Henge want to save the world with cosmic dross, and they’re at The Joiners
Interviewing an alien who is more than a billion years old has to be a first for The Guide, but seeing as he comes with such an important message – here goes nothing...
Henge have come to Earth to spread their message of love and harmony.
And with their latest single Demilitarise they pay tribute to one of their favourite humans, Professor Stephen Hawking, by urging mankind to take his advice and colonise space.
The band have been spreading the word here on Earth via the music they call cosmic dross for the past four years. But the band’s roots go much further back.
We spoke with frontman, Zpor, who originally hails from the planet Agricular in Cosmos Redshift 7 ‘which is many, many, many light-years away,’ as he explains how the band came together over the course of a billion years or so. It is a lengthy story spanning galaxies, the sharing of ‘psychedelic plasma’ on the planet Xylanthia, ‘amphibious rhythms’, the death of life on Venus due to its inhabitants’ war-like nature, ‘the therapeutic effect of bass frequencies’, and finally making contact with a human called Grok via lucid dreaming and the astral realm.
‘He told us of the Earth’s plight. We were aware of planet Earth – we’d been a few times before – but it seemed urgent that we come back.
‘Grok was able to guide us to a safe landing on this very dangerous militarised planet that you have. And we met in a stone circle in the north of England. When we met for the first time, we became Henge.’ ‘As well as being a very lucid dreamer and a shamanic type, he is also a great player of the human instrument the synthesiser, which sounds intriguing to us as it sounds very similar to instruments we have created on other planets.’
The band call their wigged-out genre-splicing music cosmic dross. But as Zpor points out, while they are Earth’s ‘primary exponents’ of the form, they have not, and do not seek to perfect it.
‘Cosmic dross is a constantly mutating art form, evolving as any living thing does. The notion of a state of perfection which can be reached is a difficult notion to apply to art-forms, because it implies an end point – but cosmic dross is eternal.
‘What we have been doing is fine-tuning cosmic dross for human ears – these alien sounds, we are re-instrumentalising them. We’re trying to make it palatable for the human ears, but not to compromise the effectiveness of the sound-waves’ power.’
And so far Zpor is heartened by our response to their music. They released their debut album Attention Earth! last year to critical acclaim, and they won Best Live Act at the 2018 Independent Festival Awards.
‘We have had some encouraging results to our experiments. We have been transmitting cosmic dross to gatherings of humans and during these gatherings we have noted the effects on the nervous systems of the human participants.
‘We have seen a proliferation of joy, we have seen an increase in instances of outwards expressions of ecstasy, and an increase in incidents of positive tactile interactions – the stomping off feet, the clapping of hands, the raising of voices. We take these as positive signs that our experiment is having some kind of effect.’
He is optimistic too that we can avoid the fate of Venusians – it’s not too late to change our ways.
‘We merely encourage humans to reach their potential. Maybe you can go to the moon and make a base, then move from there to Mars and make a colony, but I don’t think that will be your final destination as humans.
‘Hopefully, eventually you will leave the solar system, and this will be how you ensure the survival of your race.’
The Joiners, Southampton
Friday, April 5