The Voor’s Head Device (as Mr. Barrett describes it) is “A hood worn over the head to induce mild asphyxiation and hallucination. Take a plastic bag, preferrably (sic) opaque and black, and puncture with a needles (sic) many times, enough to create a steady but insufficient supply of air. Sew this bag into an outer bag, this one made of black cloth. Affix to neck with a belt.”
Its goal was to indoctrinate the wearer into the aegis of death and even among some of Voor’s more devout followers, the device was ill-received.
Mr. Barrett has used the device, however, and afterward attempted suicide. There is a recording of the experience and it forms the piano, screams and horror that punctuate the album’s opener, “The Haunting Presence.”
Born out of suicide and the specious history of a man named Robert Voor who, through his vulgar, cursed blood ties to a place of outcasts – witches and poor, grew a community in the New York wilderness dedicated to the experience of death. And not just any death. Not transcendence. Not Judeo-Christian hope nor neo-pagan “friendly” ghosts. The cult (I think we would be safe to call it that) developed around the notion of death as terminus, abyss. Despair manifest in the absence of light and continued until…well, forever.
A hallmark, perhaps rite of Voor’s followers was the use of a device.