Miserable old fool that I am, I’m not that big on ‘comedy’ music of any kind, but specifically metal; There are enough people outside of the scene taking the mickey out of it without metalheads doing it too, and I always find that when the comedy inevitably wears off after a couple of listens you’re generally left with some pretty low-quality music in it’s stead (qv GWAR, Steel Panther, Green Jelly, Bad News et al)…
So when Sentinel Daily editor Scott Adams passed me the new Ghostblood album for review purposes, I wasn’t particularly enthused, let me tell you. A quick look at the band’s Facebook page confirmed they might be a bit ‘wacky’, despite having a rather cool new T-shirt design on offer. Early signs weren’t good.
And then I pressed play.
My word, all misgivings fly out of the window as soon as you start listening to frankly superb tracks like Bludgeoned by Bone, B.C. (The Wrath of Garg). And yes, that title is awful. But the music- a thrilling mix of crossover with death metal vocals that might have you thinking of names like The Accüsed – is utterly compelling, in a horrific kinda way.
The band are a trio, which means there’s nowhere to hide a laggardly musician in the ranks, but luckily all three of them are top notch players which means not a note is wasted throughout the album’s half-hour duration. Singer Adam is also a staggeringly good bassist, whilst lead guitarist Arlo runs a neat line in Wolf Hoffmann-styled classically-influenced solos. And of course drummer Dave resembles nothing so much as a human battering ram at the back, powering everything along with piston-like calf muscles.
Smokin’ Brains is a scorcher of a track, bringing an almost neo-classical feel to it’s thrash roots, the result of which, remarkably, would have the billies raving at your local psychobilly club, if such things exist where you live.
Talking of psychobilly, which we were, Psychoborg is the next track up and continues that feel – maybe in the super-fast, uber-trebly bass sound? I don’t know for sure, as a great Minnesotan once said. All I know is it’s bloody brilliant. Final track Worship the Ghost is a corker too, rounding out the album in euphoric fashion.
If you only buy one savage, crossover-inflected gore metal album this month make it this one. You will not be disappointed, I promise.
Honey, I Raised the Dead is released on April 20th. Head over to the Ghostblood Bandcamp page and secure a copy now!