Sunday, September 22, 2019

Bandcamp Picks 181: Darsombra, A-Sun Amissa, Aidan Baker, Aarktica

DoC friends Darsombra are back with their fifth full-length opus of "trans-apocalyptic galaxy rock". Self-released by the band themselves, Transmission consists of a single 40-minute track - building chants, bells, and synths around Brian Danislowski's shape-shifting riffs. Far from the monotony that typifies your typical drone metal, the piece encompasses many emotions, ultimately ending on one that few drone albums do: Uplifting. [$5]

The (mostly) solo project of Gizeh Records owner Richard Knox, A-Sun Amissa has spent the majority of its recording history creating atmospheric ambient music. But For Burdened and Bright Light contains its heaviest moments yet, using guitars and electronic drums in a way that recalls the drone metal of Nadja and Jesu. Not sure how Knox feels about his work being described as "metal", but these two songs are as oppressive as ambient/experimental gets. [£5]

Speaking of Nadja, Aidan Baker has two new simultaneous releases out to join his extensive discography. The Forever Tapes delves into his downtempo interests, layering shimmering guitars over driving bass lines and trip hop beats; meanwhile, its companion release strips out the rhythm section to re-imagine the same songs as ambient noise. Two discs for a double dose of this trippin'. [€5.99/€5.99]

Aarktica is the brainchild of LA-based Jon DeRosa, who has resurrected the project for the first time in 10 years. [Anyone curious about DeRosa's metal influences should investigate his exceedingly serious Danzig cover.] Occasionally borrowing the twangy solemnity of Earth, the mostly-instrumental  Mareación combines DeRosa's guitar over spacey new age synths and sound effects, leading to an immersive album that straddles the line between neo-folk and ambient music. Inspired by "plant medicine", it's probably best enjoyed with the same. [$8.99]