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Preview: Pharmakon at Siberia 

Noah Bonaparte Pais on the experimental noise artist performing Feb. 4.

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Head to the website of Sacred Bones Records ( to dig deeper into Pharmakon and you're greeted by a banner for John Carpenter's upcoming Lost Themes. All due respect to the horror filmmaker and soundtrack mood master, but after encountering Bestial Burden — Margaret Chardiet's second truly terrifying LP for Sacred Bones in as many years — Carpenter's new set of throbbing synths is what you'll put on for reassurance that Michael Myers isn't wielding a kitchen knife in your closet. The fear Pharmakon summons has little to do with external forces — rather, Chardiet's unclassifiable music suggests, it's what's within, clawing to get out, that we should be afraid of. Her album art for Bestial Burden and 2013 debut Abandon function as both content warnings and Cronenbergian installation companions: the latter, a young girl, slackly holding a bunch of flowers, crawling with maggots; the former, another female torso, this time bedecked with raw organ meat, as if her curled fingers (replete with chicken-talon press-ons like a Valkyrie Freddy Krueger) had splayed open her own chest. A general tenet of holistic medicine is that the body, working in unison with the mind and spirit, wants to heal itself, but Chardiet has a different idea, one borne out in the murderous feedback and sickly bodily responses (gasps, chokes, laughter, shrieks) that serve as her musical/surgical instruments: Our selves are out to get us. Note to John Carpenter and the rest: There is no scarier notion. Hide, Nightland, Proud/Father, Fri(g)id and M. Bevis open. Tickets $8.

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