Introducing… Hartheim

Our Introducing... series focuses on artists who we think are worth shouting about. Here we have Mancunian symphonic post-punk outfit, Hartheim.

Posted on Feb 17th, 2014 in Features and Interviews, Hartheim / By Larry Day
Introducing… Hartheim Here at Bearded we aim to shed light on acts who don't necessarily have giant labels or muscley budgets waving banners behind them. This Introducing series will focus on artists who we think are great, regardless of how much hype surrounds them or where their origin story lays.

Name: Hartheim
Location: Manchester, UK
Genre: Post-punk/rock
Similar Artists: MONEY, Nadine Shah, I Like Trains
Contact: Soundcloud
Events: Who knows what'll happen next?

There are scant details surrounding one of Manchester's hottest fledgling acts, Hartheim. Save a Soundcloud page and a few blog posts, there's a minimal online presence, but what little there is points towards an exhilarating prospect.

The five-piece post-punk and/or rock act are a visual act (the band comprises plenty of designers, who work on the packaging and harrowing videos), concentrating on the hubbub enveloping their sonic milieu. They explain themselves a bit here: “Our name is derived from Hartheim Castle, one of the most contrasting historic buildings in modern history. It was built in the 1600s to be a purely beautiful Renaissance masterpiece. It was later turned into an asylum, and then a pre-Holocaust 'euthanasia centre'. We're massively interested in the juxtaposition of beauty and darkness, and the contradiction in it's timeline.”

Their debut offering is 'Yellow'. A ruthless examination of disease and addiction, the (almost) seven-minute opus shares similarities with legendary Northern post-rockers I Like Trains – hollow baritone, methodically jet atmospheres clogging the airwaves like tire-smoke, and a historical, grandiose, beautiful bleakness. It's an infinitely echoing elegy, choked with slightly dissonant bass and the wonderfully raw and emotive production Manchester brought to the world in the '80s via acts like Joy Division. It's a bitterly unforgiving, devastating listen – and bloody excellent to boot.

There's not too much to go on yet, but Hartheim are piquing interest left, right and centre with what's available so far. It appears as though the group are gearing up – with their strident aesthetic and confident style – to unveil something big this year. What that is may not be entirely obvious at this juncture, but it feels like an irreversible chain of events has been set in motion. A linchpin has been pulled, and all we can do is await the inevitable unknown unfold in greyscale glory.