Enlarge Photo by Kristie Krause

Idol Listening: John Frum’s Solution for Ego Dissolution


If you haven’t already treated yourself to A Stirring in the Noos, the debut album from John Frum, well, you’re missing out. The project, which features current and former members of The Dillinger Escape Plan, The Faceless and Knife the Glitter, is every bit as forward-thinking as its pedigree would suggest, and every bit as insane as you’d expect from a group named after a figure associated with cargo cults.

So we thought it was only appropriate that the band should make us a playlist with the theme “Solution for Ego Dissolution.” To call the mix “eclectic” would be to vastly undersell it.

Says the band of the playlist:

“We chose artists that we find evocative, transcendent, perverse, powerful, authentically deep and perhaps even magical. We chose tracks which mirrored the more complicated thoughts and feelings at the darker end of the spectrum in ways other disciplines often miscarry: Fear, isolation, desolation, extinction, rejection, confusion, awe and disbelief – these are just a few of the themes explored on this playlist; a tiny sip at the source of our songwriting.”

Check out the playlist below! Below that, you can also enjoy a brief interview with the band about some of their selections. And don’t forget to check out A Stirring in the Noos, out now on Relapse! You can buy it here.

People might be surprised to find electronic acts like Meathook Seed and The Haxan Cloak on here, given your pedigree. What lessons from electronic music have you been able to apply to John Frum?

We feel Meathook Seed and Haxan Cloak, along with some of the other artists we chose, have a unique way of creating their own context with their music. There is often an abstruse mood or a feeling described by their sounds that act like an old familiar smell, triggering more complex emotions and revealing a deeper sensibility of the environment the music is exploring. Electronic music often feels more corporeal and thoughtful. Because electronic music isn’t limited by the timbres of typical band instrumentation, it seems more capable of redefining space and drawing the listener out of their surroundings. This awareness is something we’ve been conscious of throughout our songwriting and recording process.

Have you ever actually made it all the way through “Long Life” in its entirety?

Yes, but we’ve only made it through half of “Lta Zor” at press time.

When/how did you first come into contact with the music of Charles Manson?

The person or persons who first introduced this to us is of no great public interest and will remain unnamed, but we can say this song has been on our radar for over a decade and we are simply acknowledging its clairvoyant themes despite its infamous messenger.

A friend says to you, “I’ve actually never seen The Wicker Man” (or, worse still, have only seen the shitty 2006 remake with Nicolas Cage, not the original 1973 classic). How would you reply?


Did Moondog’s “I Came Into This World Alone” influence your lyric writing at all? If so, how?

Moondog is our sole lyrical influence on every song. No further comment.

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