Three Triangles, Two Crescent Moons & A Goddess: Notes from a Crobot Encounter

I.

Sitting cross-legged in a tent, somewhere remote and ancient, nearest beacon Van Diemen Land’s second established outpost.

Outside, ghost gums shiver in the heat of a still, suffocating night, a canopy of encroaching stygian menace.

Outside, things move and growl in long dry grass, advancing.

Outside, branches snap and the undergrowth hisses.

A luminous sliver of new moon provides dim illumination; the generator coughed and expired days ago, just after the rest of the crew disappeared. The ute has had its guts pulled out, strewn and melted in the embers of dead fire.

Nowhere, no way to run. No way out. Nowhere to hide.

I toke on something noxious, alien bush weed wrapped in soft bark, exhaling a bitter draught of second hand poison briefly thrown into relief against the opaque membrane of the enclosure. I grind my teeth a bit more and detach another brew from the penultimate six pack, hands trembling, uncertain if DTs or just abject terror.

Warily rebooting the phone, anxious of notoriously stingy battery; greeted by a cruel flicker of reception and then the glowering crimson of a dead device.

Alone.

Alone.

The gums outside sigh. The crescent moon pulses sick black light and a filament of sepulchral gossamer fire splits the roof of the tent. Reality violently expanding and contracting to make room for…something.

The tent’s thin walls are eclipsed by a slithering mass of red bellied black snakes, plunging all into ink. There’s a rending crack, like continents shifting, all consuming.

Ragnarök.

The Crobot is arrived.

Of four aspects yet singular, hooved and batwinged; from certain angles the chupacabra, the cosmic wizard, technophage, a spaceborne killer and necromancer. A decadent mandala of depraved intergalactic fantasia roils in the shadows. Cloaked in azure flame, the shapeshifter arranges himself into Padmasana directly opposite me. Roiling psychedelic headfuck, a Grand Grimoire of the mutable impossible locked in a supernatural carapace.

We sit. Regard one another.

Outside: nothing.

Me: ‘Beer?’

A callous pause. The Crobot’s eyes, deep set cataclysms, narrow. It shifts its weight cagily: a wing twitches and a black snake tongue flickers at the corner of its leering snout.

‘Hell yes, boy! Thought you’d never ask!’

I snap a beer from its cardboard noose. We enter an ancient shamanic state. The ritual begins.

II.

‘Right. We’re, uh, here to talk about your… favourite horror movies, correct?’

The ‘Brandon’ aspect manifests, the Skin-walker, full of throat:

‘I was raised on the gore! The very first movie I ever saw in the theatres was Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers and I’ll never forget the moment where that pregnant chick gets impaled with the pitchfork in the beginning.

The Legend of the Spaceborne Killer is an adaptation of the pandemonium that would surround the first encounter with an alien race and is really my spin on Godzilla.

In The Necromancer the line ‘the killed, get up and kill’ comes from one of my favorite movies George A. Romero’s Dawn of the Dead where the newscaster says that line on live-broadcast. Also in that tune, I speak of the deadites, which were what the undead were called specifically in Sam Raimi’s cult classic Evil Dead.

These songs are most definitely an extension of my strict diet of horror films growing up and a love for different mythologies of varied cultures.

The legends of the chupacabra and the alterations of the stories between the different cultures always intrigued me.

Wizards is the tale of an epic battle between two wizards, one who represents the natural spirit world and the other representing the new age of technology.”

The ‘Bishop’ manifests, the Wizard coalescing in a matrix of chiming tritones and shimmering arcane signifiers.

‘When I started doing the art for the album, I wanted to have a symbol represent it. That’s when I came up with the three triangles and two crescent moons that you see on the cover. It is our version of the Wiccan goddess symbol. Inside the shapes I drew things that symbolised some of the songs on the album, which later I elaborated on and did a piece for each song. Stylistically I looked at artists like Alphonse Mucha for inspiration for an old occult looking feel.’

The dual headed chupacabra, ‘The Figueroa’, rumbles ‘Favourite horror flick? Aliens — though it’s more action than its predecessor, this movie scared the crap out of me. I first saw it on LaserDisc (a DVD the size of a 12″ vinyl for you young ‘uns) when I was young — probably too young (thanks Dad!). Afterwards, I constantly pictured aliens crawling out of any dark recess or crevice, ready to tear me apart.

Aussie horror flicks? I’ve actually seen more than I was aware of. Saw, Snowtown, Ghost Ship, and House of Wax are all movies I’ve seen and had no idea they were Australian productions. Snowtown definitely left an impression on me, as it is based on a true story.’

The Crobot then speaks as one, a booming quadrophonic totality, as the beast details its vision of celluloid infamy, a libidinous cosmic B-flick symphony, Terry Gilliam via Ed Wood and Tinto Brass:

‘We’d do an excursion to outer space directed by Stanley Kubrick where we get really high and visit the NASA space station during a launch, accidentally boarding the shuttle set for launch to the International Space Station. While traveling through space, the shuttle is ransacked and space pirates take control. That’s when the party starts! They bring aboard their shenanigans, including their alien prostitutes, our one true weakness! That leads to us all contracting a sexually transmitted mutation from the same three-titted alien hooker.

Each of our individual encounters with this space slut would unfold while we all start mutating and continue to search for the cure. We all end up mistakenly traveling back in time to before the shuttle launch ever happened and waking up in our beds, but to our dismay, we have no penises. Sam Elliott would play Bishop, Ben Affleck would play the role of Paul, Tommy Chong would play [Brandon], and Samuel L. Jackson would portray Jake!’

With that, it is on its feet and painting its sigil in the air, reknitting existence with primordial eldritch conjurations:

Three triangles. Two crescent moons. The Goddess.

Bowing deeply (or was it sardonically?), the Crobot shotguns another beer, belches with gusto and leaps, filthy cloven hooves first, into the humming portal.

I faintly hear booming Sabbath (Vol. IV) and what sounds like a gnarly spring break keg party in full flight as reality convulses, inverts and I black out, debauched cosmic mandala tattooed after images in bloodshot eyes.
III.

Coming to. Morning.

A horse fly buzzes, trapped between canopy and mesh, devouring the odd hapless mosquito; birds call in the bright still of dawn. Gums shush in light breeze.

Beside me, the detritus of a lot of beers; outside, I can hear the first morning rumblings of my fellow campers.

Sitting up, still bleary at best, one headphone still in, the other dangling, I absentmindedly thumb the phone on.

Fully charged.

Tapping out my own sigil, handset warm to the touch, I flick to the top of the ‘list titled Something Supernatural, thumb Legend of the Spaceborne Killer, plug in the other headphone and hit play.

Image © Garth Jones, 2014.

Originally published at www.hopscotchfriday.com.