Hypnocrates is the best new darkwave band nobody’s heard of

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I’ve been on the hunt for new music I missed earlier this year. My latest discovery is an absolutely thrilling debut album from a band called Hypnocrates.

Hypnocrates released Modern Nightmares in April. You can hear it on Bandcamp and Spotify.

What a find. The aptly named Modern Nightmares is a deftly blended brew of post-punk genres that somehow infuses gothic grandeur with indie-pop melodies, deep house beats, and even trap samples. Thematically, it covers spooky topics like ghosts and witchcraft, patched together by human struggle. I’m kind of in awe.

The album delivers dramatic new discoveries upon every listen, and I’m hard-pressed to pick a favorite track. “Dark Creatures” has a catchy chorus that makes it the immediate standout. “Underwater” is an energetic dance cut driven by a swirling synthline, followed by another club-friendly track called “Secret Society” that feels like a ’90s Moby mix mashed up with a horror movie soundtrack. Final track “Planet Earth” lowers the temper with a somber tone and a compelling sample that pulsates in and out of the song.

The 12 tracks on Modern Nightmares were recorded and released once per month in 2019. Hypnocrates has released two music videos to accompany the songs “Crows” and “Dark Creatures.” You can watch those videos below.

Hypnocrates was formed by singer/songwriter Vadym Markov in 2013 in Oslo, Norway. He self-released four EPs before releasing his first full-length on Brazil’s Wave Records.

Right now, Hypnocrates has just 257 followers on Facebook, and his latest video has less than 100 views. So he hasn’t really infiltrated the scene yet. This is an artist that deserves to be taken seriously.

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