Odonian Drifts – “Promethean Lag (Fractured Tale 1)”


A uniquely powerful track with atmospheric spoken-word pursuits, “Promethean Lag (Fractured Tale 1)” comes via Odonian Drifts, the solo project of Notts-based artist Iain Rowley. The poet and musician is also one-fifth of the act Spirits in the Pillar, whose post-punk-inclined EP released last October.

Blaring electronic textures, both twinkling and murkily enveloping, complement spoken-word vocals that utilize English folklore as context within “the question of how ethical responsibility and hospitality towards others might abide amid the wreckage of austerity 2.0,” — referencing priest and philosopher Ivan Illich’s writings that the “sickening effect of programmed environments show that people in them become indolent, impotent, narcissistic and apolitical.”

Rowley’s initial delivery follows a swell of synths, feeling somewhat ominous as he references the 12th century tale The Green Children of Woolpit — “two kids crawl out,” with a thumping rhythmic addition alongside twinkling keys. The tale of the drowned town of Semerwater, and its Atlantis-like mystique, is referenced as well — seeming to observe the treatment of “the other,” in a societal context, which sends chills as the unsettling yet captivating “great frontier,” vocal effect. “Promethean Lag (Fractured Tale 1)” is an observational, poetic tour-de-force with atmospheric and thematic invigoration.

The release represents the lead track from the upcoming album Earwitness on Trial.

This and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of January 2023’ Spotify playlist.

We discovered this release via MusoSoup. The submitter accepted our content-based offer, which included financial compensation for our time writing, editing, and publishing this article.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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