Tag Archives: Perturbator

Biggest Ups: Over 40 Artists Share Their Favorite Albums of 2017


Bandcamp artists pick their favorite albums of the year.

One of the features on Bandcamp Daily that generates the greatest amount of enthusiasm is Big Ups. The concept is simple: we ask artists who used Bandcamp to recommend their favorite Bandcamp discoveries. So, in honor of our Best of 2017 coverage, we decided to take Big Ups and super-size it. Here, more than 40 artists to tell us their favorite albums of the year.

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Perturbator on “New Model,” His Surprise New EP Available Today


Photo by Metastazis.

If we could add one name to our lengthy, but by no means comprehensive, synthwave list from last year, it’d be Perturbator. While elements of the Stranger Things-era have crept into James Kent’s compositions over the past five years, his plans for the project are far more ambitious than any mere novelty act or nostalgia trip. In fact, they venture further out into left-field with each passing LP, as leathered-up electro and EBM loops give way to gritty techno grooves and beats that are blown into a million pieces.

“Music is the ultimate form of expression,” Kent explains over email. “It should never ever feel restrictive. People who are looking for ‘80s nostalgia can already find it everywhere. There are blogs dedicated to promoting this type of music and posting stuff that sounds like that every day.”

Some of those outlets—the more regressive ones, at least—may be a little mortified by Kent’s latest EP, New Model. True to its title, it’s a welcome reboot of Perturbator’s robust sound, starting with its creepy lead single “Vantablack”. With the help of OddZoo singer “Jim” (see also: the deep Carpenter Brut cut “Anarchy Road”), Kent appears to be telling the tale of a lecherous robot that’d like to “play with my shiny stainless blade and stroke your marble skin.” It’s very Nine Inch Nails-meets-Vangelis, and it’s deeply unsettling.

Then there’s “God Complex,” a nine-and-a-half-minute descent into Perturbator’s own personal hell, that takes the jagged melodies of Justice on dark-ambient detours, and culminates in a pulse-quickening climax that offers a hint of Kent’s previous life as a metal musician. “I got to a point where I realized that I’ve said everything I had to say in this department,” Kent says. “Now, I’m moving forward, discovering new sounds, techniques, textures, and ways of presenting my music to others.”

In the following exclusive conversation, Kent gives a taste of what that means for Perturbator’s past, present, and once-uncertain future.

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