Below you will find an interview with musician, guitarist and magician, Jerome Alexandre. Jerome is well known in the realm of London’s post-punk scene as a member of the band Deadcuts. Sharing the stage with legendary musicians and enchanting his way across the ocean are but a few of the fascinating dynamics of Jerome’s story of which he details below.
Q: What do you consider your greatest magical achievement?
A: That’s a tough call as there’s a few I could list, but If push comes to shove I’d say crossing seas without a passport whilst remaining invisible to the customs officials prying eyes (haha!) who were searching our tour vehicle – on the way to Paris we’d not been stopped or searched but on the way back to the UK to catch our ferry the french customs pulled us over, my method was to clutch the Algiz Rune for protection and hide under a sofa (This was advised to me by a local witch), the Main customs Official who was shining a light in my face could not see me despite being inches from my face, he looked mean with an inspector Closeau moustache and a tense expression that suggested should he find us we were going to be spared no mercy, this all took part some years back when my group Deadcuts were supporting Peter Doherty at a venue for two nights at the infamous Mariqounerie venue.
Another one I have to mention took part at an Occult festival which Deadcuts had performed and a friend of mine came up with an idea to attach people’s wishes that night to a firework/rocket and blast it into the sky, I scribbled in red “It is my will to make a song with Flatbush Zombies” – Flatbush Zombies are one of my favourite Hip Hop artists and I really wanted to collaborate with them the second I heard them and knew that they were coming to do a concert here in London a few weeks later, for some reason the rocket was meant to be fired that night off of London Bridge but wasn’t – unbeknownst to me it would be fired a few weeks later in an area known as Limehouse, And what was interesting was I watched the footage of the rocket being fired about a monthlater to find that the exact night it was fired in Limehouse was the night we recorded a track with Erick Arc Elliot of Flatbush Zombies in a studio in Limehouse! That then led to Deadcuts co-writing”Aries” with Flatbush Zombies the following week for Marvel’s Black Panther animation series and Me and Aaron (Deadcuts Bassist) would play on Erick’s solo album too. So yeah those two are definitely confirmation for me that a concentration of willpower works within the structure of magic.
Q: Who are your personal heroes, those who most inspired you on your own journey?
A: If I’m honest there are no heroes for me, That’s said It’s impossible not to be in awe of people who have gone the extra mile as it were and lived life on their own terms, when I was younger all I could see were the mysterious and legendary mythos that surrounded people like Crowley or John Dee, yet for all the interesting stories about Crowley towards the end of his life he carried with him a great degree of self doubt, treated a lot of people very badly and I suspect was fairly unhappy. This is why joining certain sects never appealed to me as I realised that the majority of followers can’t match their philosophers charisma, charm, humour or even zest for adventure. I recently watched a lot of Thelemites name and shame each other in public for having different opinions on a political scale, I mean isn’t that against the principle of free will? Which is exactly what Thelema is meant to be about right? I can’t imagine Jack Parson’s having these kind of conniptions.
Boyd Rice taught me a lot about balance within dualism, his essays on Abraxas, Cross of Lorraine and the vessel of god are highly alchemical in nature and his music mirrors his spirituality – we’ve had endless chats about the esoteric and I feel his take on it all a lot more rewarding than most. Austin Osman spare blended his art and writing to mirror his subconscious, his phrase “Atavistic Ressurgence” continues to fascinate me which talks about how ones DNA or past lives are etched into the human mind and how we come to use this sacred knowledge with each incarnation, equally fascinating are how he broke down language and words as invocations and how these words could be made into sigils to manifest ones own desire. Freya Aswynn is a great authority on the Runes, she’s like a medium listening to her voice one feels as if she’s a conduit who takes you out of the modern world and connects you to the ancient and timeless. Douglas P of Death in June also has that same alchemy within his music – as does The Underachievers , Ab Soul, Fka Twigs and Bobby Beausoliel. I love Kenneth Angers films too they activate the same parts of your mind that one connects when conducting a ceremony or ritual. Nikola Tesla really should be in here too – I mean this guy was a modern Prometheus if ever there was one.
Q: What importance, if any, do you place on full visual manifestation of a spirit during evocation?
A: I’ve never evoked a spirit per se, Yet during ritual I do always feel a binding to something altogether primordial not unlike a static charge.. one can smell the earth… the eternal perhaps? That said I know certain places to go at night if I really want to reach out to spirits – but I haven’t really done so much of that of late as it can often lead to complications – once you knock on that door it’s always the spirit that decides when and if they want to close it or not.
Q: What was your first “oh fuck, this shit is real” moment in your personal magical practice?
A: There was an incident when I was a teenager that comes to mind and it’s not something I’m overly proud of – I was in one of those very intense relationships – and was seeing this girl who had a coterie of ex’s who refused to let go, One in particular just kept on turning up at hers when I wasn’t there and was getting to be a nuisance. The girl I was with claimed that they were still good friends but in retrospect I think she just liked the attention, So in reality I knew that she’d probably never ask this guy to stop – and if that was now I’d just walk but you know how it is when your young, my ego was being tested and after several times of sitting down and trying to reason with her and tell her that I wasn’t happy and being more than clear I considered cursing this guy, So there I was pondering wether to go through with the vengeful rite when my girlfriend rang me to say the guy had been admitted to the hospital after swallowing copious amounts of sleeping pills. If I’m honest I felt relief when he came too in the hospital and survived. A couple months later I bumped into the guy and he had been having consistent nightmares about being stalked by entities – Thats when it hit home that even vengeful thoughts have consequence and it made me realise one should never really go there unless it’s absolutely necessary.
Q: What is one piece of magical tech you could not live without?
A: I would say the mind – it’s the most important tool because it’s your will and total belief that ultimately connects with the unseen, So one could say the magician’s mind (An Adaptor) works themselves to a static charge then sends that energy (like a plug) that then links to the eternal (the socket). I could draw symbols, an altar, an athame etc. if I needed to in my mind and not even need them near me – I think it’s important who’s holding the equipment rather than the equipment itself.
Q: At what age did you start practicing magic and why?
A: The actual practice began when I was as young as 12, but my fascination began way before – I remember my grandma and I watching old horror movies and her showing me how to cast the runes, also my grandfather had many books on the esoteric ranging from “Holy Blood, Holy Grail, and a book on myths and legends from the Baltic regions as he was Polish. Yet it was not enough for me to merely read on these subjects – I wanted direct communion and to experience the secrets and mysteries for myself so one led on to the other so to speak.
Q: What is your advice to the young aspiring magician just getting started today?
A: I’d tell them to meditate and to read as much as they can, That knowledge of balance is important there is no extreme light or dark but that everything runs on dualistic principles….. and there is no smoke without fire. Its imperative to live life to the full and if your not prepared to take risks then more often than not you’ll never be able to be a successful magician.
Q: What are your current magical endeavors?
A: At some point I realised that writing and music are very much magical endeavours, The original meaning behind magic is “The art” and I believe that wether your painting or whatever artistic medium you work within that you are literally creating magic.
Q: How do you respond to Christian evangelists knocking on your door at dinner time?
A: Depends on how good the food is! and if they have manners or not, for instance I truly believe that genuine christians are concerned about people and their spiritual afterlife, but there are also People who claim to be Christian and do nothing but help themselves. I’ve met both on opposite sides of the fence and think there are good points to their religion but can’t dismiss the total massacre that went on during the crusades.When you consider that many Cathars were burnt as heretics simply because they believed you could contact god directly without going to church it certainly makes your mind tick as to why it was so important for Christians to expel other faiths and have its own holocaust – let’s not forget the terrible slaughter of Pagans and pagan history and culture eradicated. In reality the bible (particularly the Old Testament) is very Occult themed, you’ve got sacrifice – the drinking of blood and the dead rising! You also have the Gospel of Thomas which has a very alchemical fuse to it. That line were we are all born In gods image made me realise that wether God is a consciousness or a deity one cannot deny humanity is made of light and dark – therefore the closest mind state or God I can think of is Abraxas.
Q: What effect and focus do you think magic should have upon politics and world events?
A: I would hope that Magic is kept separate from Politics and world events, for the very reason that politics seems to be the sole divider of humanity at the moment, if one tries to debate politics in a public place people that were initially having a nice calm conversation suddenly completely lose their minds and act like hysterical whining banshees. Politics by and large are abstractions – They are always cutting out the selfish plight of man, The word Revolution sounds so redundant especially now! People can’t be bothered to try to rise up particularly in the west because they’re transfixed by stuff such as Meaningless television programmes, The internet or other pacifiers. Not unlike Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha etc. one puts their faith in these politicians to such a degree that they actually believe that these politicians will completely change their lives for the better! It’s a total lack and denial of responsibility. Some people dream of a glorious utopia in which poverty is suddenly eradicated and the whole world will embrace and everyone will respect and love each other… That just is never going to happen. Humanity has espoused all these ideals for centuries and still fights, steals, rapes, Loots, pillages and kills. For some reason were condemned to make the same mistakes over and over. The thing I always liked about Magic is that it transcends politics – Yes a few Political parties have been mystically inclined but it’s never really ended well for them!