- "The mind-curdling cacophony of the battlefield! Shape it, savour it, add to it until your senses shake and your minds quiver with deafening bliss!"
- — Anonymous Noise Marine of Slaanesh
Noise Marines are Chaos Space Marine foot soldiers deeply dedicated to the Chaos God Slaanesh who are most commonly found in the Emperor's Children Traitor Legion, but also in other Slaanesh-devoted Chaos Space Marine warbands such as the Flawless Host. Their trademark is the use of devastating sonic weaponry that confuses and demoralizes enemy forces in a wild show of “deafeningly loud, psycho-sonically and pyrotechnically explosive attacks."
The first creation of the Noise Marines goes back to the days immediately preceding the Horus Heresy. The Noise Marines' name comes from their preference for weapons that use concentrated sound and sonic waves: the Sonic Blaster - outwardly resembling a Bolter - produced discordant blasts of sound; the Blastmaster - a rifle-like weapon that produces different sonic frequencies that overpower senses and can even destroy flesh; and the Doom Siren, a loudspeaker surgically melded into the Chaos Space Marine's body that enhances his own screams into violent torrents of pure sonic force that can knock even the largest enemy off his feet. All of this sonic weaponry is descended from the musical instruments invented by the famed composer Bequa Kynska of Terra, who accompanied the Emperor's Children's 28th Expeditionary Fleet as a Remembrancer aboard the Battle Barge Pride of the Emperor during the Great Crusade. Kynska was a jaded musician always in search of further sensations to create more exhilarating and all-encompassing music, which made her an easy target for Slaaneshi corruption. After Kynska accompanied many of the 28th Expedition's Remembrancers to the temple dedicated to Slaanesh on the xenos world of Laeran, she was touched by the Chaotic corruption of that foul place and slowly sought to create the ultimate orchestral piece that she believed could capture the wondrous sounds she had heard within the Laer temple. Her ultimate masterpiece was a symphony she named the Maraviglia and which she performed for Fulgrim and all the assembled Astartes of the Emperor's Children and their support personnel within the Remebrancers' lounge called La Fenice aboard the Pride of the Emperor. To recreate the sounds she had heard, Kynska created new musical instruments whose sonic powers could also be used for destruction when employed by an individual already corrupted by Slaanesh. As the Maraviglia began, the cachophony of sound unleashed by these instruments acted as a ritual that opened a link between realspace and the Warp and allowed the power of Slaanesh to directly touch the audience. During the "performance" it was noted that the musical instruments were able to produce effects variously disorienting, stimulating and downright murderous.
Chaotic mutations ran rampant through the audience and Astartes and humans alike were so overwhelmed by sensation and uncontrollable emotions that they unleashed an orgy of both sensual hedonism and the most base forms of murder upon one another. Ultimately, the music summoned five Lesser Daemons of Slaanesh known as Daemonettes from the Warp who possessed the bodies of Kynska and several of her singers and joined in the slaughter. During this part of the concert, several Emperor's Children Astartes left their seats and took up the instruments to try and keep the Chaotic music playing and in the course of their untrained fumblings with the instruments discovered that they could unleash waves of destructive sonic power filled with the strength of Chaos. When the Emperor's Children engaged the Imperial Loyalists during the Drop Site Massacre on Istvaan V, some Emperor's Children Space Marines took to the field armed with these modified sonic weapons, becoming the first Noise Marines. The Noise Marines present in the III Legion soon organised themselves into a unit known as the Kakophoni which was under the command of the Legion's First Captain Julius Kaesoron. After the Heresy, the early Noise Marines took their deviant behaviour to a new level through their dedication to their patron Chaos God and over the years of bloody warfare with the Imperium have honed their bodies to possess such extreme sensory perception that nothing can stir their emotions other than the din of battle and the screams of the dying.
Regardless of the warband or Traitor Legion they belong to, Noise Marines wear Power Armour painted in all manner of striking and bold colours. Pinks, blacks and purples are used predominantly in bizarre patterns all over the armour’s legs, arms, gauntlets, helmet and shoulder plates. Their senses are so distorted that only the most extravagant shades and patterns register as pleasing. Noise Marines are also prone to displays of extremely grotesque mutations or surgical alterations, which are considered "gifts" of Slaanesh and are very common amongst all Slaaneshi devotees.
Sonic WeaponryThe Noise Marines of Slaanesh are warriors whose senses are jaded and dulled by centuries of hedonistic excess. Only the most extreme sensations stir them, hence their use of sonic weaponry. The louder and more discordant the noise, the more extreme the emotional reaction provoked in the Noise Marine. Sonic weapons use sonic waves to inflict deafeningly loud, psycho-sonically and pyrotechnically explosive results upon their victims.
- Sonic Blaster - The Sonic Blaster is a Chaos Space Marine sonic weapon used by the Noise Marines. It unleashes waves of crippling and distorted harmonics to rip targets apart. Many Noise Marines equipped with such weapons use them with manic intensity. They run up and down through the various chords and sliding scales so that these devices perpetually howl with a mixture of agony and ecstasy.
- Doom Siren - The Doom Siren is a Chaos Space Marine sonic weapon used by Noise Marines. The device is made up primarily of an arrangement of pipes and tubes that connects to a Power Armour helmet and magnifies the bearer’s war cries and howls of ecstatic pleasure into a manic shockwave of destruction. The Doom Siren mounts onto the bearer’s shoulders, leaving both of the bearer’s hands free to carry other weapons or perform other tasks.
- Blastmaster - The Blastmaster is a Chaos Space Marine sonic weapon used by the Noise Marines. It produces a throbbing bass note which is strong enough to burst eyeballs and rupture organs. At different frequencies the weapon can produce different effects, either harming individuals with a varying frequency or destroying an entire area with a single pulsing frequency.
- Black Crusade: Core Rulebook (RPG), pp. 160-161
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (4th Edition), p. 39
- Codex: Chaos Space Marines (3rd Edition, Revised Codex)
- Index Astartes I, "Children of the Emperor - The Emperor's Children Space Marine Legion"
- White Dwarf 230 (US), "Bitter and Twisted - Chaos Space Marines"
- Fulgrim (Novel) by Graham McNeill
- Angel Exterminatus (Novel) by Graham McNeill