Come Holy Spirit is a Pittsburgh trio whose members weave together disparate musical styles to create their own brand of chaotic, earth-worshipping folk punk. They recently released a split album with Milwaukee world (or, rather, otherworld) music collective Gnarrenschiff.
The album’s opening track, “Panacea,” is a rework of a song that was included on Come Holy Spirit’s 2016 debut, Weather. The recording quality is a bit clearer this time around, but the song still contains its original iteration’s primal energy despite the added layer of gloss. “Panacea” sees Come Holy Spirit deconstruct rock music itself, using your standard guitar+bass+drums setup in a way that evokes images of pagan solstice rituals rather than sweaty dive bars. There’s nary a snare drum hit in sight; the song pulses with an essential rhythm so insistent that traditional rock drumming is rendered obsolete until the final note fades. Hypnotic hi-hats, steady bass, and a whirling, staccato guitar motif eventually build to a tempestuous climax during which vocalist Gina Favano roars, “O Life!” while cymbals and power chords thunder behind her. Favano’s lyrics draw on the majesty and mystery of the natural world, making reference to hoary heads of lichen, giant cosmic turtles, and eaters of jellyfish. “Panacea” sounds like an invocation chant for a long-forgotten nature goddess buried deep within the earth; let her arise and groove to the elemental cadence of Come Holy Spirit.