Bandcamp Picks of the Week is back and better than ever
Deeper – AUTO-PAIN
Favorite Tracks: “This Heat,” “Willing,” “Lake Song”
It feels like a lifetime ago, and yet technically it was just over two months ago that Andy Gill passed away. The Gang of Four member was a pioneer for post-punk and art rock the world over (and a pretty decent producer too) and the angular, jagged funk of that guitar sound endures to this day through a rotating cast of bands. A recent crop of these acts have embellished the dancy, underground disco undercurrent of their work rather than the moody, gothy pastiche, which has resulted in some really satisfying releases from artists like Corridor and Flasher. In that camp, Deeper’s brand of bass-heavy angular rock knows how to trip the light fantastic, and their sophomore release AUTO-PAIN has some of the year’s most exciting grooves. “This Heat” is among the catchiest singles of 2020, a sprase, driving post-punk boogie that really moves, and cuts like “The Knife” and “Run” fuse tight rhythm sections with memorable, explosive bass and guitar parts. That cutting Gang of Four sound is most apparent on opener “Esoteric,” with a gripping slap to each component, from Nic Gohl’s drawling vocals to the way the snare and hi-hat rattle with a steady, isolated dance-punk vigor. Deeper’s best songs, and the ones that really tighten AUTO-PAIN from good to great, are the hypnotic, slowed down tracks like “Willing,” “Lake Song,” and “Helena’s Flowers,” each leaden, lightheaded after-hours jams. The Chicago band have really elevated themselves on their latest album, one that features some of the year’s best songs. Give it a listen over on Bandcamp.
Kaatayra – SÓ QUEM VIU O RELÂMPAGO À SUA DIREITA SABE
Genre: Brazilian Folk, Ambient Black Metal
Favorite Track: “Desnaturação de Si-Mesmo”
I’d equate listening to SÓ QUEM VIU O RELÂMPAGO À SUA DIREITA SABE to watching Werner Hertzog’s AGUIRRE, THE WRATH OF GOD, as the lively, unsuspecting denseness of the rainforest backdrop that hangs over Kaatayra’s latest increasingly grows into a source of madness the longer we brave it. A fusion of Brazilian folk music and black metal, with hints of that ambient rainforest coating the whole mix as it delves deeper and deeper into its own self-created insanity, Kaatayra’s latest is gripping, cinematic, and fresh in ways that lots of black metal tries and fails to be. It is punishing, yes, although rarely do the songs roar with a kind of physical anger. Instead, SÓ QUEM VIU O RELÂMPAGO À SUA DIREITA SABE is more of a spiritual anger—the final minute-and-a-half of opener “Chama Terra, Chama Chuva” is frantic, dizzying folk guitar strumming over violent, distant drums and shakers and the effect is still terrifying in its own way, the repetition of the experience closer to something Swans would experiment with. Hearing singer Caio Lemos’ furious, distant growls over this beautiful but haunting and angry folk music is quite a visceral experience, scary at its core, horror in broad daylight that is unclear how to escape. It’s been one of my favorite musical experiences of 2020. Give everything Kaatayra’s making a listen over on Bandcamp.