Premiere: Take a trip through South Africa’s instrumental rock scene with ‘Instro Monsters’

South Africa has a rich history of instrumental music. Unfortunately, most of it has gone largely undocumented and is subsequently unknown in contemporary audiences, which is why Instro Monsters, a new compilation of South African instrumental bands, is such an important piece of musical documentation.

Compiled by Cale Waddacor, Instro Monsters comprises 16 tracks of local instrumental bands and acts, predominantly in the field of rock.

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“Instrumental music is somewhat overlooked and with this compilation one will get to hear how truly talented these musicians are,” explains Cale on the release. “From the monstrous riffs of Savage Lucy and Poverty of Ideals to the melodic sways of Bateleur and Eyes Like Mirrors, Instro Monsters takes one on a sonic journey through post-rock, prog, math, psych, metal and more.”

As a drummer for Jo’burg-based surf-rock group The Moths, Cale’s a muso himself and has also grown up with the sounds of many of the bands featured on the compilation. It’s this intimacy and personal knowledge of SA’s instrumental music that results in such an expertly curated compilation. In its entirety, Instro Monsters is as much a comprehensive guide to SA instrumental music as it is a slice of musical history.

“It was an honor to group all these incredible musicians on a compilation for the first time and share it with both old and new listeners. Many of these bands are not around anymore so it also serves as a tribute. It‘s definitely brought about a feeling of nostalgia thinking about all the past shows, dancing, head sways, beer drinking and sonic enrichment. I am forever grateful for growing up with these artists.”

And it’s not all old stuff either. In the mix you’ll find a new and original track by STRAGE, and many of the acts featured here are set to bring out new releases and side projects in the near future.  

“I really think people are in for a treat and that some may be caught off-guard by the talent that lies within Instro Monsters,” says Cale. I look forward to uncovering more South African instrumental acts in the future.”

Download the full compilation with accompanying pdf booklet over here and head over to the Instro Monsters website for future releases. 

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