The monastery church was burnt down at one point, rebuilt, used as a horse barracks by Cromwell, then extended to make our current church of Ireland. The round tower and a few high crosses are on the grounds, but there are also a bunch of graves dating back as far as the sixteenth century. Some are in really good nick, others are cracked, shattered, overgrown with creepers, and burst by searching roots.
At the front of the graveyard the headstones are in the best condition, lined up neatly and staring inscrutably out from the hill of Kells and south towards Navan and beyond. But they are the least interesting ones. At the back of the graveyard, where cedars stand stiff and dark, there are shattered stones with inscriptions in archaic English, weird little verses, curling words that run to the very edges of huge slabs, and, in some cases, frightening black gaps under monuments. How deep do they go? I saw a fleshy white tail disappear into one and was reminded of the time our art class visited another cemetry in the town, near the school, which is even older, and someone found a skull. That's right, a skull.
MP3: Demdike Stare-Caged in Stammheim
You know how Boards of Canada showed touches of evil on their second LP Geogaddi? Well, Demdike stare have taken that whiff of the occult and run a hundred dark miles with it, leaving cloven footprints and slaughtered babies in their wake. Named after the mad staring eyeballs of a witch from the notorious Pendle Coven called Granny Demdike, the Manchester duo create music that is hard to define - a gibbering and squeaking monster that squats in a rank darkness cannibilising shreds of dub techno and ethnic music. Like their pal Shackleton, they acquaint themselves with ideas of death as a state of being - one of their albums is an exploration of the trance-like voyage from life described in the Tibetan Book of the Death. Check them out if you dare.
NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW NSFW