Back in November of 2017 the post-punk band Reptile Tile released a single called “We Are Not A Cult”. The song featured The Current Earthly Embodiment of Mandek Penha. The track represented a rare moment in pop culture, much like Hendrix playing the Star Spangled Banner at Woodstock, when Dylan went Electric, or the moment Olivia Newton John spoke her first lines in Xanadu.
The coup achieved by Reptile Tile, in getting Mandek Penha to lend his vocal talent to this collaboration, was a masterstroke. A vortex opened, and a conduit was formed between the the world of pop art and the spiritual plain occupied by the Church of the Saerrean Alignment. If you’re confused, don’t be. Just think about those photos of The Beatles dressed in white, draped in marigold garlands, and hanging with the Maharishi. This was kind of like that, but with better dance moves and stuff.
Audiences in the northern hemisphere may be forgiven for their lack of awareness. Not many had heard of Mandek Penha before his appearance with Reptile Tile, and fewer still understood the core of his project – shared by a collection of shiny videos, and an EP from 2012. But suddenly, with the endorsement from a sensible band, questions were asked and answers were given. Well, one answer was given, and it was more of a rebuttal. “We Are Not A Cult” adequately addressed any concerns you may have had about signing over your wealth, and offering your mind, and dance moves to the leader. Relax, rejoice, and laugh if you feel so inclined.
Now, ahead of the release of Mandek Penha’s album popbollocks have secured the premiere of lead single, “A Village Story”. Incredible, but true.
It’s an instrumental piece, full of contrasting joys. A synthesized oom-pah band opens proceedings, but soon a jazz flute breaks in. A heavenly choir made up of entirely real-life children lends harmony. And would you look at that – we’re away.
As with every release from the cannon of Mandek Penha – the sense of unrealism is here with great depth. Building a complete vision one eye-opening video, or single at a time, Mandek Penha furthers his scope to bring a more fleshed-out experience. This song is no different. A microcosm of the whole, there is depth, reach, and beauty in the associations between what the artist brings, and what the audience expects. Somewhere in that unusualness is a truth too big to communicate. Praise be.
So, until the album release, let’s sit back and get all lathered-up in anticipation of receiving Mandek Penha’s full length. For now, the stunning pastoral scene of life in the Church of the Saerrean Alignment’s compound is an invitation to sign up and get down.
HURRY – LISTEN – MANDEK PENHA
HURRY – EXPERIENCE THE WORLD OF MANDEK PENHA