October 28, 2020
Rob Miller on the Esoteric and the New Tau Cross Album
(Living Esoteric Culture Series Interview 5)
Rob Miller is a swordsmith working on the Isle of Skye. With his brother Stig on guitar, Rob was the bassist and frontman of the seminal heavy band Amebix (1979-2011), whose work helped to make it okay for punks to like really heavy riffs, while making a lot of metalheads into lovers of punk whether they liked it or not. Following Amebix’s second breakup, Rob put out two albums with the equally-heavy band Tau Cross. Both bands’ catalogues drink deeply from the well of western esoteric traditions.
We discuss Rob’s musical trajectory, engagement with western esotericism (including arguable outliers like UFOlogy), and the third Tau Cross album, Messengers of Deception, re-recorded with a new lineup following the breakup of the previous iteration of the band.
Works Cited in this Interview:
The mysterious ‘occult magazine’ whose name neither of us could remember is:
- Richard Cavendish, editor. Man, Myth, and Magic. An Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Supernatural. Purnell, for BPC Publishing, London, 1970-1972.
It did indeed blow minds back in the 1970’s, and has probably been a major influence on defining ‘the occult’ in the English-speaking world in sunsequent decades.
The Museum of Witchcraft and Magic in Boscastle is still going strong (though currently closed on account of the pandemic).
- Aleister Crowley. The Book of the Law: Technically Called Liber al vel legis sub figura CCXX. Thelema Publications, Kings Beach, CA, 1973.
- C. G. Jung. Jung on Alchemy. Routledge, London, 1995.
- John A. Keel. The Eighth Tower. Saturday Review Press, New York, NY, 1975.
- John Lamb Lash. Not in His Image: Gnostic Vision, Sacred Ecology, and the Future of Belief. Chelsea Green, White River Junction, VT, c. 2006.
- John Michell. The View Over Atlantis. Sago Press, London, 1969.
- Diana and Michael Preston. A Pirate of Exquisite Mind. Explorer, Naturalist, and Buccaneer: The Life of William Dampier. Walker and Company, New York, NY, 2004.
- Trevor Ravenscroft. The Spear of Destiny: The Occult Power behind the Spear which Pierced the Side of Christ. Spearman (really!), London, 1972.
- Erich von Däniken. Chariots of the Gods? Putnam, 1968.
- Francis A. Yates. The Art of Memory. Penguin, 1966.
- Idem. Giordano Bruno and the Hermetic Tradition. University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1964.
- Idem. The Occult Philosophy in the Elizabethan Age. Routledge Kegan Paul, London, 1979.
John Dee, Edward Kelly, Enochian, Alchemy, UFO’s, Kabbalah, Metal!, Magick, Jack Parsons, Gematria, Aleister Crowley