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Graveyard Ghoul - The Living Cemetery

Graveyard Ghoul
The Living Cemetery
by Tony "Demolition Man" Dolan at 12 March 2014, 9:25 PM

''Tomb Of The Mouldered Corpses'' was the début on Final Gate Records in 2013 and again on Final Gate comes the follow up from GRAVEYARD GHOUL. Old vein Death Metal is the tag, and with the likes of AUTOPSY, DEATH (the early stuff), MORBID SAINT and CANCER cited as influences then you got to expect something cool. They hail from Northern Germany, Lower Saxony actually, so I also would like something brooding and mildly Gothic. They say, their themes are, death, darkness, evil and old horror movies!! Bring it on! Let’s then, sit in the dark with an old black and white horror movie flickering on the old (None Plasma or LCD but tube) TV in the corner of the room and wait for the death strike of some crazy maniac who has been hiding in the room all the time waiting for his chance.

''Lunatic Possession'' strikes first and we are off. Is it Death Metal in the ''old vein'' then? Yes, can you feel the vibe of the influences? Yes. It feels gloomy and dusty and tastes of Death, a touch of old world keys to open with a spoken (in German and from a movie) overlay and some glorious dirt follows. ''Living Cemetery'' doesn't so much as open but rather spills onto the floor like a bucket of blood and runs into every crack and groove…basic in its sounds and production, it could be something from an earlier time and not 2014, short, ugly and dripping in gore, the song that is, not the band. ''Vomit To The Grave'' (Loving the titles) just happens…Wham!! Drags you by your neck through the mud and boom…it's gone..There is such a throwback feel here almost to the conceptive point where extreme Metal began to turn into Black Metal as a genre. It doesn't feel like GRAVEYARD GHOUL are trying too hard though, it feel very genuine, like this is who they are.

A walking bass line introduces. ''Scrapping From A coffin'', “The Falling of the House of Usher” comes to mind! But as the lyric tells us you are waking up in the casket, you are alone in the dark it's their buried alive song. It feels foreboding and I expect their love of horror films has given them that edge to create some real nice dark atmosphere in their songs as it is oozing out of, well what would be grooves if I actually had the vinyl. It's all quite prime evil (if you'll excuse me) in sound production and approach but then that is what gives it its charm. ''Who Goes There'' comes striding into the room next and here I hear more modern twists of Death Metal and the pace steps up and it's good to hear. Now ''The Putrid Stench Of Death'' I expected to be fucking ugly, dirty and heavy but guess what? It is all of that but with a real cool riff and groove too and following ''Who Goes There'' on the album is a cool contrast… at some point during the track I actually could smell something odd, then remembered I'd left my socks on the couch next to me, so kind of a ''Putrid Stench'', not running through my veins like in the track but definitely creating my very own scratch and sniff atmosphere… More walking bass towards the tracks conclusion and an almost BLACK SABBATH feel, then we are plunged into a bar of glorious ugly GRAVEYARD GHOUL to close, nice.

I like tempos shifting and ''Secrecy Of Dying Flesh'' has classic doomy tempo switching to up paced death tempo… because of this it pushes and pulls at your inner beat manager and when you play with that natural human rhythm of the listener, it leaves you somewhat out of breath at the end and this seems to be what is cool about GRAVEYARD GHOUL, they aren't ignoring the listener just to present themselves but you are part of the experience and that I like. Another voice over from a movie, a woman, a man, hammering on a wooden door, some shit is going down then fuck me… ''Rotten, Gore, Excrements, Whore'' throws a rough bass in your face and then slams you fast a furiously around for a minute until you are a mass of helplessness then they fuck off, just magnificent, reminded me of those old S.O.D. / NUCLEAR ASSAULT songs Dan Lilker loved writing so much (“Ballad of Jimi Hendrix”, “My America” etc..)…Except this is a little longer.

''Sentenced To The Knife'', is great, all I like about this style, classic riffage meets the now, and just so you know who GRAVEYARD GHOUL are I suspect… pacey and in your face, the vocal production reverbed to the 1980's again, ah… reverb… now on Vinyl this would be even more enjoyable, cup of tea, volume on 11 and the crackle to join the stench… ahhhh. And so a crash cymbal that had died in 1982 introduces the final statement, ''Funeral Priest'' Now it's like the drums were all recorded in a rehearsal room and lack of production finesse maintains that old school feel. Touch of SABBATH again in part… down paced mostly is the song but again it's basic feel keeps the ugliness very much abundant, it not my fav track on the album I was thinking, then the bass tell some to listen and the whole thing changes. Up goes the pace with a likeable riff… some really cool interesting atmospheric sounds take us out as the sound disassembles itself on the echo and reverb decaying us an hissing  us into a void, where once there stood GRAVEYARD GHOUL.

Did I like it? Yeah, will you? Oh yes, make it your

3 Star Rating

1. Lunatic Possession
2. Living Cemetery
3. Vomit To The Grave
4. Scraping From A Coffin
5. Who Goes There
6. Putrid Stench Of Death
7. Secrecy Of Dying Flesh
8. Rotten, Gore, Excrements ,Whore
9.  Sentenced To The Knife
10. Funeral Priest
Tyrantor – Vocals/Drums
Tombcrusher - Bass
Disgracer – Vocals / Guitar
Record Label: Final Gate Records


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