Comprising one half of those terrible, awful, Drug Honkey bastards, KLLU have come to utterly harsh your mellow, piss on your parade and generally convince you that the inside of your head is haunted by means of judiciously applied bowel-shuddering bass, bone-crunching slow-mo beats, a whole lot of flesh-creeping spaced-out atmosphere and quite possibly a bag containing spiders and a suspicious type of powdery substance that the duo of P. Gillis and A.Smith proceed to rub into your eyes, ears and gums, spiders and all.
Taking the spectral deep-space dub explorations of Scorn, circa Colossus and Evanescence, as a launchpad, the deadly duo proceed to ramp up the bass to dubstep proportions and let loose those spiders across the mixing desk, their myriad scrabbling legs making a patina of tiny glitches that scatter across the entirety of UpSideDownCross, twinkling and twitching like tiny stars in the ink-black expanse of night.
‘Approach’ shudders into being with thick slabs of electronic bass throbbing away atop spectral ambience and kick drum punching through like a blunt instrument through a wall of molasses before being joined by suitably warped, yet subtle, Frithian guitar twang, presumably from guest performer Eraldo Bernocchi – no stranger to the world of Scorn himself, having appeared on the later recording Whine – the whole of which is shot through with scattershot percussive and electronic flickers and twitches.
‘Dead, Like Me’ opens up the spaces between the beats by having the bass adopt a more ‘depthcharging’ role, rolling and pitching slowly between echoing snare cracks and delicate guitarlines that evoke both rain and the beautifully percussive sound of the Fender Rhodes, all still smothered in that whirring, creaking otherworldly soup of sounds.
‘Keep Us Forever’ picks up the pace, ever so slightly, throbbing, undulating bass and whipcrack snare entwined with sine-wave-like synth, occasionally cutting out completely like a faulty machine, and ‘Beliefs In Hate’ throbs and bubbles in, dragging a sinister pitch-black ambience in its wake, driven by swells of thick, dark bass synth, suffused with clouds of swarming glitch and electronically mangled voices, screams of horror pitch-bent and time-stretched into unrecognisable form.
The darkness that began to seep through in earnest with ‘Keep Us Forever’ finds its logical conclusion in the haunted, haunting gulfs of ‘Impossible Dark’. The aural equivalent of the deadly ‘Raptures Of The Deep’, brought about by oxygen sickness, the crushing depth of the night-dark bottom of the deepest ocean or the infinite black of deepest space is summoned via chittering, croaking, scratching audio mange, severely compressed sound, more felt than heard, and seemingly random bursts of echo-laden synth that rise like dying breaths from a suffocating stranded deep explorer. Crushing, harrowing and fully hallucinogenic.
Not content with unnerving you via the deranged fuckery of Drug Honkey, Gillis and Smith have found with KLLU yet another way of making you really not want to listen to their music with your back to the door.
After listening to UpsideDownCrossRoads repeatedly, you can be pretty damn sure I’ll be sleeping with one eye open……in a pool of my own night-sweat. Forever.
Label: Self Released
Scribed by: Paul Robertson