Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Album Review : Soul Eater - Ghostone 7*

For Fans Of : ManAtArms, Coheed & Cambria, Dream Theatre

Ghostone are a modern progressive rock/metal band from France, Soul Eater is their debut release and is available in advance of other releases from Emusic.

There is an interesting mix of stuff on the album, some fast and furious, some melodic and thoughtful, the band obviously place some importance on the juxtaposition of heavy and softer sections within their songs, the drum parts are complex and ever changing and the guitars writhe through the songs, here they are heavy dominating riffs, then they spin away into light rills and plucks. Whilst not every song is stunning, as a group of musicians Ghostone are talented and wear their prog credentials proudly.

Opening track Djihad Joe is a strong opening track, beginning with the sound of wind, the first vocals are a North African/Islamic accapella, then the wind blows them away and a military drumbeat picks up, more vocals are layered around the drums and the first guitar pickings begin to weave themselves into the song and it is almost three minutes into this 7 minute epic before you hear what is recognisably rock music.  It works very well and is a definite statement of intent from the band.

Some things that work less well are, sadly, for one, the title track which is a bit slow and sluggish, the vocals and guitar parts seem mismatched.  It would have benefited from faster, heavier guitars and more uplifted vocals, as it is, its a bit of a dirge.

Let's not worry too much though about what doesn't work on the album, because the bits that do rather make up for it.  People Vs President is a hectic, headlong, angry and questioning chant with one of the better chorus parts on the album.  Needles On My Skin opens with the heaviest riff on Soul Eater and has a good call and response (as does Government House) vocal and another good chorus.

The album closes with, in musical style at least, the partner piece to the opener. Screaming Monkeys is another 7 minute piece with alternating choral and screamed vocals and the time and rhythm changes that Ghostone employ throughout their music.

I started off this review giving the album 6 stars, but I have upgraded that to 7*, I have really enjoyed this album, it isn't quite a perfect slab of modern prog metal, but it is pleasingly challenging, and the more I listen to it, the more I am enjoying it.

Now, I think that Soul Eater may be a concept album / rock symphony, and whilst most of the songs are in English, some are in French, and my French language skills are rubbish.  I have written to singer Yann and so hope to be able to provide a band bio and further information soon.

1 comment:

  1. Listening.Sounding good. But don't confuse with another artist named ghostone on spotify like I did. That wasn't so good.