There’s an ancient Japanese legend in which a horde of demons, ghosts and other terrifying ghouls descend upon the sleeping villages once a year. Known as Hyakki Yagyō, or the “Night Parade of One Hundred Demons,” one version of the tale states that anyone who witnesses this otherworldly procession will die instantly—or be carried off by the creatures of the night. As a result, the villagers hide in their homes, lest they become victims of these supernatural Invaders.
Such is the inspiration for the latest album from Earthless. “My son is really into mythical creatures and old folk stories about monsters and ghosts,” bassist Mike Eginton explains. “We came across the ‘Night Parade of One Hundred Demons’ in a book of traditional Japanese ghost stories. I like the idea of people hiding and being able to hear the madness but not see it. It’s the fear of the unknown.”
Whereas 2018’s Black Heaven featured shorter songs and vocals from guitarist Isaiah Mitchell on much of the album—an unprecedented move for the San Diego power trio—their latest is a return to the epic instrumentals Earthless made their unmistakable name on. Night Parade Of One Hundred Demons is comprised of two monster songs—the 41-minute, two-part title track and the 20-minute “Death To The Red Sun.”
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