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GOG - Ironworks

by Spyros Stasis at 12 August 2013, 4:21 PM

GOG is the ambient noise project of Michael Bjella. Signed now to Season of Mist, Bjella records his latest work, “Ironworks” in a late 19th century blacksmith shop, where members of his own family toiled. If that does not make an album personal then I do not know what does. Even though the sound of the record is quite harsh, hidden underneath all the noise and industrial soundscapes, you find a reclusive melodic side of the band.

The music itself is quite cinematic; with the abstract themes crafting an immense dark ambiance, bringing forth a sinister soundtrack focused around physical labor. That much is obvious from the very start of the album, with the repetitive beating of “1870-1906” sticking in your head while the noises are altering the reality around you, managing to sound sharp and aggressive but, at the same time, with a certain dreamlike element to them. The melodic parts can be compared as an oasis amidst a vast desert, necessary to put your mind in a calmer state before you resume the long journey.

The industrial influences of “Tasks Which Destroy Body and Soul” are excruciating, tearing your very existence apart while the chant like voices are there to haunt your very thoughts. The use of vocals works quite well with “God Says to Love You In Chains”, with GOG employing a sharp Black Metal vocals that increases the claustrophobia of “Ironworks”. The music itself turns to more mournful paths as the build up of the track steadily becomes more and more suffocating. “A Promised Eternity Fulfilled with Cancer” sees the extreme noises spreading and distorting the whole spectrum of the track, while at the same time the melodic piano parts offer great contrast to the overwhelming background.

“Into Her, She Carved The Word Empty” incorporates a more dystopian setting. GOG transfer you to a post-apocalyptic world of their own making, from which there is no escape. The track is more minimalistic and is sequentially able to awaken a disturbing aura about it. The breathing sound is excellent while the tension is enhanced by the various sounds passing through. The music becomes more brutal and piercing about four and a half minutes and then retreats to its earlier, minimalistic state. The darkened aura ties in with the closing track of the album, “I Draw My Strength From You”, with the metallic hits giving an almost ritualistic attribute to the song, ending the album in a trancelike note.

If experimental, Noise or Industrial music is not your thing, then GOG will not appeal to you. But if you like big sounds, unreal soundscapes and a towering ambiance that will have you gasping for air, then you certainly need to dive in “Ironworks”.

4 Star Rating

1. 1870-1906
2. Tasks Which Destroy Body and Soul
3. God Says to Love You In Chains
4. A Promised Eternity Fulfilled with Cancer
5. Into Her, She Carved The Word Empty
6. I Draw My Strength From You
Michael Bjella – Everything
Record Label: Season Of Mist


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Edited 05 December 2022

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