August 2022 Sounds and Shadows Darkscene Singles Chart

Time again my friends for the latest installment of the Sounds and Shadows Darkscene singles chart. As always these are singles released in the month of August from the very loose definition of Darkscene. They are submitted by the S & S collective of Djs, Reviewers, Promotors, Bands, Artists, and Superfans around the world and presented for you. If you are an artists with a release for September 2022 please submit on the S & S Facebook page.

  1. Pilgrims of YearningLa Mar
  2. The Bellwether SyndicateDystopian Mirror
  3. Vision VideoBeautiful Day To Die
  4. Ultra SunnThe Speed
  5. The Joy Thieves Feat: I Ya ToyahLove Is A Battlefield
  6. Rohn/Ledderman It Hurts
  7. Brute Opposition – Destroy This Place
  8. Black Rose Burning (Feat: Delphine Coma) – Under Twin Suns
  9. Black Needle NoiseFair Winds
  10. Double EyelidLeaving These Stones Unturned
  1. Pilgrims of YearningLa Mar – I was so ecstatic to see the Boston shadowsynth band finish in 1st place. Delicious 90’s Siouxsie with texture snake delay guitars. Juls delivers a haunting and soulful performance. This is a must have in your collection.

La Mar | Pilgrims of Yearning (bandcamp.com)

The Bellwether Syndicate Dystopian Mirror – What a howling wolf hot rod banger from the Chicago legends. I love the reckless charging feel of a band of people that have done so much they have nothing to lose. This is peak window down night driving music. William Faith really brings the swagger and menace to this track, really showing his range. Open your next road trip with it, then put it on the playlist 4 or 5 more times on the trip.

The Bellwether Syndicate (bandcamp.com)

Vision VideoBeautiful Day To Die – This is gorgeous. Dusty and company really summoned their inner Smiths for this elegant and tragic ballad that would be the reflective song in your hero’s darkest moment in the movie. There is a very good reason Vision Video is quickly becoming one of the biggest names in modern darkscene.

Haunted Hours | Vision Video (bandcamp.com)

ULTRA SUNNThe Speed – Belgian darkwave danceperatos on Cold Transmission Music bring a thic and pounding bassline and sex dripping David Gahan vocals. This is that talking piece your next party needs.

Summer 22 | ULTRA SUNN (bandcamp.com)

The Joy Thieves (Feat: I Ya Toyah)Love Is A Battlefield – Denver label Riveting Music known for doing charity tribute albums released Girl Power to raise funds for Global Fund For Women. The Chicago super group did this version of the PaT Benatar classic with Ania from I Ya Toyah singing. It is a show stopping explosion of electronic chaos and hard rock fury. Every time The Thieves tackle a classic cover I think is untouchable, they find a way to come crashing through the wall and convince me they are the one band that deserves to cover this song.

Love is a Battlefield | The Joy Thieves | Riveting Music (bandcamp.com)

Rohn – LedermanIt Hurts – I really do fall in love all over again whenever Jean-Marc and Emileigh launch forth another single from the ether. The layered vocals with different presence and riot grrl energy gives it a frantic sting. Jean Marc makes every build feel fast without feeling intense. A futuristic railway traveling at blistering speed but never out of control. Stefan Netschio of (Beborn Beton) did my favorite remix which kept the laser flickering at maximum velocity.

It Hurts! | Rohn – Lederman (bandcamp.com)

Brute OppositionDestroy This Place – I didn’t know the Jacksonville Florida band well. Cool chanting Front 242 Industrial vibes. Definitely well produced and a proper homage to old school industrial. I also love the positive message in the lyrics. Don’t give up, take these fukers down with you.

Destroy This Place | Brute Opposition (bandcamp.com)

 Black Rose BurningUnder Twin Suns featuring Delphine Coma – New York science fiction songsmith George Grant has teamed up with some other goth superstars to remix his Dune inspired banger Under Twin Suns. This version is done by Ashe of Delphine Coma who blasted the sandworm bassline and left George’s captivating vocals calling from within the desert canyon. I love when you can hear the appreciation for an amazing song in the remix. This remix is a loving tribute.

https://blackroseburning.bandcamp.com/album/under-twin-suns-reborn

Black Needle Noise with Ruby Friedman and Colin McGuinnessFair Winds – So this band is almost unfair in it’s level of talent and pedigree from COP International. Starting of course with living legend John Fryer who is unparalleled as both a producer and song writer. The song was originally slated for a TV show about the Isle of Man. It features vocal stylings from Ruby Friedman who strikes forth with epic expansive chilled wind power. It’s more landscape experience than ear worn, but it leaves the hair on the back of your arms standing up with it’s power.

Fair Winds | Black Needle Noise with Ruby Friedman and Colin McGuinness | Black Needle Noise (bandcamp.com)

Double EyelidLeaving These Stones Unturned – My amazing friend Ian from Toronto with another underwater horror hit. I love the stalking menace of this track. It’s a secret, a whisper, a song you are inside of full of supernatural build which culminates in emotional release. People need to stop sleeping on Double Eyelid.

Leaving These Stones Unturned | Double Eyelid (bandcamp.com)

If you have a single release in September or know of one in the broad Darkscene genre please submit in the Sounds and Shadows Facebook group.

September Bandcamp Day Is Nearly Upon Us. What Does Your Collection Need?

I haven’t been churning out reviews at my normal pace, but that does mean I have a glorious golden stack of darkscene music to prime your soul for the Halloween season. I have some long awaited releases to discuss. Some fresh new bands I have discovered. Some spooky new corners of music I have stumbled into. So let’s dive into some of the sexy dark sounds which are haunting the beginning of Autumn

Double EyelidLeaving These Stones Unturned – Do you know what I love to hear in the modern scene? An artist no afraid to unapologetically embrace the theatrical melancholy of goth. This is something Toronto based band Double Eyelid grasps well. Ian has a voice dripping with lost lament on a turbulent storm of bass. The song swells and collapses. The lyrics are a confession of buried truth too frightening to face. Powerful revelation in a time of surface reflection.

released August 16, 2022
written by Ian Revell
……………………………………………………….
Ian Revell – Vocals, synth, programming
Sky Shaver – Guitar
Sean Beesley – Additional synth

Produced and mixed by Live Evil Productions
Mastered by Noah Mintz for The Lacquer Channel

Leaving These Stones Unturned | Double Eyelid (bandcamp.com)

SINEMantis 2 – Follow up EP to Mantis 1 by the Texas chaos electronica artist Rona Rogueheart. Powerful resonating attacks open the experience. As though you peeled away the smooth edges of Portishead trip hop and revealed something crueler and jagged while maintaining the wet sensual humidity of a packed stone wall club.

Photo by Victoria Renard

Rona Rougeheart / lead vocals, drums, programming
Words by Rona Rougeheart
Music by Rona Rougeheart / Charles Godfrey
Guitar on “Jetset” by Daniel Beaty

*Except:
Written by: Robert James Smith, Steven Severin
Music by Mark Pistel / Rona Rougeheart

Produced by Charles Godfrey / Rona Rougeheart
Recorded at Omenview and Scary American, Austin, TX
Mastered by Mark Pistel at Room 5, San Francisco, CA

Favorite Track:

Virtual Realitease – This track stalks with contrasts and extremes. The thundering club bass, the heavy shimmer of throaty vocals, the razor edge of alure and menace. I love the range of the EP which is always changing the journey. The pastel rain-streaked sorrow of “Je Suid“. This track just hits different though. I’m just not hearing this blend of sounds enough in the modern scene and it has me hooked.

Mantis 2 | SINE (bandcamp.com)

ULTRA SUNNSummer 22 – Belgian cold wave artist Ultra Sunn on Cold Transmission Music with a double single release that bops with Violator keyboard transitions and sizzling Gahan vocals. A purposeful driving beat of motion while keeping the tempo just below chaos. Expertly mastered by Pete Burns the tone flickers like a bright flame on a distant candle. These tracks both have a place on your summer darkscene party mix.

Summer 22 | ULTRA SUNN (bandcamp.com)

thePicassosExhumed – I love nothing more than the chance to shout to the sky about a gifted and haunting band in my own backyard of Michigan. We even have the honor of playing with them at Skull Festival 11/20/22 at Noir Leather in Royal Oak Michigan. This album which dropped August 2022 is a darting ebony fencing match of furious clashing metal that strikes and counters with such speed you lose sight of the precision in the illusion of chaos.

https://www.skulldetroit.com/?fbclid=IwAR2ofT3j53lHO9IsR3rh7By4L-iUBllSsT5v0SZ20YYq3sR4zFMGURd8PBo

Charles Urban

So many glorious and eclectic dark elements at play here. Twangy Latin spice notes in the guitar. Haunted murder ballad Nick Cave tones. The vocals are a roller coaster blend of Gordan Gano and Frank Black. Great use of guitars for percussion, not overdone and adding powerful accent. I looked online to learn more about the band and found little. Luckily I am set to interview them tomorrow for the podcast. Fills me with excitment for a bright future and I am so glad I found them in Michigan.

Favorite Track: Smoke and Mirrors – Part of my love here is the vast range from track to track. This one had huge PixiesDoolittle” energy. Slashing guitars with a booming clean bass tone. A haunting effortless truth to the delivery. I enjoyed all the songs for different reasons, this one seemed to compile the best flavors of everything going right.

Exhumed | thePicassos (bandcamp.com)

The Bellwether SyndicateDystopian Mirror – Chicago show stopper’s have a brilliant new single that roars like a muscle car charging down Woodward Ave. Flames spewing out the engine to chase back the darkness. William croons with an extra edge of piercing determination. The mix is clear but always feels like a toe on the line which makes it feel dangerous, on the verge of shattering the glass bubble. They just took this song on the road with Then Comes Silence from Sweeden. Of everyone I currently follow in the modern darkscene, no one has more “rockstar” energy than William with a mic in his hand.

Released August 5, 2022
William Faith: Vox • Guitars
Sarah Rose Faith: Vox • Guitars

Corey Gorey: Guitars (live)
Philly Peroxide: Keyboards • Percussion (live)
Stevyn Grey: Drums (live)

The Bellwether Syndicate (bandcamp.com)

Pilgrims of YearningHadal – Long awaited release from Boston transplants POY which hits the mark perfectly. I love hearing a band grow from album to album by keeping the mystical wanderlust that made their sound stand out, yet graduating their production and layering to make the energy sharper. Juls voice captures a haunting Siouxsie Superstition” 90s vibe while the guitar rhythms fold and dart like a weaver on a loom. This is a band that really exposes their story with brazen courage and beautiful delivery. A contagious spooky tendril of psychedelic darkness winding around your vision.

Favorite Track: Storms – One because I love the duet, two because I love a banger and this bassline is a live wire flapping on the street in a storm. It gets in your blood and never lets up. Like a jaguar running it is equal parts danger and beauty.

Hadal | Pilgrims of Yearning (bandcamp.com)

Kill Shelter – Asylum

In 2019 at the beginning of my goth renaissance UK producer Pete Burns released the album “Damage” in response to the trauma he was experiencing over the passing of his mother. He wrote the lyrics and music to each song while bringing in a different up and coming vocalist for every track. The result was a magical instant classic which became my top albums of the year for this review page. Damage was so far ahead of the game in what would become the new standard for both collaborative possibilities as well as a defining new tone in goth/post punk.

Kill Shelter review of : Damage – Sounds and Shadows

All songs written by Pete Burns except
The Necklace – words by Johan Lange, music by Pete Burns

Backing Vocals by Lynsey Burns
Concept and Artwork by Pete Burns
Vocals, Guitars, Bass, Synths and Programming by Pete Burns
Produced, Mixed and Mastered by Pete Burns at The Shelter

Fast forward to 2021 when Pete collaborated with one of the great guitar wizard of the modern Post Punk era Karl Morten Dahl of Antipole for “A Haunted Place“. A textural sonic painting where Pete took the helm of his own vocal duties. A flash negative exposed shadow dance. A beautiful departure with a focus on tone and abstraction.

A Haunted Place | Kill Shelter & Antipole | Kill Shelter (bandcamp.com)

Welcome to present day. Kill Shelter releases their third album Asylum, and the world has started to catch on to the soft-spoken genius setting the standard for this new wave. Featuring a slew of the biggest names of the scene: Stephan Netschio ( Beborn Beton) , Valentina Veil (VV & the Void), Karl Morten Dahl (Antipole) , Emanuel Åström (Agent Side Grinder) Alessandro Belluccio (Ash Code), William Faith (The Bellwether Syndicate), Ronny Moorings (Clan of Xymox). An impressive list of talent and experience which speaks to the respect Pete has catered as a producer and song writer. This album tackles an even darker theme of trauma and the most shocking pain of the human experience. Casting a light through a wide range of vocal prisms. The completion of a journey started just after Damage in 2019 and meticulously refined over four years.

Asylum [US Version] | Kill Shelter (bandcamp.com)

One of the powerful aspects of Damage was how it used the vehicle of a record to expose new listeners to collaborators with projects that all demand attention. I found several new bands that helped bridge my way into the modern Darkscene. Previous to creating Damage, Pete partnered on a blog with Christian Schaefer called (Rule of Three) to discover cutting edge bands and share them with the world. I am going to explore some of these standout tracks and the singers with the compilation feel this album has.

Asylum [European Version] | Kill Shelter (bandcamp.com)

In this Place: Featuring Beborn Beton – Singer Stephan Netschio of the German darksynth band has a voice that coasts the perfect line between grit and ice. Unnerving tension meets guitar percussion that staggers and ripples. I love the way it builds and expands without increasing in volume or speed. A masterclass in emotional impact with subtle elements.

A Worthy Compensation (Deluxe Edition) | Beborn Beton (bandcamp.com)

Valentina Veil of VV and the Void

Queen of Hearts (Feat: Valentina Veil) – Domestic violence is a difficult topic to address. Clashing fronts of synth and percussion is given gravitas by Valentina‘s overlapping vocal performance. A disassociated wispy dream with retro energy of Projekt Records. The entwined guitar lines feel like two rippling ropes shaken in alternate succession by someone working out. The spoken word section delivered in another tone solidify the duality of concept. Valentina was meant to be on Damage, it is so fitting she finally makes an appearance on a Kill Shelter album.

VV & The Void (bandcamp.com)

Bonafide TUUUUNE

Buried Deep (Feat: Antipole) – This track could have been on “First and Last and Always” with it’s bottom of the well bass resonance and shadow ripple guitar leads. In that vein Pete summons a cyborg Eldrich delivery both haunting and frozen as it faces a heavy weight too much to bare.

Marble | Antipole (bandcamp.com)

The Necklace (Feat: Agent Side Grinder) – Swedish synthrock darlings with dance club scintillation and unique vocal tone/cadence that I could always pick out of the lineup. ASG vocals always feel like chorus vocals, but I have no reason to confirm. The same spotlight production that sounds on another level. This track has a switchblade danger to it’s tone that stands the hairs on my arm up.

REMA/X: THE A/X REMIXES | Agent Side Grinder (bandcamp.com)

Feed The Fire (Feat: Ash Code) – The shooting star Italian Darkwave band that has become a scene force in record time preparing is for a tour of Central and South America collaborated on this sleazy shadow disco track. Explosive rising synth spell strikes and particle accelerator guitars. The vocals capture the effortless cool dynamic Ash Code are famous for. Another heart wrenching concept done with razor sharp execution.

All We Ever Wanted Was Everything | Ash Code (bandcamp.com)

Cover Me (Feat: The Bellwether Syndicate) – If you were to ask me who gives off the most live rockstar energy in the modern darkscene, the answer is William Faith. This is another true club jam that will send folks charging to the floor. William‘s vocals are sheer romantic goth perfection. The lyrics are a darker poetry which helps form the complexity of meaning. William is a legend and Pete gave him an Aston Martin as a vehicle to drive to the front of the club and shine.

The Bellwether Syndicate (bandcamp.com)

All Of This (Feat: Clan of Xymox) – To say Ronny Morning was a definitive voice in the scene is a vast understatement. One of the inventers of darksynth post punk. This jam is a charging quartet of apocalyptic horses. A culmination of dark tides eroding an unforgiving shore. The progressive time changes and subtitle phrasing are a work of genius and emotional impact that hits you when you least expect it.

Clan Of Xymox (bandcamp.com)

Overall: Kill Shelter has done it again. Creating a personal emotional journey through post-traumatic stress with expert production and collaborative vocal performances that shine a light on some of the top singers in the scene. I can’t wait to release and rare upcoming interview on the Sounds and Shadows youtube page. We dig deeply into the process and feelings of one of the most important artists the modern era. When we speak to future musicians who are in the know about what influenced them in our time. Kill Shelter will be the Joy Division like name that trend setters were appreciating in the present.

A Guide To Cold Waves 2021 Day 1

What is it all about ?

In the summer of 2012, Chicago lost one of its most loved and respected sound engineers and musicians, Jamie Duffy. His work ethic and ingenuity in the local music scene was a gift to many musicians. His abrupt passing had a profound effect on the electronic and metal music communities he meant so much to. In need of healing and hope, we brought 14 bands together for one magical night that year to raise money for Jamie’s family and say goodbye. But in the end, it was more of an awakening… a rebirth… a breaking wave. The success of the show pushed us to build it into an annual event, stretching over a weekend and moving it to Chicago’s iconic Metro.

Cold Waves means a lot. It is a true culmination of everything great about this scene. People from all over the world coming together to meet and celebrate music, art, unity, and holding each other up through the darkest times. To remember Jamie and everyone who felt lost and alone. A hope that the scene will be there to lend strength to someone else in trauma tomorrow. It’s first and foremost a celebration of what makes life worth living. Music, art, friendship, and empathy. I will be returning for Saturday and Sunday. To see old friends and new. To hear music that will lift my heart at a time I need it most. Lets talk a bit about some of the bands and DJs preforming and think on friends both here and gone.

ALL COLD WAVES ATTENDEES MUST SHOW PROOF OF VACCINATION AT THE DOOR TO ATTEND THIS EVENT, NO EXCEPTIONS.
2. MASKS WILL BE MANDATORY TO ENTER, EXCEPTIONS WHILE IN OUTDOOR SIDE-LOT OR WHILE EATING/DRINKING
3. FINAL LINEUP NOW LISTED ABOVE!

9/23/21 Thursday at Smart Bar doors open at 8pm:

https://www.etix.com/ticket/p/2678031

Tickets still available

The Pirate Twins: Chicago goths legendary couple William Faith and Dj Scary Lady Sarah of The Bellwether Syndicate. They have one of the best followed Twitch stream shows of the pandemic. Offering a blend of old school and new goth/post punk/synthwave. I don’t know if there is a finger more firmly planted on the pulse of the dark scene. The Pirate Twins are as much a part of Chicago as nuclear green relish on hot dogs.

https://thebellwethersyndicate.bandcamp.com/

https://www.twitch.tv/scaryladysarah?fbclid=IwAR1_1e7JE1KhBVCQjDmFr5e_e1jVZNKFbTW4OWZuHnP1ZHGpytJFJgVRp7A

When I think of rock star charisma, I think of William and Sarah

Choke Chain : Milwaukee, Wisconsin razor edge EDM band who has been launching to notoriety with their new album ” Invoking Shadows“. Mark Trueman spews body shocking dance beats and venom charged vocals that infuse the audience with energy like a loa possession. This new EP is mastered by Eric Oehler of (Null Device and Klack) which bursts with a chaotic light and menacing intensity. A great way to set the tone for the festival. Choke Chain came on my radar from fellow Wisconsonite Benny Sweat of Sweat Boys, and has continued to be a rising star for this scene.

Mark Trueman of Choke Chain

I ask Mark what playing Cold Waves meant to him: “Its a great opportunity and Its something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time. Finally being able to do it is very exciting”

https://chokechain.bandcamp.com/album/invoking-shadows

Morgue VVitch – Kansas based haunting terror synth from artist Tara Saavedra. A wispy tendril of vocals rises from the metallic cauldron of rising synth sounds. Bubbling percussion pops and crackles from this heady brew and brings the energy to life. I continue to be impressed by their sound, as well as the industry greats who see such promise in Tara and offer remixes for this first single. Names like Ghost Youth, Slighter, Caustic, Stoneburner. When great artists see your value it should be a sign to fans of the genre.

https://morguevvitch.bandcamp.com/

The festival has a long journey ahead. Save some energy. Get a Lou Malnati’s pizza to build a carb base for the energy you will need ahead. Check in with us tomorrow for more tips and tricks for Fridays stacked lineup.

Sounds and Shadows Podcast #11 with Curse Mackey Featuring Beauty in Chaos

Exciting new podcast with Curse Mackey of (Evil Mothers) (Pigface) (Pig) (Sine) where we discuss his solo sonic sculpture “Instant Exorcism”. Getting an in depth look into his creative process, his amazing tour with Clan of Xymox, Twin Tribes, Bellwether Syndicate, and Specters. As well as parenting wins like raising him on the mothers milk of William Burroughs. As always I will link all the bands we discussed below.

https://cursemackeyngp.bandcamp.com/album/instant-exorcism

https://sineofficial.bandcamp.com/

Rona Rougeheart
Steven Seibold