Aaron Spectre – “Extraterrestrial / Create The Future / The Quickening”

“a trilogy of new work, exploring themes of disinfo dystopia, pushback & new ways, imagination & its companions. intricate drum work as always. drum & bass / jungle / chiptune / noise. gameboy dmg breaks pushed to the limits of sampling. a bit of beautiful textures. analog glitch, digital distribution for quickness.”

That’s the description of the new joint by Aaron Spectre from his website. He probably wrote it. It’s the kind of thing that would make me listen to the accompanying release no matter who wrote it. The fact that Aaron Spectre wrote it – or, at least, it appears on his website in relation to his music – only made me want to to listen to it even more. So I did.

When those breaks samples are solo, you can really hear that Gameboy tone, as you listen to them behind everything else after first identifying them on their own they begin to take on a new and unique voice they’ve not had previous to this release. And more than their individual hits and loops being wonderfully sampleable, I think Aaron Spectre paid special attention to the overall tone of the breaks samples used here, and went deep with them based on that.

This is the Aaron Spectre I love. Drumcorps is a cool project that I fully respect and do enjoy. But this, this is why I started listening to Aaron Spectre – 10 or 12 years ago! – in the first place. Incredible attention to audible details, Aaron Spectre is a true sound designer, the producer’s producer, and a brilliant-one-of-a-kind producer all in one.

Don’t let a chiptune sample turn you off, this thing sounds so damn lush, it’s crazy to know/realize there’s a buncha Gameboy breaks/samples going on inside most of the time. “Lo-fi” is the buzzword of the day, so think of it like that – but instead it’s gnarly ass junglecore that still kills soundbwoys.

The accompanying write-up, which I used to open up this post, in one place reads “exploring themes of disinfo dystopia, pushback & new ways, imagination & its companions”. Initially, some of the vocal samples and effects samples seemed rather randomized, but when I went back to this piece of the write-up – if you’re paying even a marginally larger portion of attention to these junglecore tunes at home or in the car than you normally would at the club or rave, you can definitely hear the “story” (still a stretch of a term, but I get it) through out the 3 EPs. It’s a little convoluted, I think – but I’ve done far worse for concepts and series release ideas, so I’ma shut my mouth now.

These 3 EPs are truly spectacular and must-owns for anyone into jungle, drum’n’bass, breakcore, junglecore, chiptunes, lo-fi music, lo-bit music, breakbeats, sampling, and the like. It never spends too much time in one realm, but it alternates between all the important ones when it comes to jungle-esque and related music – sweet low ends, nice and clever samples, some good percussion work, and decent levels – you get some party tunes, some heady tunes, some experimental stuff, and probably a couple you skipped and fall in love with later. Like, I skipped a couple of the more “skulltstep” and Drumcorps sounding stuff on first listen – second listen, they’re a couple of my favorite tunes on the release. A truly robust and varied sounding release that still remains one singular thing – that’s rare.

I also think there’s spectograms encoded to at least a couple of these tracks.

“The Quickening” write-up: “A glitchy record for dystopias now… for the first step in building the future, is to fully understand our present. Some heavy tunes, anchored together with a little story, shot on film over the past few years, and glitched with analog video gear.

Aaron Spectre brings heavy drums, over-the-top programming, guitars, & super low sub-bass into the fray. It’s as if the dark spirits conjured by previous innovations in electronics & heavy guitar music have come unmoored from their subculture origins, unleashed into the world above, bringing a message from the deep.”

“Create The Future” write-up: “🍄 80% chiptune, 20% noise 🍄

Made with Nintendo Gameboy DMG, synths, distortion pedals, and a sense of urgency.

An expedition to the limits of chiptune sampling, noise, heaviness, jungle music, and all things glitch. This sound intentionally left raw.”

“Extraterrestrial” write-up: “Is this the best EP in recorded history?”

Ancient astronaut theorists say… Yes!

And they suggest that further evidence may be found… by decrypting the signals hidden in the noise.

A journey into imagination and its close companions. Heavy breaks, mega sampling, beautiful textures, & harsh noise; that delicate balance of playful & serious. This four tune EP contains echoes of all of Aaron’s previous work – from the ambient & melodic textures on Lost Tracks, to a bit of Drumcorps guitar, and his signature intricate drum work – uniting all genres on spaceship Earth.


Aaron Spectre – “Extraterrestrial” on Bandcamp.

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