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Nightmare Fuel / Aphex Twin

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Aphex Twin: Strange, brilliant, and a master of scaring the hell out of people.

  • Aphex's collaborations with video artist Chris Cunningham made some of the most (in)famous examples of Nightmare Fuel in music video history.
    • Come to Daddy (depicted in the page image) was once described by Dave Grohl as "the most terrifying music video ever." In the video, a group of children, each one of their faces replaced by the identical grinning visage of Richard D. James, terrorizes a desolate industrial wasteland whilst a distorted face (belonging to James) on a TV howls about how he wants your soul. The most memorable aspect of the video, however, has to be the tall, white, skinny, demonic thing that crawls out of the TV at the song's climax and screams in an old lady's face.
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    • Rubber Johnny — A short film created by Cunningham over three years scored by Aphex that stars a deformed teenager in a wheelchair who can twist his body to an inhuman degree. Think Eraserhead set to a rave track, and know that it's not the page image of the music subpage of Nightmare Fuel for no reason.
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    • Windowlicker isn't quite as scary as "Come to Daddy", but it's still freaky in its own way. In probably one of the biggest examples of Fan Disservice in music video history, the video is full of scantily-clad women...that all have Richard's smiling face pasted onto them. Plus there's another woman in the video who is horrifically ugly with a deformed, bucktoothed face that inspired an equally eerie sketch by H. R. Giger.
      • Bennett the Sage was so creeped out by the video that he placed it at #1 on his list of the Top 10 WTF Music Videos:
      Hey, wanna never sleep again? Too late!
  • Gwarek2 off of Drukqs is highly unsettling, and was used in the credits of Rubber Johnny to make an already eerie shot outside a window gazing into a barely-lit night even creepier.
  • The intro to Milkman is a garbled recording of a man speaking in what sounds like a foriegn language. It turns out it's English, but run through a Ring Modulator to make it unintelligible. Until one Youtuber decoded it. (Warning: NSFW and Nausea Fuel, with a side of Cluster F-Bomb.)
    It popped out like a motherfucker; you should have seen the git. He screamed and he winced and his eyeball it... I remember I was, like, fucking his eye up. And I, I thought, Shit, I'd fucking better not press too hard with my fucking two-inch hard cock.' So it quivered on it, it dripped down my fucking cock. and I thought, That's good, and I swear to myself, That's fucking good.
  • Equation has become more well-known for its Easter egg than the actual music. Near the end of the song, the music is taken over by a series of non-musical sweeps of noise. Feed that noise through a logarithmic spectrogram, and you get this distorted image of a smiling Richard, fittingly nicknamed the "Demon Face".
    • What's even weirder is amidst the general atmosphere of inhuman noise, at around the 5:24 mark—right before the Demon Face appears—there's a sound that's eerily similar to a little girl moaning.
  • Selected Ambient Works Volume II; 50% of it is sheer Sweet Dreams Fuel, but we can't say the same about the other half. It's rarely outwardly scary, but it fits creepy to a T that will drive you insane.
    • Radiator, a disjointed, almost jaunty tune that genuinely does feel like it belongs in the soundtrack of some prestige psychological thriller. It somehow perfectly encapsulates the feeling of being watched and stalked. Did we mention this is only the second track on the album? It is thankfully followed by the Sweet Dreams Fuel that is "Rhubarb".
    • White Blur 1, an unsettling haphazard mishmash of bell noises, creepy rumbling, and reverberating vocal samples. Thank god it's only 3 minutes as opposed to the usual 5-8.
    • White Blur 2 takes this Up to Eleven, consisting of nothing but a looped psychedelic riff interspersed by a creepy distorted laugh and occasional muted whispers, it keeps going like this for 11 minutes. You could've stuck it in a Yume Nikki level and nobody would be able to tell the difference.
    • Hankie takes that creepiness of tracks like Spots, mentioned below, and takes a bigger step further with atonal, almost screechy synth strings and a mood that feels like a poltergeist exorcism Gone Horribly Wrong.
    • Grey Stripe is a piece that starts out with piercing wind sounding like it's blowing across a desolate wasteland, while punctuated with ghostly wails and moans. Then the wails become more piercing, and are joined by odd sci-fi sound effects, and then metal crashing and shrieks take over. A noise that sounds like a very distorted chainsaw comes in, and the track ends on beeping sci-fi noises. It's a mix of sounds that you'd expect coming from a haunted house or in an old-sci fi/horror movie.
    • Window Sill somehow manages to be the musical equivalent of Uncanny Valley, being subtly-off and unnerving.
    • Many of the tracks are quite akin to something out of Silent Hill. Case in point, Grass.
    • Interestingly, most of the creepy tracks are the ones related to nature; Grass, Mould, Tree...
    • Stone In Focus, which is focused around bass-heavy rumbling and surprisingly tonal synth wash while featuring a clock's ticking noises playing in the background and some creepy synth melodies throughout the entire track. It's like a darker cousin to Rhubarb, and it sounds like "floating out in deep space without any way to return home".
    • Spots is a creepy Drone of Dread with some voices heard in the background. Creepy by itself, but then you find out what Word of God says those voices are.
    "Someone I used to know, you know who you are, worked as a cleaner in a police station and kindly pinched me a police interview tape. It was with a woman who murdered her husband, it's the background audio in this track."
    • Several unreleased Selected Ambient Works Volume II tracks:
  • Come On You Slags has an exceptionally creepy, anxious main melody.
  • Gwely Mernans, a Drukqs track full of dark rumbling noises and atonal piano pads playing in the background. What's even more creepy about it, beyond it giving off this overwhelming sense of dread and paranoia, is that its title is Cornish for "death bed".
  • 13 Barbarella On Microdots is pretty unsettling, which sounds like the auditory equivalent of running away from a killer armed with an axe in a dark forest, ready to chop you down to pieces.
  • Any fear for the covers of ...I Care Because You Do or Richard D. James Album?
  • This promo video for 26 Mixes for Cash. It's completely silent and features a series of pictures of Richard with the face of each picture morphing into the next, and it gets more disturbing towards the end.
  • At some point, Richard was commissioned to write a song for a Virgin Airlines commercial, and he responded with Aphex Airlines, 6 minutes of abrasive noise. While he likened it to the sound of a jet engine during takeoff, Virgin rejected it on the grounds of it sounding like a plane crash.


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