Abbath, “Calm in Ire of Hurricane,” and the Mystery of the Partially-Spun Dervish

  • Axl Rosenberg

Abbath, “Calm in Ire of Hurricane,” and the Mystery of the Partially-Spun Dervish

First, let’s not bury the lede: Abbath has released a new song, “Calm in Ire of Hurricane” (via Kerrang!), from his forthcoming album, Oustrider. It’s pretty great. It captures a uniquely black metal mix of triumphalism and malevolence, grandiosity and raw intimacy. And, of course, it has the always-romantic Abbath croak.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s do the part where I ponder some weird shit that probably doesn’t need pondering, shall we?

This what caught my attention about the song’s lyrics: the phrase “dervishes spun whole.” A dervish, in case you don’t know, is a member of a Sufi religious order, and they’re largely known for their spinning dances (hence the phrase “whirling dervish”).

So I guess my question is this: how can a dervish ever be only partially spun? They can’t, can they? A partial spin isn’t really a spin at all. So the lyric “dervishes spun whole” is redundant. They’re just dervishes, spun.

Folks, you can’t say I didn’t warn you that this section of the blog was gonna ponder some weird shit that probably doesn’t need pondering. I put the song up top so you could skip this nonsense and everything. It’s your own fault for following me this far down the rabbit hole.

But since you’ve been too stupid to click away yet, here’s another silly question for you: how do dervishes play into Oustrider‘s allegedly Jungian lyrical themes? You may recall that said themes resulted in King ov Hell (ex-Gorgoroth) quitting Abbath’s solo band, because he felt that Jung’s “connection to Christian mysticism is incompatible with the image of the band.” But dervishes are a uniquely Muslim categorization. Granted, Sufism is a form of Islamic mysticism. Still, Islamic mysticism isn’t the same thing as Christian mysticism. Maybe King ov Hell was confused? But I’ve never heard of Jung having any link to Islam. Maybe the lyrics weren’t inspired by Jung? Surely, continuing to think about this is a great use of our time, right?

Oustrider comes out July 5.

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