtrack follows a protagonist’s journey through a traditional three-act structure of prophecy, madness, and triumph across a visual palette of liminal subscapes. The purpose of releasing the album in advance of the film is to allow for early listeners to “see” their own narratives before presenting the band and filmmaker’s own visual representation of what’s “happening” within the songs. HARMONIC CROSS’s Brent Eyestone reveals, “As this is an original motion picture soundtrack, each song corresponds with a specific scene. Without spoiling it, ‘Virtue’ comes at a point in The Grand Paradise where things against the will and desires of our protagonist begin to portend after a reflective period of joy and nostalgia. An external, nefarious figure enters the picture from a distance. Since it will be some months before the film premieres, we're encouraging listeners to close their eyes and conjure their own narrative initially. And once the film is out, it should be noted that the images that accompany all of the songs are by no means the definitive take on what was intended, but rather one example of a collaborative effort between our band and our friend Nath Milburn.” Writes Treble, “…the album features hypnotic drone soundscapes and eerie atmospheric pieces. Today, the group has released ‘Virtue,’ a gorgeously weightless drone piece that traces the edges of melody, carrying a reverb-laden sonic drift...” Tune in to Treble to hear HARMONIC CROSS’s The Grand Paradise movement “Virtue” now at THIS LOCATION. The Grand Paradise Original Motion Picture Soundtrack will be released through Dark Operative on CD and all digital platforms on October 26th. A vinyl edition may follow in 2023 in conjunction with the film’s release. Find the digital preorders at Bandcamp HERE and watch for updates on physical product to post shortly. Watch for further samples of the record and intel on the film to be dispatched over the weeks ahead. In addition to The Grand Paradise, HARMONIC CROSS will appear on the second installment of Dark Operative’s It Came From The Abyss compilation series in 2023 and is set to score a 2024 horror film, also for Lil’ Baker Films.