Halloween has just passed and us Astral Noize writers spent it daring to delve back into the realms of Bandcamp! All dressed up in costumes, drinking way too much, unaware of the terrors that lurk beyond the darkness. As night fell, we all sat around the Bandcampfire exchanging spooky tales of new music releases we’ve been checking out on a whim on the Bandcamp platform by artists we’ve never even heard of before. What terrors have we unleashed from the crypt?

Astral Noize

October’s Bandcamp Breakout:
Kluvim – Lo Yikre

Drawn in by not being able to decipher what type of “metal” this would be by looking at the artwork (and not immediately recognising the language of the band name and title), we were greeted by dark hardcore with a tinge of grind by way of Isreal, and boy was it a pleasant surprise! Thick and noisy production brings the most out of the seven songs on offer, bringing to mind Full Of Hell and False Light amongst hints of black metal in some fleeting sinewy tremolo riffs, plus a couple of sludgier breakdowns reminiscent of contemporary heavyweights Jesus Piece. This is a short but sweet release that really doesn’t fuck about and only serves to aid its point, Kluvim are here to blast. A very accomplished first release that warranted several repeated listens, one to watch indeed.

Lo Yikre is out now, self-released on Bandcamp.

Words: Red Sismey

Astral Noize

The Thing! – Rythmically Polite

Halloween-themed releases are, as a rule, dreadful. Albums and artists based around the horror genre are also, as a rule, dreadful. But The Thing! (originating from Antwerp’s underrated experimental/electronic scene) are here to break that mould. Rythmically Polite is a subtly menacing journey through dark ambience. From the cavernous X-Files pads of the title-track and its sequel ‘Rythmically Polite 2n’ (which as a warning, finishes five minutes earlier than it should), through the Sleep Research Facility-esque crunch of ‘Polite But Odd’ and onto the noisy, arpeggiated chaos of ‘Halloween 2018 Dance Party-Just Odd’, the release consistently spooks and surprises in equal measure. Whether you’re playing S.T.A.L.K.E.R. drinking games (VI DAMKE) or attending a basement S&M party, Rythmically Polite is a must have this Hallows Eve.

Rythmically Polite is out now, self-released on Bandcamp.

Words: Rich Lowe

Astral Noize

Cutworm – Swallow

Since it’s the Halloween season, we were naturally drawn to the witch house area of Bandcamp. The spooky thing is, we didn’t even realise that witch house was still a thing, but apparently it is! The short-lived subgenre pioneered by the likes of Salem and Crystal Castles sort of died out and arguably merged into the current trap phenomenon. Cutworm (from Denver, Colorado) still go by this subgenre tag, with the three tracks on this EP, ‘Duodenum’, ‘Jejunum’ and ‘Ileum’ strangely being named after sections of the human intestines. Cutworm utilise excellent production, with pounding, trappy beats, ghostly whispered vocals and gloomy synths. The highlight is middle track ‘Jejunum’ which has a pretty and haunting melodic synth lead that wouldn’t feel out of place on a Boards Of Canada record.

Swallow is out now, self-released on Bandcamp.

Words: Chris “Frenchie” French

Astral Noize

Simara – Black Lung Fetish (Ft. Yasha)

If you ever thought “I really like Aphex Twin, but I wish he had the guts and career suicide-motivation to make something even more jarringly unpleasant”, then Black Lung Fetish will tick all the boxes. Running frantically at a gabber pace, with percussive elements to samples teetering on unbearable, there’s absolutely no give – this will either be everything you’ve been looking for, or one of the worst records you’ve ever heard.

Black Lung Fetish (Ft. Yasha) is out now, self-released on Bandcamp.

Words: Bill Waters

Astral Noize

Pheretrum – Rehearsal Demo

Remember the ’80s? Oh those halcyon days, when black, death, and thrash metal were intersectional, and the closest you got to WeTransfer was a network of basement-dwelling fanatics across the world trading tapes with each other for fun. If there’s one thing to note about \m/ Uruguayan death-thrashing maniacs (THRASH ‘TIL DEATH) \m/ Pheretrum‘s Rehearsal Demo, it’s that people used to pay good money for releases that actually sounded like this, like as full releases, so one can comfortably listen without romanticising the ’80s too heavily. However, everything about this release oozes all things great about rough and ready mid death-thrash of the period.

From the rackety drum sound evoking Morbid Visions-era Sepultura, the simplistic hardcore-punk-meets-speed-metal-in-hell riffing (gloriously lacking any FX or post-production), to the vocals lifted straight lifted straight from an ’89 rehearsal tape (not to mention the rough-as fuck Morgoth, Obituary and Massacre covers) Pheretrum’s rehearsal demo lives, breeds and breathes disgusting death-thrashing madness.

Rehearsal Demo is out now, self-released on Bandcamp.

Words: Rich Lowe

Astral Noize#

Kalu – Get Well Soon

Instrumentally, Get Well Soon is your standard electronic release, with miniature phrases, trills and various patches, but the vocal delivery teeters on a fine line that some will find soothing and others eerie – although it’s unarguably compelling either way. Unintimidated by electronic music’s current maximalism, often you’ll be greeted by a small selection of effects and tracks – ‘The Loosing Side’ opens with a single, unaccompanied melody – and the openness of the mix does the record wonders. A case of less is more.

Get Well Soon is out now on Stiropor.

Words: Bill Waters

Astral Noize#

Overscape – Sunset

Halloween wouldn’t be complete without cruising through the dark ambient zone, a genre often described as being like a score to a horror film. London’s Overscape was listed as so, but there was nothing particularly dark about this three track EP. Regardless, this is the kind of ambient we like. So incredibly sparse and minimalist that it only just barely tickles ones subconscious. Haunting, ghostly, synth chords wander lost in the night. As the Bandcampfire dies out and turns into embers, we shut our eyes and lay down on the ground, lost in a dream. A loud rustle in the bushes awakes us from our slumber as menacing footsteps creep louder and louder towards us. Our throats quiver manically. Everything turns to red…

Sunset is out now, self-released on Bandcamp

Words: Chris “Frenchie” French

Astral Noize#

Illustration: Blair Shaw (@blair_draws_stuff)

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