Music Reviews



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Artist: ALL HAIL THE TRANSCENDING GHOST
Title: All Hail The Transcending Ghost
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring Records (@)
Rated: *****
All Hail The Transcending Ghost is a collaboration project between Henrik Nordvargr Björkk (MZ.412, Toroidh, Folkstorm etc) and Tim Bertilsson (Fear Falls Burning, Switchblade). The first is in charge of producing industrial drones and haunting atmosphere and the second gentleman, with his guitar, produces few melodic lines here and there and tons of guitar drones. The whole album is permeated by an hallucinated atmosphere where cinematic vocal samples (like on track 4) help giving birth to a sense of sickness. Like a soundtrack most of the tracks are focused on the effect they have to create. There's a certain feeling of progression and a sense of growing pain that increase with the listening of ALL HAIL THE TRANSCENDING GHOSTS. Industrial music and drones rarely worked this way being able to create such a convincing atmosphere.
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Artist: SPLINTERSKIN (@)
Title: Wayward Souls
Format: CD
Label: Cold Spring Records (@)
Rated: *****
Recorded in Oregon, Ohio, from Autumn 2006 to Autumn 2008 Splinterskin's debut album WAYWARD SOULS bring to the attention of dark folk music lovers a new storyteller. The mysterious solo project of Saint John with the seventeen songs of the album is able to create a personal world made of creeping tales whispered into your ears with the aid of a classic guitar and a violin here and there (like on the opening tune "Chanting bells call shadows" or on "The thing that wasn't). What pop out immediately when you hold in your hands the CD is the beautiful booklet which with its great paintings/graphics it's making of Splinterskin a sort of multimedia project headed by a bearded giant with eyes on fire. If you are keen to modern dark folk music prepare yourself to something different from the Odin tales or the medieval influences, because WAYWARD SOULS sounds like a Poe tale sung by a leper. "Calmly, it said to me, through the darkened hallway in my home. I heard a rhythm of tapping, or maybe a scraping in my walls. A crackling of a throat perhaps, from my closet behind my hats, could it be? Birds bending a branch, my cat in the attic, or maybe the leaves. But my mind starts to... shiver, like my bones in the winter" (from "Something in the walls").