October 3, 2019 GosT – Valediction (Album Review)
What makes something new and special in 2019 when so much has already been done? What draws someone in and keeps them following the ever-flowing force of forward progression? Well, for starters mixing odd genres together in a cohesive and creative way definitely has its appeal musically, and one artist who has his hands fully submerged in this movement is GosT.
GosT, embodying the character of Baalberith, creates very dark John Carpenter-inspired Synthwave and mixes in strong, heavy elements of Black Metal. His roots stem from his participation in some unknown Metal and Hardcore bands as a teen, plus being exposed to the music scene in general through his father. While not much is out in the open for GosT, what is known is that he is back stronger than ever with his sixth studio album Valediction, which is set for release on Friday, October 4th via Century Media Records.
Texas born, GosT is a genius producer who often is found wearing a skull mask, though recently has made his appearance a bit less obscure. Heavily influenced by Horror movie scores of the olden days of the 1980s, he switches from synth to guitar and rarely includes vocals. A pleasant surprise, Valediction comes packed with vocals ranging from clean to scream. In fact, the whole album takes listeners on a wild ride from dark electronic Synthwave to Black Metal, and is quite visionary. With the challenge of belonging to a similar category as the French Synthwave artist Perturbator, GosT remains quite unique in his approach.
Complete with ten songs, turning back the clock a bit to GosT’s most influential album, 2015’s Behemoth, the power progression into Valediction is certainly not a boring one. That said, the opening of “Relentless Passing” blasts a Black Metal beat in your face and then switches abruptly to a mellow Darkwave melody that really resonates. In enough words, it creates a powerful dichotomy that cannot be penetrated. Jumping ahead to “Timeless Turmoil,” some of the same juxtaposition exists in an altered way. This is while early cut “Wrapped In Wax” exemplifies all the genius of the GosT mindset in all the catchiest ways relating to that ’80s electronic sound, but refusing to let it dominate.
Then with those Darkwave vocal tones hovering over the beats in “Dreadfully Pious,” suddenly it takes on a Clan Of Xymox sound that is very pleasurable and still original in its execution. After, “Bloody Roses” chimes in with a screaming electro sound turned ’80s Darkwave jam, all while somehow not seeming to be out of place with the prior Black Metal antics. As the climax of the album begins, heavier ’80s Horror soundtrack melodies weave their way in with “She Lives In Red Light,” leaving a great, fresh dance vibe that heads will certainly bop to. Rounding out the tail end, three specially-crafted Horror Synthwave tunes “Ligature Marks,” “Push,” and “Severance” all leave their signature marks.
The splurge of Black Metal into each track is exceptionally programmed, and it is no wonder why GosT has an upcoming European tour joining Black Metal veterans Mayhem. Also, live on stage to make this rendition of GosT even more special it was announced earlier this year the invocation of Carreau will join Baalberith in a live setting.
When it all is said and done the exciting future of Synthwave and Black Metal exists in its most forthright form through the spirit of GosT. There are few musicians brave enough to cross uncharted territories such as this, and even fewer to come out successful. Valediction is a force to be reckoned with, and contains music worthy of spreading its magic all throughout the world. For these reasons, Cryptic Rock gives this album 5 out of 5 stars.