A Journal Of The Dark Arts

Harsh Noise Reviews: Homeless Princess – The Gardens And Groves Amidst The Immensity; The Transmission of Lunacy and its Aftermath

Homeless Princess noise review



When asked to describe what having PTSD was like for the website, Daisies And Bruises’ author Erin Schulthies described it thus:

  • t’s never ever feeling safe. It’s never taking a full breath of air in your lungs. It’s the feeling of walking barefoot over glass, except the feeling is all over your body every time you leave your house.
  • It’s being afraid to close your eyes. The vulnerability you feel during the split second of blindness as you sneeze is terrifying.
  • It’s having your gut instincts scream at you to RUN every time someone looks at you.
  • It’s going shopping and tailoring your outing so that you are never in an aisle of a store with a man you don’t know. It’s avoiding taking a cab at all costs because you can’t be alone in a car with a stranger. It’s taking the stairs instead of stepping into an elevator, where you’d be trapped with no one to hear you scream.
  • It’s knowing in your bones that other human beings have the power to destroy you. That you can be victimized, no matter how hard you fight or cry or yell. That even someone you trust as a friend or as family can turn on you faster than a wolf when hunger hits.
  • It’s the taste of black licorice making you physically sick. It’s the smell of manure making you drift off in your head so that you can’t feel anything in your body. It’s seeing every man with a weathered face as your attacker – he’s back to kill you.
  • There are supposedly nice people out there, but you can’t see them. You never see them. Instead of real faces you see ghosts of your past haunting you with fresh eyes.
  • It’s being told that not everyone wants to hurt you, but you can’t stay grounded long enough to truly get to know anyone. It’s spending most of your time alone because you are terrified of other human beings, sometimes even your friends. You tell yourself it’s better that way, but loneliness still ravages you when you least expect it.
  • It’s feeling flawed, bad, marked, stained. You feel like you were born a target and that’s all you’ll ever be. Danger is all you know, it’s everywhere.
  • What does it feel like to have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder?
  • It feels like prison.
  • It feels like Hell.

The Gardens And Groves Amidst The Immensity; The Transmission of Lunacy and its Aftermath, by harsh noise artist Princess Haultaine III under their Homeless Princess guise, is comprised of one hefty (and heftily monikred) bleak noise exploration, “I’m a PTSD suffering piece of shit and I don’t deserve your help, yet here I am asking for it.” It’s a mammoth, byzantine 20-minute, 23-second sound poem of yowling static, scraping metal, shattered nerves, disembodied voices, drones, paranoia, and decay.

Princess Haultaine III is a resident of an in-patient PTSD clinic in Denton, TX., out of which their disturbingly honest clamour emanates, as well as their excellent Voidcastle blog. Haultaine III discusses their condition, and their treatment, amidst tons of excellent and interesting harsh noise and extreme music reviews and speculations. I have yet to make my way through all of Voidcastle, so i can’t speak to what the cause of PHIII’s PTSD may be (i seem to recall them being in the military, in some capacity), but taken together, with both words and sounds, the project is an interesting sonic exploration of what happens when a sensitive and artistic person gets exposed and forced to deal with things they shouldn’t.

Whether it’s due to abuse, or seeing extreme violence, or it’s just a lifetime of subtle microaggressions and increasing pressure and tension, many of us feel traumatized. It’s like having a ghost, living inside yr bones, pulling yr strings like a damned demented puppet, as Schulthies comments on. For a lot of us, especially the noise fringe out there, just staying fed and clothed is a total IF, and our livelihood could be yanked away at any second. I have been living at the edge of oblivion, the whole time i’ve been writing this blog, for instance.

Speaking to the origin and impetus behind The Gardens And Groves Amidst The Immensity, Princess Haultaine III says:

“Humanity is a perpetual let down; what can one expect from a virus? I make this fucking art and can’t even make $20 a year off of it. I literally have no income and I am currently in a residential treatment facility for veterans with PTSD, and after I leave here I have no home to go to. If you enjoy my sounds at all, please donate what you can.

This is dedicated to my true friends, and is in protest to this fucked up world.”

Although charity alone is never reason enough to support an artist or enjoy a work, Princess Haultaine III’s entreaty is a too-common cry for far too many experimental musicians out there. It’s a game of diminishing returns, with so many experimental albums hitting the world, each and every day. But Princess Haultaine III’s soundscapes stand alone, on their own, without a backstory. Their tones are lovingly rendered, with burning low end and high-frequencies that pierce but never become grating. Their longform sound sculptures have a sense of narrative to them, as well, like watching some bizarre, surreal arthouse horrorshow.

While it seems that PHIII is almost apologetic for “the transmission of lunacy and its aftermath,” this is a plague of madness that needs to be spread. Princess Haultaine III’s scraping, hissing, drilling cacophany gets inside yr body, inside yr cerebellum, inside yr skin, and makes you FEEL what it’s like to be someone else. PTSD makes you see the world in a distorted funhouse mirror, where every face is a potential enemy, when the bottom could drop at any second and the true, raw, animal violence of reality asserts itself. You are never safe; you are never at home. You can never rest.

Like almost everybody, i’ve been having a hard time, this week, as i’ve discovered Princess Haultaine III. There have been several nights where i’ve sat at a desk, shellshocked, staring out dark windows as insane post-industrial meltdowns blister my consciousness. Sometimes i wonder why i do it to myself, but it truly just comes up. Bleak, unrelenting hnw, in the dead of night – its natural habitat, when the dream factories are all dead, dormant, and un-dreaming.

If you want to see the continued exploration of abnormal psychology (pardon the phrase) and the depths of the human psyche and spirit, you’ll support Princess Haultaine III. And as many artists as you can find like them.

Princess Haultaine III
ig: @mainstreammediamail

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