In a world overrun with synthesizer players angling to be the next John Carpenter, Claudio Simonetti (of Goblin), or Bernard Szajner, few can genuinely claim to approach those legends' infernal, suspenseful sound worlds. One such musician who can, however, is Seattle's Meridian Arc (aka Andrew Crawshaw). His time spent drumming for the heavy psychedelic rock band Terminal Fuzz Terror and doom-folk ensemble A Story of Rats hasn't prepared the world for the fantastically dark analog-synth journeys he embarks upon in Aphantasia. But Crawshaw's made this unusual transition with impressive authority. You know music in this vein is great when you start to envision your own outlandish, horrific scenarios for it, as you will do for each of Aphantasia's 11 marrow-chilling tracks. This is Meridian Arc's most vivd and varied expression of his dystopian vision to date. As John Cale sang back in 1974, “Fear is a man's best friend,” and Meridian Arc's music offers many opportunities to test his theory.