Belgium has given us some incredible music – from Amenra and Oathbreaker to Aborted and Leng Tch'e, the noise coming out of northern Europe right now is exceptional. But what about the underground? We caught up with Brutus on the way to a Monday morning journey to rehearsal to pick their top ten bands from below the surface.
"Astodan are a pretty new band with members of legendary Belgian bands like The Setup and Homer. If you are into instrumental post-rock then go check them out. Their first full length album will be released by Dunk Records, the label behind Belgian's awesome Dunk Festival – so you know it’s a good recommendation for sure!"
"This is the drummer of our favourite Belgian live band, Raketkanon. Born from a Raketkanon hiatus, drummer Pieter De Wilde lets out his deepest emotions and grooves all alone, but with a lot of emotion and energy. You have to see it to believe it."
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"If good friends play in good bands, it’s the best of both worlds. We did a split 10” vinyl with them and it was probably the coolest thing we've ever done. Don’t let their singer Tom scare you, he is the sweetest."
"When we're on tour, their album Hindrance is our favoUrite sing-along in the van. A cool and simple three-piece with awesome female vocals and a lot of personality. Our favourite track is Magnify Magnify – you can’t go wrong with catchy songs! Drummer Dieter is also A 3D wizard with his company Lion Beach who produced our latest video of Justice De Julia II.
"Onmens is a great guitar/electronic two-piece from Ghent. It’s like Aborted and Cannibal Corpse making a baby – but maybe even more brutal! Bert and Casper are killing it with just the two of them."
"Our favourite instrumental Belgian band. They’re often compared to And So I Watch You From Afar, Russian Circles and LCD Soundsystem, but we say they're Mantis – straight up. It's not easy to keep instrumental music fresh and energetic, but they nail it. Their debut album Magnolia came out earlier this year; make sure you check it out."
"Slow Crush are a heavy, gloomy, shoegaze band with heavy guitars and dreamy vocals. Members Jelle, Isa and Steven have their roots in cult, old-school hardcore bands like In Arms Reach and Justice, but this one is different. They got picked up quickly by Holy Roar Records."
"Just listen to the song The Point first, it's Iidie-punk-rock that tastes really good. Their drummer Ramses also sings in a band called Hypochristmutreefuzz."
"The finest thrash-metal from Antwerp! These guys are masters, keeping it real all the fucking time. There’s no compromise. We’ve played with them before and there was a strange incident involving an ambulance and a pretty dirty sofa... Good times! Be sure to check out their split with Iron Reagan."
"Wolvennest are currently on tour with Wolves In The Throne Room – both are awesome bands! Their live shows are a great experience. It's atmospheric post-rock if you want to put a label on it. If you like Chelsea Wolfe or Subrosa, just check them out live!"
Check out Brutus' new video for Justice De Julia II, taken from their debut album Burst.