Today’s New Noise: It’s Bandcamp Friday, May 3

What’s up, rockers? April showers bring May flowers and a new Bandcamp Friday! What is Bandcamp Friday, you ask? Bandcamp Friday is the first Friday of every month where Bandcamp waives their normal fee so that more money goes directly to the artist. That means it’s the best day of the month for you to support independent artists. Here’s just a small sampling of some of the artists you can support today when your money goes even farther.

Blade of Phanes

Blade of Phanes is a blackened metalcore band out of Orlando, Florida. They’ve got a new album that drops today called Absence of Light and you can stream it on Bandcamp.

Blade of Phanes prides themselves on addressing issues of oppressed underdogs, taking on such heady topics as police brutality, homophobia, and transphobia. It’s a welcome change from metalcore bands that just want to sing vague lyrics about dying and death. Opening track “Harbinger” starts out slowly with feedback and drums until the guitars come in and the deep, grumbling vocals enter like an earthquake. The album’s title track is an all-out assault of musical violence with its pummeling drums and ferociously snarled vocals.

“Protect and Serve” is a scathing indictment of the police set to the tune of an apocalyptic, extreme metal soundtrack. “9th Circle,” with its pulse-pounding beat, continues the brutal assault of this album in style. “Tide of Loathing” and “Sentenced” are a pair of anti-queerphobia anthems that punch you in the face with the same intensity as the rest of the album. Finally, closing track “Rakuyo,” which features a guest appearance from Nat Lacuna, is almost slow compared to the rest of the album, but still a blisteringly fast track by any other standard. This is about as extreme as music can get, and extra points for using that music to address such important topical issues.

Follow Blade of Phanes on Twitter for future updates.

Slowenya

Slowenya are an alt-doom trio from Turku, Finland. We featured them almost exactly a year ago when they released a two-song single, but now they’ve expanded that single into a full-length album called The Wild Inevitable which is streaming on Bandcamp.

Opening track “The Perfect Undesirable” is a long, slow doom track that almost enters into the realm of religious chanting with its careful rhythm and haunting group vocals. “Angel Raised Wolves” takes on a grungy sound that goes through a number of peaks and valleys to becomes an epic doom track. “Classic Romantic Dramatic” follows that tradition with Layne Staley-esque vocals and melodies in a thundering doom track.

The hilariously titled “Terminal Eclipse of the Heart” is, again, more of a chant than a doom track, as the group vocals raise up to the heavens in what feels like a surprisingly upbeat track for a doom trio. Closing track “The Heat Burns the Grief” is a slow, gnashing track that finds a weird middle-ground between doom and shoegaze, presenting a wall of fuzzy sound with a deep, thundering bass. This band is its own, very unique brand of doom, and they pull it off very well.

Follow Slowenya on Instagram for future updates.

Shock the Algorithm

Shock the Algorithm is a one-man punk band from Athens, Greece. The project recently put out a new album called Rock and Roll Kills and it’s streaming on Bandcamp.

The album opens on its own title track, which is a rollicking melodic punk track with some really fierce metal guitar solos but an absolutely punk rock attitude. Then “Butterfingers” comes in with a searingly fast skate punk drumbeat and a snot-nosed, tongue-in-cheek vocal delivery. “Death is the Enemy” brings back in the metal edge to a soaringly melodic punk tune. Then “No Tomorrow” opens on a synth being played like an organ before launching into some more skate punk bordering on hardcore.

“You Can’t Go Wrong” takes on a more upbeat, almost pop-punk tone and melody while still keeping that distorted punk edge. “Heaven’s Above?” is similarly hooky, but also features some seriously fun guitar riffs. “Like We Used To” takes a surprising left-turn by switching to jangle pop, but the artist manages to find melodies that are just as memorable as anything else on the album. “Ramona” is a great love anthem that borders on Ramonescore with its simple riffs and classic pop melodies.

The brief “You’re So Strange to Me” relies almost solely on its infectious drumbeat and catchy vocals, with the guitar coming in as almost an afterthought. “The Devil is a Bottle” brings back that metal edge in a truly thundering hard rocker of a track. “Wings on a Wagon” is the first track produced by this project and was written as a tribute to the victims of the tragic Tempi train incident in Greece in February of 2023, and it manages to pay proper respects while still rocking as hard as possible. The whole thing ends on a quirky little outro called “¡Nos Vemos Pronto!” which is hard to categorize by genre but definitely isn’t punk, but rather a finger-picked guitar experiment. Strangely, that’s the perfect way to end this eclectic collection of the best of punk’s subgenres.

Follow Shock the Algorithm on TikTok for future updates.

There are plenty more bands to check out and support this Bandcamp Friday. Please do your part to support independent artists like these.

Photo courtesy of Shock the Algorithm

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