Coil – “How To Destroy Angels” (1984)

On this record, hopefully the first of a series, we have tried to produce sound which has a real, practical and beneficial power in this modern Era.  Specifically, it is intended as an accumulator of male sexual energy.


I posted the other day about finding a comp with a Chris & Cosey track on it, which struck me as fortuitous and more than a bit coincidental given that I’m currently readying Cosey Fanni Tutti’s new autobiography Art Sex Music.  What I failed to realize at the time is that the other record I picked up that same day from the Silver Platters new arrival bin also had a connection to Tutti – Coil’s 1984 single-sided 12″ How To Destroy Angels.  And that connection was the band Throbbing Gristle, in which Chris, Cosey, and Coil’s Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson all performed together.

Although we make neither claims nor rules for its use, we do suggest that for maximum potency it should only be played in circumstances that are exclusively male and/or onanistic in nature.  What these are is entirely up to you.

How To Destroy Angels is often described as industrial, and there is a bit of a traditional industrial component to the composition, specifically the use of non-traditional methods of generating sound.  Yes, there are electronics involved.  But there are also metallic objects being banged together as well as the occasional sword fight (yes, I said sword fight).  The overall structure is that of a religious-like drone, a constant undercurrent of deep and sustained gong sounds that make the metallic percussion (and sword fighting) a bit jarring due to their unexpectedness after having been lulled into a bit of a stupor by the drone-ish qualities.

The B side of this record is a bit of a conundrum, with at least five different versions reported on Discogs.  Mine is the completely grooveless, which I believe was Coil’s original intent.  Other versions, however, have grooves and different kinds of sounds on that side, at least one of which is described as musical while the others as just noise and/or tones.

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