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Gonemage – Mystical Extraction

Gonemage
Mystical Extraction
by Gary Hernandez at 14 August 2021, 3:48 PM

In early 2021, CARA NEIR released their sixth full-length album, “Phase Out.” As an off-shoot of that album’s storyline, GONEMAGE was born. IRL, GONEMAGE is the solo project of Garry Brents; in virtual space it is the musical expression of Brents’ phantom ego Galimgin. Garry Brents, a multi-instrumentalist who plays in a plethora of Experimental/Post-Metal bands and projects, hails from the Dallas, Texas region. Galimgin, an accidental adventurer of weird spaces, hails from the psychic residue/reflection/projection of a video game. “Mythical Extraction,” released on May 7, 2021, is the debut album of GONEMAGE and chronicles the experiences of Galimgin in his strange new world.

Here’s the official storyline: “During the warping of CARA NEIR into a video game dimension of ‘The Trimjrtle Sanction,’ a mysterious occurrence took place with the transference of \[Brents’] my corporeal self into pixelated subjugation. A phantom ego was plucked from this event and splintered off into a nostalgic dream realm, unaware of its human body and pixelated form, it wanders and spirals into other paths while its pixelated counterpart continues on in CARA NEIR’s gauntlet and timeline in parallel.”

Musically speaking, this is Experimental Black Metal, fusing 8-bit video gaming sensibilities with Black Metal and Jazz techniques. Fans of Nintendocore will find it utterly compelling. Others may struggle. While the appreciation of the music of “Mythical Extraction” will depend on the listener’s fondness for 80’s video gaming, the narrative is much more timeless and will appeal to a wider audience. The lyrics are anything but two-dimensional and display richer resolution than their sonic counterpart.

I was never into 8-bit games. I have no intellectual, emotional, or even spiritual attachment to that era of video gaming. For me, the boxy, granulated pixilation of early gen video games is something best left in the past. The sonic companion to those underpowered graphics—distinguished with a clownish cadence and flat distortion—is also a ‘no.’  With that said, my standout track list only includes “Dust Merchant” and “Dream Moat.” Those two tracks technically make up a third of the album so, all things considered, it isn’t bad.

Conceptually this is a very cool album, and word is the story of Galimgin will continue—call it a side-quest or an expansion. I do love the storyline, and I do love the Black Metal elements. It’s clever and it’s inventive. Execution-wise, however, the mix of 8-bit gaming thematic with Black Metal just doesn’t work for me. Alternatively, if you’re into 80’s gaming soundtracks, then this album may blow your mind.

Songwriting: 6
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 4
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1.  The Gullying and the Purple Hoax
2.  Chained Castle
3.  Dust Merchant
4.  Dream Moat
5.  Uncast
6.  Ipinta
Lineup:
Galimgim – Guitars, Bass, Vocals, Keyboards, Drum Programming
Record Label: Tomb Tree Tapes
     


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Edited 27 November 2022
 

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