Review made by: Erik
Gaahlskagg, Gorgoroth, God Seed, Trelldom and Wardruna: what do these bands have in common? Well vocalist Gaahl of course! After making two albums with Wardruna he now returns to seize the Black Metal throne again. After some live performances of Gaahls Wyrd, playing Gorgoroth and Trelldom songs, it is now time for their debut album GastiR – Ghosts Invited. And well it combines old and new projects of Gaahl in great fashion!
The first thing which strikes me is Gaahl’s voice. Together with Mortuus (Marduk, Funeral Mist) Gaahl is the most diverse and stunning vocalist in the black metal scene. On this album he proves again that his voice is very versatile. Gaahl screams, grunts and whispers but especially his clean vocals are something extraordinary. With his vocals he manages to create a threatening, melancholic and very eerie atmosphere. And it works really well!
First track “Ek Erilar” begins, and ends, with a very haunting intro before bursting into sheer Black Metal. You can regard this track as an interlude on what’s to come. The second song “From the Spear” starts aggressive with Gaahl screaming his guts out. The middle part of the song is a little slower. Here the clean chanting of Gaahl mesmerises you and will lead you into a pitch dark void. An excellent and very dark melancholic track which sends shivers through my spine. “Ghosts Invited” is in the same vein of “From the Spear” and will enthral you with great guitar riffs and, of course, the haunting voice of Gaahl.
“Carving the Voices” is a melancholic somewhat slower song where the clean singing makes this song something extraordinary while “Veitzu Hve” has a link with old Trelldom songs. On “The Speech and the Self” it is again Gaahl who steals your attention with its unique voice. Together with great guitar riffs and song writing this is an instant classic while “Through and past and past” is a short aggressive song which shows the furious side of Gaahls Wyrd.
At the culmination of it all the last song “Within the Voice of Existence” is again a haunting, eerie track which is slowly, but deadly, making an end towards this album.
Is there something to remark? Well sometimes the guitar could have a little more power in this production. Does it hinder? Hell no! GastiR – Ghosts Invited is a superb album which makes great use of Gaahl’s talent. Combine it with a great atmosphere, superb song writing and you have year list material! If you are a fan of Trelldom, Gorgoroth and other projects you can purchase this album blindly. If you are into black metal with a unique approach you also won’t be disappointed. Although I have seen Gaahls Wyrd live I really want this unique band perform songs from this album on the stage. I am overwhelmed by the sheer quality of this record and Gaahl and his comrades are justified contenders for the Norwegian Black Metal throne.
Score: 8,8 out of 10
Label: Season of Mist
Ek Erilar (05:34)
2. From The Spear (04:37)
3. Ghosts Invited (04:23)
4. Carving The Voices (07:26)
5. Veiztu Hve (06:41)
6. The Speech And The Self (05:02)
7. Through And Past And Past (02:59)
8. Within The Voice Of Existence (05:25)