Category: Frozen In Time: Weekly News (Page 1 of 9)

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – April 2024

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


Ugasanie – Cold World of Eternity

 

I’m a big fan of Ugasanie‘s music, but with their latest release – on the ever awesome Cryo Chamber label – they have taken things to another level. Cold World of Eternity is an incredible album of dark ambient / drone, with a polar ambient soundscape guaranteed to knock your socks off. I’ve had this on repeat play since I first heard it several weeks ago, and after 30+ plays I am still absolutely loving it! Very highly recommended!


Adam Wiltzie – Eleven Fugues For Sodium Pentothal

 

Now this is very cool – an album of dark ambient / drone, with classical instruments brought to the forefront, and a melancholic undertone. The end result is an album that provides an emotional listening experience – one in which the listener is drawn into introspection and valuation of their life and the world around them. Definitely one of those albums for listening to alone, late at night, with a glass of wine. Gorgeous!


Harvestman – Triptych: Part One

 

The latest release from HARVESTMAN (the psych/folk/ambient project of Neurosis’ Steve Von Till) is the first in a three-album series titled Triptych, and has been released to coincide with April 23rd’s Pink Moon (the next two parts of the series will be released to coincide with July 21st’s Buck Moon and October 17th’s Hunter Moon, respectively). This is an album of dark ambient / drone, with other elements added to the mix – including folk, psychedelia, and sludge. The resulting album is wonderful multi-layered experience and a must have for fans of dark ambient that does something different. Awesome!


Abul Mogard & Rafael Anton Irisarri – Impossibly distant, impossibly close

 

This impressive release of dark ambient / experimental  electronica sees Abul Mogard and Rafael Anton Irisarri working together to create something very special indeed. This is a beautiful music, full of unfolding melodies and gradually evolving tracks that introduce multi-layered soundscapes that are quite simply breath-taking. If you like your dark ambient with an electronic, synth-based edge, then this well worth checking out. Stunning!


Noctilucant – Deadlier Meat

 

Deadlier Meat, the latest release from Noctilucant is a re-recording of their classic 2015 album, Dead Meat with additional re-recordings of other Noctilucant obscurities. Even if you never heard the original album, this is well worth checking out because it is more than a remix album – full of haunting dark ambient tracks with industrial and post-industrial undertones, this is an album of apocalyptic soundscapes – subtle and melancholic in places, aggressive and disturbing in others. Wonderful!


IO – Saturn Devouring His Son

 

Inspired by Francisco Goya‘s Black Paintings, the latest release from IO is this deliciously dark track that perfectly evokes Goya’s own psychological struggles and anxieties. With an otherworldly vibe, and strange haunting field recordings and echoes, this a track that manages to be both reassuring, yet wildly disturbing – offering a vague sense of familiarity, while simultaneously making us feel out of our depth and alone in the dark. Incredible stuff!


Various Artists – Anthology Of Contemporary Music From Far East

 

The latest release in the impressive “Sound Mapping project” series from the Unexplained Sounds Group label is this collection of Far Eastern dark ambient / drone / experimental music, featuring tracks from China, Japan, Indonesia, Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Hong Kong, South Korea, and Nepal. The music here varies in genre and style, but each and every track is fantastic and has something to offer the listener, so whatever your tastes, this album deserves your attention. Stunning stuff!


Scott Lawlor – Screaming at the Dark

 

Scott Lawlor‘s second release on the awesome Slithering Black Records label is this wonderful album of depressive dark ambient. This is an album of bleak, despairing music, that provides the listener with an audio experience that is the equivalent of finding yourself dragged into purgatory. And I mean that in a good way – yes, this beautifully haunting music is dark and suffocating – but listening to it is an incredibly rewarding experience. Highly recommended!


Sam – Organic Faith

 

The latest release from Sam is Organic Faith – a fantastic 3 track album of acoustic guitar based dark ambient / drone. With bluesy undertones, this is another quality release from this talented musician who has created their own distinctive ‘guitar dark ambient’ sound and continues to develop that with each every album. This is one of those albums that sticks in your mind when it’s finished playing, and you find yourself drawn to it again and again. Beautiful.


Archaic – Into The Void

 

The latest release on the Zero K label is Into The Void by Archaic (the electronic music project of Jelle Groen and Pieter Hooghiem). The release notes say that “Discovering the complexities of modular synthesis and navigating the labyrinthine pathways of signal flow, they created intricate eerie sonic landscapes” which summarises this brilliant 43 minute track perfectly. Minimalistic, electronic, and glitch filled, this is provides a delightful sonic journey into the realms of wires and circuits. Amazing!


Scott Lawlor – The Road of Peril

 

The Road of Peril by Scott Lawlor is an impressive release by this talented musician. The music here is a wonderful mixture of dark ambient, drone, and ritual ambient, with religious and spiritual undertones. This is perfect for listening to on a rainy day, as you consider yourself and the choices you’ve made, and the choices that still lie ahead of you. Every time I listen to this album I lose myself deep within the music. Simply mesmerising.


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – March 2024

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


Jettenbach – a voicenote to the hierophant

 

I’m a huge fan of Dragon & Jettenbach, so I was delighted when I heard that Jettenbach was releasing a new solo EP! a voicenote to the hierophant is a deliciously dark and ominous dark ambient album with seriously  industrial / harsh electronic undertones. Subtle and melancholic in places, aggressive and angry in others, this is one of those albums where each and every listen is an absolute joy. Very highly recommended for fans of dark ambient with an industrial / electronic edge!


PATASONUS – TENEBRIS

 

The latest release from London based Patasonus is TENEBRIS, an album of experimental soundscapes that skilfully combines elements of drone, dark ambient, and electronica. This is yet another impressive album from this talented musician, with each track offering something different, while also retaining the overall feel and vibe of the album. I’ve had this on repeat play since I first heard this, and it gets better with each and every listen. Awesome stuff!


Nerthus – Silent Monuments

 

The latest release from the ever amazing Eighth Tower Records is this wonderful album of post-industrial dark ambient. Inspired by a passion for abandoned industrial facilities photography, this album explores abandoned industrial complexes, with each track perfectly capturing the sense of desolation, isolation, crumbling decay, and rusting machinery. This is one of those albums to lose yourself in as you lie back on the sofa with the lights out. Absolutely breath-taking.


IO – Frontispiece​,​”What is Man​!​”

 

The latest track from sound and visual artist IO is Frontispiece​,​“What is Man​!​” . Inspired by the works of the English poet, painter and typographer, William Blake, this is a haunting dark ambient / dark industrial piece with evolving drones and an underlying sense of melancholy that perfectly captures the human experience with all of its vices, follies, virtues and strengths. Another impressive track from a musician who never fails to deliver!


David Lee Myers, Sonologyst, Lars Bröndum – Unus et Trinus

 

Now this is very cool – an album featuring 3 incredibly talented musicians! With individual offerings from each artist, as well as the wonderful collaborative track, Unus (created from exchanges of samples, audio experiments, music segments), this is an album that cannot fail to impress. The music here is dark ambient, with an experimental edge that take things to the next level. If you’re looking for something that pushes the boundaries of the genre, while retaining the essence of it, this is an album that you simply have to check out. Fantastic!


Hiemal – Alone in Temporary Places

 

Regular readers will know that I’m  a huge fan of Hiemal, and that I’m always excited when he releases something new. As with previous albums, Alone in Temporary Places is a feast of slowly evolving drone filled soundscapes – with each track providing a mediative listening experience that is second to none. If you haven’t listened to Hiemal before (and if not, why not?!), this is a great place to start – so do yourself a massive favour and check this out now!


RDKPL – noitavoNC

 

Inner Demons Records is one of my favourite labels, consistently releasing high quality experimental and noise music, so I’m always thrilled when one of their new releases comes to my attention. And noitavoNC, by Czech noisemaker RDKPL, is another awesome release – a 4 track album of noisy drone with elements of post-industrial added to the mix, with each and every listen offering something new. highly recommended for fans of the noisier side of things. Noise-tastic!


Orquesta Drone Tropical – Goblins

 

Goblins is the latest album from Colombian drone / dark ambient / experimental musicians Orquesta Drone Tropical. This is one of the most creative and rewarding albums I’ve listened to in quite a while – yes, in places it’s not an easy listen, but that is most definitely part of its charm. With some incredible samples and field recordings (the screeching cat is just one marvellous example!) blended skilfully into the music, this will have you admiring the inventiveness of the audio journey unfolding as you listen. Wonderful!


Michael D. Tidwell – The Lonely Scapes of a Darkened Soul

 

Dark Odyssey Records is a Canadian dark ambient label that is already making quite a name for itself with a trilogy of impressive releases. First up is The Lonely Scapes of a Darkened Soul by Michael D. Tidwell – an EP of cinematic dark ambient inspired by movies such as Dune, The Fifth Element, Elysium, and Lord of the Rings. The music here is multi-layered with real depth to it, taking the listener on an audio journey that is as rewarding as it is entertaining. Highly recommended for fans of cinematic dark ambient and movie soundtracks!


Dark Awake – ARCHEMOROS

 

Next up from Dark Odyssey Records is this ritualistic dark ambient release from Greek musician Dark Awake. With neoclassic influences, and subtle industrial undertones, this is an unnerving album full of brooding atmosphere and a sense of otherworldly dread. I’ve had this on repeat play for several weeks now and I’m still loving it as much as I did the first time I heard it. If you’re a fan of eerie dark ambient with ritual ambient elements, then this is an absolute must have!


Chaigidel – Entrails of the Earth

 

Finally from Dark Odyssey Records is Entrails of the Earth by Italian musician Chaigidel – an album of breath-taking industrial ambient that does an incredible job of combining the esoteric with industrial to create something very special indeed. This is another one of those albums that offers an amazing listening experience, both challenging and rewarding the listener in equal measure. With multi-layered depths this is an album that will offer something new each time you play it. Simply awesome!


Bonzaii – Escalating Quiet

 

I’ve been a huge fan of Bonzaii for a number of years now, finding each and every release an absolute pleasure to listen to and lose myself in. Escalating Quiet is no different, with a wonderfully subtle melancholic feel to it, and featuring slowly evolving drones that are skilfully blended with field recordings and samples. This is music that is perfect for a spot of meditation or self-reflection, or for simply losing yourself in as you lie back and close your eyes. Beautiful.


Tineidae & Sole Massif – Remnants of War

 

Oh wow! The Cryo Chamber label has done it again – releasing this incredible cyberpunk dark ambient album from Tineidae & Sole Massif. With soaring synths, thumping bass, and a deliciously deep dark ambient vibe, this is simply stunning. This is the perfect soundtrack to any cyberpunk sci-fi novels, movies or movies, and I have lost myself to this music again and again since this was released. This is an essential purchase for anyone who likes cinematic dark ambient with a sci-fi edge. Mind-blowing!


Spacecraft – Drifting in Peace

 

Mumbai based musician, Spacecraft, creates the most wonderfully chilled out space ambient / drone music – evoking a sense of calm and galactic wonder. Strictly speaking, this is more ambient than dark ambient, but fans of the genre will find this an incredibly rewarding album, due to its impressive soundscapes and multi-layered textures. Definitely an album worth checking out for those looking for something a little more melodic and contemplative. Gorgeous!


Capricorni Pneumatici – Al​-​Azif

 

Al-Azif is the second album from Capricorni Pneumatici. Originally released on tape in 1987, this has now been released on the Eighth Tower Records label to make it available to a wider audience. This is an album of deep, dark industrial ambient with an incredibly unique sound resulting from the fact that the album was recorded underground in location containing a number of large cement tanks. Fans of industrial / post-industrial ambient should definitely check out this classic album now that it has been re-issued. Wonderful stuff!


Vyormouth – Between Planes

 

Zero K continues to release dark ambient / experimental albums of the highest quality, and Between Planes by Vyormouth is no different – providing an “auditory journey through the liminal spaces of both the physical and psychic realms”. With 3 tracks, each an hour in length, this album is perfect for losing yourself in as the slow pulsing drones, and monotonous and desolate frequencies take us far away from our surroundings and ourselves. Absolutely remarkable!


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – February 2024

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


Atrium Carceri & Kammarheit – Apparatus

 

Cryo Chamber continues to be the genre leading label for atmospheric soundscape dark ambient, and Apparatus, the latest release from Atrium Carceri & Kammarheit, is yet another stunning piece of audio excellence. With analogue tape reels, haunting electronics, pulsating basslines and massive reverbs, this is an incredible listening experience best listened to on headphones in a darkened room. If you like cinematic dark ambient then this is an absolute must have. Seriously impressive stuff!


Dronny Darko & ProtoU – Acoustics of Shadows

 

Also on the Cryo Chamber label is Acoustics of Shadows, the new release from Dronny Darko & ProtoU – a gorgeous drone ambient album full of layered textures and otherworldly soundscapes. Striking the balance perfectly between a sense of calm and feelings of disquiet, this is a warm and dreamy album that offers something different each and every time you listen to it. I’ve had this on repeat play since I first heard it, and it just keeps getting better and better. Simply wonderful!


System Exile – New Innsmouth

 

I’m a huge fan of The Shadow Over Innsmouth (the 1931 horror novella by American author H.P. Lovecraft) and for quite a while now I’ve been looking for a dark ambient album that captures the mood of the book. Well, my search is over – New Innsmouth by System Exile is the perfect soundtrack to the novel. With an underlying sense of menace, and haunting drones paired with subtly added field recordings, this is a truly impressive album. On the strength of this album, I will also be checking out other releases from System Exile, and I suggest you do the same. Awesome!


The Deep Bleed – Machines That Search for God

 

I’m a huge fan of Inner Demons Records (IDR), who describe themselves as “a transparent, artist-owned, liberal / left-wing, d.i.y., experimental music and noise label” – with each and every one of their releases offering something new and exciting to explore. The latest to grab my attention is Machines That Search for God by The Deep Bleed – a 2 track EP of industrial-tinged experimental drone and pulsing noise-scapes that is captivating from start to finish. Highly recommended for those who like their albums with an attitude and edge!


Akoustik Timbre Frekuency – Namu Myoho Renge Kyo

 

I’ve been a big fan of Akoustik Timbre Frekuency for quite a while now, so I was thrilled when I learned he had another release on the way! Namu Myoho Renge Kyo is an album of shamanic ritual dark ambient, providing an incredible soundtrack for meditation, reflection, and consideration. As usual with releases on the Sombre Soniks label, the production quality is of the highest order, and this is one of those albums to lose yourself too as you lie back, and contemplate your path to enlightenment. Stunning!


Lazharus – Scorn Zone

 

Now this is very cool! An album of dark ambient / drone / doom, by experimental metal duo Lazharus on which they experiment with electronic sounds, drum machines and synthesizers to create something very special indeed! The 2 tracks from this album have been stuck in my head since I first heard them, and I cannot wait to see what Lazharus do next – because this is seriously good stuff that will appeal to those looking for something that isn’t afraid to try something new, while retaining a coherent sound and mood. Wonderful!


IO – The Unicorn at the Fountain

 

Brazilian sound and visual artist IO continues to release albums of the highest quality – their music encompassing dark ambient, dark industrial drones, and other cinematic sound elements to create deep and textured ethereal soundscapes. Inspired by the series of seven tapestries known as “The Hunt of the Unicorn” or the “Unicorn Tapestries“, this is another exceptional album featuring gorgeous 5 tracks of dark ambient with goth-like undertones. Beautiful!


Noise Hangover – The End of Everything

 

With a name like Noise Hangover, you know what to expect from their latest release The End of Everything. The music here is aggressive and harsh, with discordant drone sounds and machine like glitches skilfully combined together to create an audio experience like no other. This is far from easy listening, but that’s the point – this is music designed to grab you by the throat right from the off and not let go. It’s refreshing and powerful stuff, and a definite must have for fans of the noisier side of the genre!


Richard Bégin – Lavrador

 

New from the ever awesome Reverse Alignment label is Lavrador by Richard Bégin – an album inspired by the polar and subarctic expanse of Labrador, a continental region in eastern Canada. Each track on this remarkable album “seeks to convey the essence of an ecology simultaneously fragile, merciless, and sublime” – combining drones, synths, and field recordings to create deep and textured music that is quite simply breath-taking. This is is one of those albums that is stunning from start to finish. Very highly recommended for those who like a sense of solitude and introspection in their music. Magnificent!


Various Artists – Witchcraft And Black Magic In The United States

 

Developed from a personal interest in American witchcraft, this latest release on the Eighth Tower Records label sees Rafaele Pezzella bring together a range of talented musicians together to create an album of deliciously dark ambient, drone and experimental electronic music designed to transport listeners into the captivating realms inspired by the witchcraft and black magic in the United States. With each and every track offering something special, this is an album well worth checking out if you are looking to discover some new talented musicians within the the genre. Gorgeous!


Fabio Keiner – Battle Hymn

 

Another release on the Inner Demons Records label, Battle Hymn is Fabio Keiner‘s rendition of the same named American patriotic song written by abolitionist writer Julia Ward Howe during the American Civil War. These 3 tracks are haunting, experimental pieces, with each offering something a little different, but fitting together perfectly to provide a cohesive listening experience. This is moody, dark and unnerving music, with undertones of introspection and melancholy. Very highly recommended.


The Black Monolith – End And Beginning Are Dreams

 

End And Beginning Are Dreams – the latest album from Greek dark ambient / drone musician The Black Monolith – is “an immersive musical ritual inspired by Thelema and the esoteric realms of Enochian magic“. This music here is dark and brooding, with a real sense of the otherworldly – invoking primal energies and the spirits of the void. This is a must have for fans of ritual dark ambient and music with an eerie or haunting feel to them. Simply stunning!


Monovoth – Pleroma Mortem Est

 

Monovoth‘s latest release is an album of wonderful drone / funeral doom – combining elements of the dark ambient and metal genres to produce something truly unique. Yes, this isn’t pure dark ambient, but this is gorgeously dark music that has skilfully created elements of drone and dark ambient contained within it – and the resulting audio journey this album creates is one that will most definitely appeal to those who enjoy dark and brooding music, regardless of the genre. On the basis of this album, I will certainly be checking out the other releases from this Argentinian, one-man instrumental doom / drone metal project – you should too!


P.U.M.A. – Red Winter

 

P.U.M.A. is a project of sound artist Luca Valisi with contributions from Monica Calanni Rindina, and here they explore various types of “musique concrete” and drone. Utilising synths, field recordings, echoing voices, sequencing, and a large degree of audio processing, the resulting album contains elements of dark ambient, drone, and electro-noise. This is quite simply breath-taking, with each play of the album providing an incredible listening experience of the highest order. One for fans of haunting, ethereal music with an electronic edge. Fantastic stuff!


The Tapes – A Touch of Despair

 

Oh wow. A Touch of Despair was recorded in 1986, on a standard 2-track cassette recorder, using a 4-channel Fostex mixer (the infamous “echo unit”), a Korg MS-20, and toy instruments. The album has now been remastered and re-released, and is well worth checking out – the music may be almost 40 years old, but it sounds as fresh and exciting as anything being released today, with it’s analogue tones and strange other-worldliness creating a haunting listening experience that is deep and multi-layered and dream-like in nature. Absolutely stunning!


secret places of the lion – Hex

 

Hex, the latest release from secret places of the lion, is an album of experimental guitar based drone / ambient, that combines elements of hedonism, the occult, and psychedelia to produce an album that manages to sound both familiar, and completely new and original at the same time. Strictly speaking, this isn’t dark ambient, but there are definitive dark ambient and drone influences at play here, and for those who are willing to try something new, this album offers a very rewarding listening experience that will stay with you long after the album has finished. Very highly recommended!


Ceremonial Abyss – Betrayal

 

The new album from Ceremonial Abyss is another exceptional release of dark, minimal, electronica. The description states that “It’s a love story that slits its own throat, but it’s not a story at all. It’s your life. Your heart beats as a reminder of the beating you’ve taken…” That does a wonderful job of telling you what to expect from this album – music that is poignant, melancholic, and tragic in nature, with a heartfelt tone and mood. This is one of those albums that will touch you and stay with you long after you’ve finished playing it. Beautiful.


VVAA – Rituals from Ancient Europe

 

This 8 track compilation of ritual dark ambient is an incredibly impressive debut album on the Ominous Sounds label, featuring talented musicians from countries such as Germany, Belgium, Spain, Poland, United Kingdom, Scotland, Malta and Portugal. Each contributed track has something special and different to offer, and yet the album hangs together as a whole – testament to the great work of Hiemis who curated the album. Ominous Sounds is definitely a label to keep an eye on – I can’t wait to see what they release next!


Scott Lawlor – in Brief Agonies of Disillusionment

 

As regular readers will know, I’m a huge fan of the music of Scott Lawlor – each and every one of his albums is always of the highest quality, and it’s clear that Scott is very passionate about what he does. His latest release, in Brief Agonies of Disillusionment, is an incredible 3 hours and 20 minutes long (!) and is a wonderful piece of atmospheric space ambient / dark ambient / drone. The is an album that I’ve found perfect for both meditating to, and for drifting off to sleep at the end of a long hard day. Simply gorgeous.


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – December 2023

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


Sebby Kowal – Wonders

 

The latest release from the ever awesome Decaying Spheres label, is this album of incredible drone based soundscapes from Polish producer Sebby Kowal. There is a emotional thread running through the heart of each and every track here, and that – combined with the otherworldly field recordings and sound effects – provides the listener with an audio experience of differing moods that range from melancholy and despair, through to hope and a sense of rebirth. Simply breath-taking.


Ceremonial Abyss – Equinox

 

The new album from Ceremonial Abyss is a wonderful post-industrial / experimental / dark ambient release with 2 distinct sides that compliment each other perfectly. Side 1 has a gorgeous dream-like vibe to it, creating an almost mediative state in the listener. Side 2, in contrast, has a harsher edge to it, but still retains an underlying hypnotic sound that continues from where side 1 left off. This is remarkable stuff – and on the basis of this, I will definitely be checking out more releases from Ceremonial Abyss!


Spanned Canyons – Snowload EP

 

Back in March, I reviewed the debut album from Spanned Canyons, saying “Looping synths and organ performances are melded skillfully with electronic glitches and field recordings. The end result is like something out of a hybrid horror-tech hallucination – guaranteed to entertain you and give you nightmares at the same time…” Their latest release, the Snowload EP, is just as inventive and just as impressive – featuring 5 tracks of ambient / jazz / post-rock / experimental music. With a remix of 2 tracks from the debut album, a brand new 3-song suite, and a very cool cover of “Race for the Prize” by The Flaming Lips, this is an EP that I’ve had on repeat play since I first heard it. Highly recommended for those who like something a little different.


Facetoucher – Mutations

 

Facetoucher combines improvised noises with vocals, computer drums, and long feedback manipulations to create otherworldly music that manages to be both soothing and disturbing in equal measure. The tracks on Mutations range from subtly evolving eerie drones, to in your face full on industrial, glitch-filled sonic assaults – leaving the listener bewildered and delighted at the sheer scope and emotive drain of it all. In places, this is a challenging listen, but ultimately a very rewarding one. Absolutely wonderful.


The Washing Planck – Integrale Sui Cammini

 

The Washing Planck is a musical project by Matteo Mariano and Domenico Diano, that “…utilizes a hybrid system of sound creation, combining analog and digital synths, structured algorithms, and magnetic tapes to create series of generative textures that lead to different paths based on the same principles…” The end result is 2 tracks that share the same inherent underlying DNA, but that each sound unique and offer something different. The music here is minimalistic, with subtle field recordings added to the undercurrent of unfolding drones, perfect for losing yourself to. Gorgeous.


IO – The Creation

 

The Creation from IO is the latest release in a series of releases inspired by the 51 ‘The Dance of Death’ woodcuts by German artist Hans Holbein The Younger that were developed between 1522 and 1526. This is beautifully done dark ambient with haunting echoes and sounds skilfully combined with evolving drones to create music that is dripping with a real sense of menace. This track, and the rest of the ‘The Dance of Death’ series, is a must-have for fans of dark ambient. Stunning.


Francisco Meirino – Francisco Meirino “A Perpetual Host”

 

A Perpetual Host is Francisco Meirino’s fourth full-length, solo studio album on the Misanthropic Agenda label, and is described as “A deep dive into personal loss and the banalities of life and art, A Perpetual Host captures the raw, solitary, and often acerbic extremes that drive creation.” It’s a fitting description, because the music here is focused on ‘sonic failures’ (such as electrostatic noise) and utilises field recordings to create music that is designed to challenge. This is one of those albums where each and every listen delivers something new and rewards multiple plays. Highly recommended for fans of the experimental / electronic side of the genre!


jim haynes – inauspicious

 

The latest release on the brilliant The Helen Scarsdale Agency label is this 2 track album from Jim Hayes, and is described as “… two twenty minute chunks of controlled noise that follow an internal logic that snakes from brooding power drones, spectral radio transmission, and an aktionist demolition cast upon metal, glass, and unfortunate wooden objects…”. Which gives you a great idea of what to expect – music that is as much industrial / noise as it is dark ambient, with rough edges, overlapping noisescapes, and an aggressive subtone that grabs the listener by the throat from the off. Seriously impressive stuff!


Phiorio – The Perpetual Self Doubt

 

Phiorio is best known for his stripped back techno style, but recently he has ventured more into the experimental and dark ambient territories, resulting in some very special music. The Perpetual Self Doubt is the perfect example of this – with eerie soundscapes combining elements of dark ambient with the repeated loops and rhythms of techno, along with field records and glitch effects. The end result is quite simply stunning, and I found myself lost in its depths each and every time I played it. Wonderful!


Bill Seaman / Tim Diagram / Stephen Spera – The World Was Turning Before

 

The World Was Turning Before sees Bill Seaman, Tim Diagram and Stephen Spera working together to create an album of delicate beauty and flowing musical collages. This is an album with hidden depths, that draws you deep inside of it as you let the music slowly unfold. With elements of dark ambient, drone, glitch, and electronica, the music here is timeless, multi-layered and multi-textured. Every time I’ve played this album I’ve discovered something new and wonderful, and I’ve found myself drawn back to its minimal tonal gestures again and again. Beautiful.


Neon Noodle – Nostalgism

 

I’ve been a fan of Neon Noodle for quite a while now, so I’m always thrilled when I get my hands on their latest release. Nostalgism is another impressive release – starting with the deeply disturbing dirge of “Love Is The Only Word” and taking us on through an audio adventure of  doom-gaze, drone, experimental rock, and outside noise, this is one of those albums that stays with you long after it has finished playing. This is not an album for relaxing to, but fans of the noisier side of the dark ambient genre will absolutely love this masterpiece. Fantastic!


Various – Rhan​-​Tegoth

 

Rhan​-​Tegoth is the latest in the series of H.P. Lovecraft Mythos themed collaborations from the always impressive Cryo Chamber label. Here, over 20 artists have linked studios and sound for over a year to create deep audio collaborative exploration of the mythos and Rhan-Tegoth (a fifteen foot tall, medusa-like, insectoid amphibious Great Old One). With contributions / input from artists such as Atrium Carceri, Gdanian, Tineidae, Skrika, Dead Melodies, and God Body Disconnect (to name just a few!) the music here is of the highest standard, with dark ambient soundscapes perfectly blended together with otherworldly field recordings to create a 2 hour album that is jaw-droppingly good. Like all of the albums in the series before it, this is an absolute must have!


SoRIAH, Norman Westberg and Hans Joachim Roedelius – LUMINA

 

With LUMINA, world-renowned throat singer/performance artist/shaman SoRIAH returns with an incredible set of two collaborations featuring experimental legends Hans Joachim Roedelius (Cluster, Harmonia) and Norman Westberg (Swans). The music here is majestic, ethereal, and spiritual in both vibe and tone – and is intended to bring peace to the lost souls of those who have recently passed, a common overarching theme of SoRIAH‘s work. This album is also available here on beautiful 10” white smoke vinyl, with a hand numbered limited edition of 350. Simply wonderful.


Autoprozessor – Die Wiederkehr

 

Now, this is very cool! An album of guitar based ambient, that combines elements of drone and dark ambient with a more guitar centric sound to create an album that is quite unlike anything I’ve listened to for a while. Yes, it’s not as “dark” as a lot of dark ambient, but if you like your music to offer something a little different then this release is well worth your attention – I’ve had this album on repeat play since I first heard it, and I’ve found myself drawn again and again to the subtle soundscapes it contains. Gorgeous.


CrAwE – IC​)​)​)​ENI

 

As regular readers will know, I am massive CrAwE fan, so when I saw that he was releasing a new album I was absolutely thrilled! IC​)​)​)​ENI is “…Inspired by the original Anarcho-feminist Boudica and the people of the Iceni/Eceni whose footprints in the soil can be felt as I walk my dog Moon in the Norðfolc countryside…” and builds on the previous albums – with bowed guitar / bowed bass, synth, tape loops and field recordings all combining to produce a soundscape to the apocalypse. Here, especially in the first track, the subtle field recordings add an extra level of magic to the mix, resulting in some haunting, goosebump-inducing music. Very highly recommended!


Hiemis – Malleus Maleficarum

 

Spanish musician, Hiemis, combines dark ambient, ritual sounds, and drones to create albums of dark and disturbing environments. Malleus Maleficarum, as the name suggests, is based on the most famous of all books on witchcraft and perfectly captures the nature of the book that was ultimately used as a manual for the Inquisition in their cruel and bloodthirsty crusade against witchcraft. The music here is deliciously bleak, dark and heavy – and ideal for giving yourself nightmares. Stunning!


Venus Volcanism – Tissue

 

Venus Volcanism is a vocalist, musician, and sound explorer from the island of Crete, now based in Iceland. Tissue was written and recorded just 40 km south of the Arctic Circle, and combines ethereal vocals, drones and field recordings to wonderful effect. This is definitely one of those albums that is perfect for listening to on headphones as you lie back in a darkened room, losing yourself in the unfolding music. Beautiful.


Cryo Chamber – Dark Ambient of 2023

 

Continuing their yearly tradition, this is Cryo Chamber‘s annual album highlighting some of their many excellent releases from the previous twelve months. With contributions from Mount ShrineCrypthiosDUGA-1Void StasisAtrium CarceriCaldon GloverGdanianKristof Bathory, and Keosz, this is a great way to discover some new artists and albums, and to explore the dark ambient genre in general. And what’s more, it’s completely free! And absolute must have for fans of dark ambient!


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – November 2023

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


SONOLOGYST – Shortwave Spectrum

 

Well, this is very cool – an album of dark ambient / deep drone, inspired by and using edited shortwave radio broadcasts from the mysterious ‘number stations’ that during the cold war (and beyond) transmitted coded messages for agents deep undercover in enemy nations. The resulting album is a collection of haunting and otherworldly tracks unlike anything I’ve heard in a long time. As a bonus, Sonologyst has included a 7th track that is less filtered – it contrasts beautifully with the six expertly crafted tracks that came before it, and provides an even deeper experience of these ghostly broadcasts. Highly recommended!


Joel Gilardini, Lars Bröndum, Mombi Yuleman, Vongoiva – Black Programs Facility

 

Black Programs Facility is a project by the ever awesome ZeroK label and features albums from of their four label veterans: Joel Gilardini, Lars Bröndum, Mombi Yuleman, and Vongoiva. The music here includes dark ambient, looping drones, electro-acoustic soundscapes, and experimental noise ambient. Each of these 28 tracks is of the highest quality, and each of the 4 albums here would be worth getting individually, they are all that good – getting all 4 albums together is simply incredible!


Spacecraft – Above the Clouds

 

Spacecraft is back with another amazingly delicious album of soothing space ambient, featuring soaring drones and ambient soundscapes. This is one of those albums that is just dying to be played on headphones, as you like back in a darkened room, letting yourself get lost in the unfolding sonic soundscapes. Perfect music for relaxing and for meditation, but also a captivating listen in its own right. Simply wonderful!


Mario Lino Stancati – Revision

 

Revision, is the 3rd Mario Lino Stancati release with the Unexplained Sounds Group, and features recordings from 2017 to 2021. This album is a great place to start exploring the music from this talented artist, giving the listener an insight into his extensive body of work of electronic and concrete music. Some of it is far from easy listening, but that’s sort of the point – with the absence of formal constraints allowing Stancati to take us on audio journeys like no other – where the chaotic nature of the world around us is reflected back at us. Impressive!


Triswara – Transcendent

 

Listening to the latest album from Triswara is an almost spiritual experience – evolving drones are complimented by mystic chanting and subtle field recordings, creating an audio journey that takes the listener to other worlds and other realms, yet retains its Earthen roots. In places, it’s almost tribal, and fans of ritual dark ambient will find plenty to savour. Exceptional stuff!


Sam – Sun melted my soul

 

The latest release from Sam is another wonderful album of blues inspired drone, featuring echoing acoustic guitars and haunting soundscapes, all gorgeously wrapped up in looping drones and mid-western melodies. It’s refreshingly different from most dark ambient / drone, yet retains the reflective nature of the wider genre. The resulting album is – quite frankly – breath-taking, and very highly recommended if you are looking for something a little different. Gorgeous!


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – October 2023

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!

Note: Unfortunately, due to real-world demands, we have not had the time this month to provide accompanying mini-reviews for the below albums – but we wanted to share these amazing releases with you so that you can check them out yourself – either by visiting each Bandcamp page in turn, or by clicking on our BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page.


Gdanian – Mechanical Gods

 

 

Virus2020 ( فيروس ٢٠٢٠ ) – Khushue

 

Aeons – Into Eternity​’​s Embrace

 

Hiemal – Guarding Eternity

 

Various Artists – The Necronomicon Pages

 

Jeton Hoxha – VOWEL

 

qorakitobchi – Ruins of Uzbekistan

 

Neon Noodle – Impossible Window

 

Various Artists – Music For Haunted Asylums

 

Various Artists – Anthology Of Contemporary Post Industrial Music

 

JUSTIN WALTER – Destroyer

 

Mantis and Shadow – Epicedes

 

The Black Dog – My Brutal Life

 

Shadow Echo Canyon – sleeping among ice and mud

 

Yudol – Anthems of Nonexistence

 

 

Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

IDIL Awards – call reminder

The “In Darkness Is Light“, new international dark experimental music awards by Eighth Tower Magazine is still open to submissions, with the closing deadline of 31 December 2023 several months away.

The IDIL Awards are dedicated to all forms of dark experimental music and promotes the innovation and research in the field of dark electronics and dark electroacoustic music.

15 tracks among all the ones submitted will be selected and included in a compilation to be digitally published by Eighth Tower Records in February 2024. An international jury composed of radio djs, podcasters, and reviewers, will assign a score to every track to determine prize winners.

Prizes:
– Prize for the 1st classified project: € 200,00 + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 2nd classified project: € 100,00 + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 3rd classified project: 1 year free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 4th classified project: 6 months free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 5th classified project: 3 months free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine.
– All tracks will be played in the Unexplained Sounds streaming radio program and all radios programs of the circuit.

Participation Guidelines:
– submissions of a single track for each project (maximum 8 minutes, .wav or .flac format) to info@unexplainedsounds.com;
– tracks must be unpublished and exclusive made for the compilation mentioned above;
– it’s requested a bio and a description of the project;
– links to video and visual material will be welcomed;
– multiple projects from the same person won’t be allowed;
– track submissions via link to Wetransfer, Google or other similar transfer services;
– deadline December, 31, 2023.
Preliminary condition to participate:
– to be subscribed at least for 2 months to the Eighth Tower magazine (tier Apprentice Supporter or upper tiers): https://www.patreon.com/eighthtower

Jury members:
– Raffaele Pezzella – Eighth Tower publisher (Italy)
– Mike Borella – Avant Music News web zine (US)
– Dj SpaceTerrapin – Enclosure Three radio program (Germany)
– David Loveless – The Dungeon In Deep Space blog (US)
– Rich Dodgin – This Is Darkness webzine (US)
– Bram Hagers – Horae Obscura podcast (Belgium)
– Bepi Crespan – CITR 101.9FM (Vancouver, Canada)
– Paul Casey – Independent reviewer (US)
– David Warmbier – Spectrasonicsound podcast (US)
– Peter Van Cooten – Ambientblog (Netherlands)

Sponsored by Eighth Tower: https://www.patreon.com/eighthtower
Sponsor partner: Avant Music News: https://avantmusicnews.com

Anyone who would like to support the “In Darkness Is Light” Awards to grow and increase the amount of prizes in time, can donate here: paypal.me/usggroup

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – August 2023

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


Yui Onodera – Mizuniwa

 

The latest release from Tokyo-based sound artist and composer Yui Onodera is this wonderful collection of ambient drone, created using a combination of sounds including synth, electric guitar and field recordings. The end result is an album of hypnotically tranquil music with a gorgeously subtle dark edge. This album is perfect for losing yourself in as you let the music draw you into its multi-layered depths. Stunning.


Various Artists – Unexplained Sounds Group – 9th Annual Report (Mid Year Edition)

 

The mid year edition of the 9th Annual Report from the ever impressive Unexplained Sounds Group label pulls together some of the best experimental and avant-garde music of 2023. The talented musicians contributing to the album are from across the globe, and the range of music included here is as equally diverse. Fans of purely traditional dark ambient / drone may not find all of the music here to their taste, but those who enjoy music that pushes the boundaries of the genre will absolutely love the experience of exploring this impressive audio collection. Very highly recommended.


Nihil Impvlse – ANABASIS

 

The new album from Nihil Impvlse, Anabasis, is an impressive drone industrial soundtrack, which skilfully combine elements of dark ambient, drone and post-industrial music to create something rather special. This is an album that grabs you by the throat, pulls you into the shadows, and then shows you the universal darkness everyone tries to pretend doesn’t exist. With glitches, distorted machine sounds, and eerie industrial drones, this isn’t easy listening – but that’s the point. Outstanding.


IO – Golden Thread

 

Golden Thread is the latest single by sound and visual artist IO, and is part of a project dedicated to the work of Sir Edward Burne-Jones entitled The Flower Book comprising 38 inspired paintings. This is a wonderful track of dark ambient,  dripping with atmosphere and melancholy, with added drone and industrial elements added to the mix – resulting in an introspective number that I found drew me back to it again and again. Simply beautiful.


Sangam – Rest Assured

 

The latest release from the awesome Decaying Spheres label is this impressive album from UK based electronic artist, Sangam. Combining carefully crafted synth work with slow evolving drones and subtle vocal flourishes, this is an album full of forlorn melodies and an underlying emotional charge. The music here is perfect for chilling out and unwinding, and I found myself hypnotised by the soothing cosmic soundscapes and undulations. Incredible.


Handalien – Codex Mortis

 

Slithering Black Records are definitely a label to watch, because everything they have released so far has been of outstanding quality. This release from Handalien is no exception – with doom-laden dark ambient combined with a black metal mindset and threatening drones, this is the stuff of deliciously dark nightmares. An absolute must-have for fans of Lovecraft inspired haunting dark / black ambient!


Fionnlagh – Beyond The Void

 

I really enjoyed What Came Before and What Came After, two of Fionnlagh‘s previous releases, so I was delighted when he got in touch to announce his new album, Beyond The Void was coming out! The music here is a little mellower than those previous releases, but no less impressive – with slow unfolding drones expertly combined with haunting glitches and snippets of electronic soundscapes that together produce an otherworldly audio experience that is simply breath-taking. Gorgeous.


Sam – Drone Bells On The Field

 

I’m a big fan of musicians that aren’t afraid to try something a little different, so I was delighted when I discovered this incredibly cool album of country / blues drone, because Polish musician Sam has created something truly original here – combining a chilled out blues vibe with melancholic soul searching drones to full effect. Listening to the gorgeous music unfolding, it’s impossible not to find yourself transported to the wide open prairie of the historic US. Highly recommended!


Yousef Kawar – Unclear Frequencies

 

The latest album from internationally renowned musician, Yousef Kawar, is this incredible album of eerie, unsettling dark ambient. Each of the 8 tracks is oozing with atmosphere and an underlying sense of dread, and the sonic soundscapes are multi-layered meaning that is something new to discover and each and every time you listen to it. This is definitely an album to listen to on a pair of headphones, as you lie back in the dark, and let the music take it with you. Awe-inspiring stuff.


Mørket – Journey 11

 

The latest release from Greek dark ambient musician Mørket is Journey 11 – an album that combine atmospheric dark ambient with experimental electronica, to produce an unnerving audio experience. At times relaxing, at others harsh and relentless, the music here is challenging, but equally rewarding – and well worth the time of listeners who are looking for something that isn’t afraid to push the boundaries of both the dark ambient genre, and what constitutes ‘music’. Sublime!


Hali Palombo – Radio & My Voice

 

Oh wow! This latest release from Hali Palombo – a composer, visual artist and filmmaker from Chicago – is an album that expertly melds dark ambient soundscapes with field recordings and shortwave radio samples, with an end result that is simply stunning. Featuring piano, guitar and saxophone, the music here is organic and multi-layered, with the shortwave radio samples giving everything an eerie and frightening edge. Incredible!


Vyormouth – Liminal Spaces

 

The latest release from the awesome Zero K label is this wonderful 3 hours long (!) album of dark ambient from Vyormouth“… Liminal spaces refer to transitional or in-between areas that exist on the threshold between two distinct states or environments. These spaces are characterized by ambiguity, uncertainty, and a sense of being neither here nor there …” The album does an amazing job of conveying that sense of strangeness and ambiguity, with slowly unfolding drones and electronic / industrial sound effects and field recordings. Highly recommended!


A°🄳+S/P°₂₃ – Monolith III

 

Sombre Soniks releases some of the finest dark ambient / ritual ambient music, and their latest album is a collaboration between two great artists – A Demon Sheen (Grist) and P23 (Akoustik Timbre Frekuency) and features a jaw-droppingly awesome two hour drone / processed guitar soundscape! Perfect for zoning out and forgetting about everything about you, this album is one that deserves multiple listens with something new to discover each and every time. Wonderful!


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

Frozen In Time: This is Darkness playlist – June 2023

Here are the dark ambient albums that we at This is Darkness have been listening to this month – some are new releases, but a few are older gems we’ve just (re)discovered.

Please check these out by clicking on the Bandcamp link next to each review (or by clicking on the BNDCMPR link at the bottom of the page), and please consider supporting the featured artists. Enjoy!


CrAwE – Tre​(​O​)​w Dr​ē​Am​-​Cr​æ​ft​)​)​)

 

Regular readers will know that I a massive CrAwE fan – so I was absolutely thrilled when I learned that Adam was releasing this new 10 track album! As with his previous releases, the music here is a breathtaking blend of bow-played guitar based drone, synth work, tape loops, and field recordings. The end result is the audio equivalent of the apocalypse – full of brooding, haunting, doom-laden soundscapes. Simply wonderful.


Eudscher – SN23001

 

Eudscher is the brainchild of Belgian musician, Olivier Désir, who combines ghostly percussions and hypnotic drones to create a sonic experience that is both soothing, disturbing and captivating. His latest release, SN23001, is a 7 track collection of eerie, otherworldly minimalist soundscapes that effortlessly combines elements of electronica, noise ambient, and more traditional dark ambient. It’s incredible stuff, that draws the listener into an audio adventure that is part nightmare, part melancholic trip. Awesome!


Abandoned Toys – Where Tides Defy the Moon

 

The latest release on the Mythical Records label is this gorgeous album from Abandoned Toys, which beautifully combines dramatic neoclassical arrangements with dark ambient soundscapes. The end result is jaw-droppingly good – uplifting in parts, soothing in others, yet with a dark undercurrent running through it all. This is one of those albums that you lose yourself in, as the ethereal soundtrack unfolds and carries you along with it. A definite must-have for fans of neoclassical and avantgarde dark ambient!


Various Artists – Mysterium, Incubus et Terror. Music inspired by Edgar Allan Poe stories

 

Raffaele Pezzella (a.k.a. Sonologyst) does an incredible job of curating albums with a common theme (previous examples have included Dracula, HP Lovecraft, and David Cronenberg, to name just a few) and his latest release on the Eighth Tower Records label is this album of music inspired by Edgar Allan Poe stories. The music featured over the course of these 10 tracks is primarily dark ambient in nature, but there are also elements of noise, experimental, drone, and industrial – meaning that each track offers something different for the listener. This is one of those albums to give yourself nightmares as you listen to it alone in the dark. Terrifying!


Bonzaii – Das D​ä​mmern Der Welt

 

I’m a huge fan of both Bonzaii and the Decaying Spheres label, so I was delighted when I discovered this new 6 track album! This is another gorgeous release from Bonzaii, with discordant drones, field recordings, and low tempo synth patterns expertly blended together to create something very special. There is something about this music that fills me with a wistful poignancy, leaving me yearning for days long past and friends long lost, and the whole listening experience feels truly magical. Stunning.


Scott Lawlor – Screaming at the Light

 

This new release from Slithering Black Records sees Scott Lawson returning to the darker side of his wide musical repartee, with eerie drones and sinister dark ambient soundscapes combined perfectly to create an album that somehow manages to be both disturbing and soothing in equal measure. This is very highly recommended for fans of cinematic dark ambient and ethereal haunting drones. Fabulous!


Michael Bonaventure – Works 2018 – 2023

 

This collection of recent works by Michael Bonaventure features mesmorising drone and dark ambient soundscapes, created in large part through the use of a hammond organ. The resulting organic music offers a refreshingly classical, old-school take on the genre, with each and every track offering something a little different. In places this is dark and broody, in others it is more playful and almost joyous – but running throughout the entire album is a melancholic, almost bleak, undertone that means this will appeal to all fans of the dark ambient genre. Wonderful stuff.


Mount Shrine – Lost Loops Collection

 

César Alexandre a.k.a Mount Shrine was an incredibly talented and well-liked dark ambient musician, who sadly died from covid in 2021. This latest release from Cryo Chamber compiles all currently known underground albums, singles and EPs produced by Mount Shrine into an impressive 4 hour album of timeless music, full of shimmering, organic textures. The music here is quite simply breath-taking, and I’ve had this on repeat play since I first heard it, losing myself in its depths for hours. An absolute must-have of an album. Beautiful.


Various Artists – Anthology Of Electroacoustic Music From Finland

 

This latest release from the ever awesome Unexplained Sounds Group label is this impressive compilation of electro-acoustic music from Finland, with 9 tracks of dark ambient / experimental / drone that each offer something different, yet combine perfectly to create a flawless album from start to finish. I’ve really enjoyed listening to this album, and on the strength of what I’ve heard here, I’ve already been checking out some of the contributors to see what else they’ve released. This rewarding album is highly recommended for fans of electro-acoustic music, or for those looking for something a little different. Fantastic stuff.


Spacecraft – Ethereal

 

I’m a big fan of Mumbai based Spacecraft, so was delighted when I heard there was a new album of his downtempo ambient soundscapes. As the name suggests, the music on Ethereal is light, delicate, and beautiful – with slowly evolving drones skillfully blended with gentle synths and subtle soundscapes. The end result is simply gorgeous, with a soothing, almost meditative vibe that makes this album perfect for relaxing and unwinding to. Wonderful.


Ian Nyquist – BLACK EARTH CAIRN

 

Inspired by cathartic expeditions through the Wicklow Mountains near his home in Dublin, Black Earth Cairn is an album of haunting dark ambient and drone soundscapes that perfectly captures the mood of the bleak and unforgiving landscape. Utilising the “visceral, brutal, metallic quality” of his bass guitar, Ian Nyquist has created an album that is dark, otherworldly, and disturbing in equal measure. This is not an album for the faint-hearted, but one that will reward those who listen to it. Gorgeously dark!


Dragon & Jettenbach – Interesting Times

 

I’m a massive fan of Dragon & Jettenbach, falling in love with each and every album they release. Their latest album, Interesting Times, is a masterpiece of electronic ambient drone, with 8 tracks of atmospheric soundscape dark ambient sprinkled with elements of glitch and post-industrial excellence. This is another album I’ve had on repeat play since I first heard it – with each listen offering me something new as I dive deep into its discordant depths. An absolute must have for those who like dark ambient / drone with an electronic edge. Incredible stuff.


Phoan – HARVEST

 

The latest release from Italian sound designer & experimental electronic music composer Phoan, is this wonderful collection that includes his first 2 EPs, a demo, and a track from a compilation released by the Tiny Drones For Lovers label. I’m a huge fan of Phoan‘s first EP, so it’s great to have all of his music on a single release, and the inclusion of the demo and compilation album track is a nice bonus. The music here is stunning, with subtle synth sounds perfectly blended with soaring drones, resulting in music that gets the balance between dark ambient and experimental electronica spot on. Highly recommended!


HANDALIEN – Apocalypse (single)

 

Handalien creates cinematic dark ambient, and their latest release, Apocalypse, is a breathtaking 18 minute track of eerie and atmospheric dark ambient. Featuring skillfully blended field recordings and evolving drones, this is a dark and brooding piece that sucks the listener into its black depths as it slowly unfolds. This is one of those gorgeously dark tracks made for listening to as you lie on the sofa with the lights out. Simply wonderful.


Loss – I Kill Everything (Reissue)

 

The latest release from the awesome Inner Demons Records label is this re-release from label owner Dan‘s own project Loss. His debut album, I Kill Everything, was originally released on the Spectre label back in 2005, and is now available again and includes 2 additional remixes. This is very much on the “noise” side of the dark ambient genre, with aggressive industrial beats and screeching glitches added to the mix to create a soundtrack for the dystopian future we’re already living in. Highly recommended!


Various Artists – Music For Abandoned Monasteries

 

Music For Abandoned Monasteries features 15 tracks of haunting dark ambient / drone, with each track providing a creepy soundscape perfect for exploring these abandoned ancient buildings. Featuring a range of talented musicians, including Mombi Yuleman, Michael Bonaventure, Torus Dome, and Kloob to name just a few, this is an album that rewards multiple listens, with something new to discover each and every time you wander through the crumbling ruins. Gorgeous.


LAN Formatique – Mud & Flame

 

Another release on the awesome Inner Demons Records label, this is an incredible album of harsh and aggressive noise ambient, with a brooding undercurrent and a melancholic sense of despair running through it. This is another album I’ve had on repeat play, with the skillful blend of dark ambient and noise ambient drawing me in again and again. In places, this isn’t an easy listen, but LAN Formatique has created something special here, and this is an album that will reward those who take the time to explore what it has to offer. Stunning.


Click on the below image to go to this month’s This is Darkness playlist on BNDCMPR, which features 1 track from each of the above albums:


 

 

 

Eighth Tower Magazine announces “In Darkness Is Light” international dark experimental music awards

Eighth Tower Magazine has announced “In Darkness Is Light“, new international dark experimental music awards.

The “In Darkness Is Light” Awards (IDIL Awards) is dedicated to all forms of dark experimental music and promotes the innovation and research in the field of dark electronics and dark electroacoustic music.

15 tracks among all the ones submitted will be selected and included in a compilation to be digitally published by Eighth Tower Records in February 2024. An international jury composed of radio djs, podcasters, and reviewers, will assign a score to every track to determine prize winners.

Prizes:
– Prize for the 1st classified project: € 200,00 + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 2nd classified project: € 100,00 + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 3rd classified project: 1 year free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 4th classified project: 6 months free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine;
– Prize for the 5th classified project: 3 months free subscription to the Eighth Tower magazine + a full special on the magazine.
– All tracks will be played in the Unexplained Sounds streaming radio program and all radios programs of the circuit.

Participation Guidelines:
– submissions of a single track for each project (maximum 8 minutes, .wav or .flac format) to info@unexplainedsounds.com;
– tracks must be unpublished and exclusive made for the compilation mentioned above;
– it’s requested a bio and a description of the project;
– links to video and visual material will be welcomed;
– multiple projects from the same person won’t be allowed;
– track submissions via link to Wetransfer, Google or other similar transfer services;
– deadline December, 31, 2023.
Preliminary condition to participate:
– to be subscribed at least for 2 months to the Eighth Tower magazine (tier Apprentice Supporter or upper tiers): https://www.patreon.com/eighthtower

Jury members:
– Raffaele Pezzella – Eighth Tower publisher (Italy)
– Mike Borella – Avant Music News web zine (US)
– Dj SpaceTerrapin – Enclosure Three radio program (Germany)
– David Loveless – The Dungeon In Deep Space blog (US)
– Rich Dodgin – This Is Darkness webzine (US)
– Bram Hagers – Horae Obscura podcast (Belgium)
– Bepi Crespan – CITR 101.9FM (Vancouver, Canada)
– Paul Casey – Independent reviewer (US)
– David Warmbier – Spectrasonicsound podcast (US)
– Peter Van Cooten – Ambientblog (Netherlands)

Sponsored by Eighth Tower: https://www.patreon.com/eighthtower
Sponsor partner: Avant Music News: https://avantmusicnews.com

Anyone who would like to support the “In Darkness Is Light” Awards to grow and increase the amount of prizes in time, can donate here: paypal.me/usggroup

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