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Ghost Iris – Comatose

Ghost Iris
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 11 April 2021, 9:55 AM

Since the release of their critically acclaimed album, “Apple of Discord,” GHOST IRIS have made a name for themselves with relentless touring throughout Europe, UK and Japan - with the likes of DREAM THEATER, JINJER, AFTER THE BURIAL, and SOEN. Gearing up for the release of their awaited fourth full length album, “Comatose,” GHOST IRIS are building upon the sound explored on their previous work. Set for release on May 7, the album contains ten new tracks.

“(3815935)” leads off the album. It’s a very short mood-setting instrumental, consisting mostly of harsh guitars and drums, with feedback in the background. It segues into “Desert Dread,” which features thick vocals, guitars, and drums, with some nice harmonic cleans in the chorus. The chaos is held in check with some of the melodies. “Paper Tiger” is up next. It opens with a furious sound…drums rattling your very soul. I love the bass work in the first verse as well. The vocals are unrelenting and some dissonant sound develops in the guitar work.

“Cult” opens with a full-on melodious attack. But it settles into darker tones fairly quickly thereafter, with throaty, angry vocals. Following the assault, the melodies come back to the forefront, with clean harmonic vocals and a nice melody line in the guitars. It finished strong and heavy. “Former Self” is another heavy and aggressive affair, with a dark opening riff and vocals that could scare you out of your own skin. Some clean vocals come in at the chorus, but are short lived. Just when you think the punishing sound is ever-present, a brief ambient passage comes in, and the two sounds meld towards the end.

“Coda” begins with some Djent tones…heavy guitar strikes and incensed vocals follow. But the chorus’s clean vocals temper some of the anger here. A heavy breakdown takes the song to completion. “Ebb Flow” opens with some lighter tones from clean guitars. The melancholy vocals in the first verse has a dreamy element to it. The clean vocals continue in the chorus, where the melodies really shine. “Cold Sweat” goes the opposite direction. It begins with pounding guitars and drums, with incensed vocals, but the clean vocals in the chorus soar high into the canopy. The guitars begin to thicken, then back off so that the melody can come through.

“Coma” begins with soft, ethereal clean guitars and some spoken words. What follows is absolute brutality in every sense of the word. The deep sound is cut by clean vocals in the chorus. Then, it’s back to the heaviness before taking a brief pause, to end with the charming tones in the chorus. “Power Schism” closes the album, and it might be the album’s most aggressive track. Waves of weighted guitars come at you, along with some guttural vocals. He chorus is clean, but the dominating sound is that powerful dissonance in the guitars. It finishes with a combination of clean and harsh vocals, before that final breakdown.

Punishing…grueling…brutal. Not being familiar with the band, I have no basis to judge them on their journey through four albums. But what I will say, is that this album is packed full of hate, rage and anger, along with some other emotions that might make you lash out. I find them closer to ARCHITECTS than to NOVELISTS, because they are missing some of the big melodies that the latter band puts out in their work. The guitar work here is so very tight you could not squeeze even a peek into the duo’s visceral blitzkrieg. Jesper can shift from deep, guttural passages to clean, soaring ones in the blink of an eye, and Sebastian is an expert on the drum kit. I would have loved just a little more melody here however.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. (3815935)
2. Desert Dread
3. Paper Tiger
4. Cult
5. Former Self
6. Coda
7. Ebb Flow
8. Cold Sweat
9. Coma
10. Power Schism
Jesper Vicencio Gün – Vocals
Nicklas Grønlund Thomsen – Guitars
Daniel Leszkowicz – Guitars
Sebastian Linnet – Drums
Record Label: Long Branch Records


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