Label: Black Lion Records
Date: March 26th, 2021
I’ve got myself a newcomer again. From England this time. As it has become a custom these days, Ghosts Of Atlantis are debuting with a full length straight away. And released on quite a serious label. No need for a demo, promo or similar “test” release. These are almost a thing of the past. Not to sound like a nostalgic grandpa, but I do miss seeing bands strive to formulate their sound over a couple of demos.
Music industry has changed and there’s no use in crying about “the good old days”. Now, I have led with this introduction precisely because this quintet uses a whole lot of ingredients in their musical mixture. Back in the day it took a long time and utter dedication to come up with such sonic combinations. That’s where the demos came in, as they gave an opportunity to fix all the glitches and come to a concrete creative solutions.
Don’t get me wrong, this record seems to be completely thought through. Even if the band is just two years old, their debut album offers a very homogenous cocktail of a vast array of influences. Previous experience must have been involved, as the gathering of various genres in one place is executed maturely, leaving no room for wandering particles.
The subject of this review is comprised of a fairly modern groove metal structure. Built upon it, you will find symphonic, gothic black metal, as presented by Cradle Of Filth in their more recent outputs. However, that is not all. Scandinavian sounding, melodic death metal additions are obvious throughout. Think Children Of Bodom. Hence, abundance of melodies, laid on top of a rock solid, heavy grooving and embellished by symphonic keyboard passages. As this is clearly not a release for the narrow minded metal purists, there is no need for warnings about the use of those symphonic pieces. Still, there is a need to point out that those were very skillfully used. At times, they take the lead in the tracks. Other times they are laden as background, so as to build up on the existing foundation and give it a higher sonic impact. Another show of creative skill is built into the vocals. They are used as yet another instrument. Sounds like a cliché, but this time it is actually true. Different types of voices (two members of the band handle the vocals) interchange throughout the whole album following the storyline as within a musical theater piece.
Actually, the whole album seems to be fit for musical theater. Most definitely, it is not an easy listening. However, it flows without a slightest slip. The listener is guided through numerous differing sections that slide one into another perfectly. You might just let go and let it guide you through, losing your focus on details. That is one way to go. Otherwise, you might just be surprised by the sheer scale of these compositions, by simply focusing on what is right in front of you as much as on what is seemingly hidden from plain sight, but still plays a very important role. Ghosts Of Atlantis displays it all, gives you options, takes you on an epic journey, or simply lets you go on one of your own. A band to look out for.