Gost – S/T

Well, isn't this fitting for the month?  We've been on a dark synthwave kick around here with several excellent submissions, including Perturbator's newest, which we reviewed not so long ago, and with whom we're currently finishing an interview.  In fact, he was the one that told us about this Gost character, so we gave him a look.  We would have waited until the very end of the month so you felt spooky, but that's too trendy.  Gost does not need to be trendy, and he probably doesn't care.  In fact he probably seeks to destroy it.  Gost is poison for the trend, the death of beat under the power of all that is synth.  "Wait a second," you say, "but isn't that the Church of Satan on the cover?  That seems fairly trend to me, no?"  Why yes, it is, but don't you get it?  Gost isn't using the image for the all-too-obvious symbolism, he's not trying to reference something you already know.  Gost is juxtaposing the dark and the light, utilizing degraded, forgotten decades to create the presence that needs no title but the name Gost itself.  That's why the image utilized looks like a blurred Polaroid from the 1960s, do you get it now?  Can you see the power of Gost?  Gost it taking the obvious and making it something new, the true mark of genius, and he is a genius of the machine known as the synth.

  

Never before has a synth been used to the level Gost has given us here.  Gost is a hunter of false synthwave, birthed from a human mother and synth father.  He chews upon input cables to further his powers, and only he can see the notes he will weave into your ears.  First off, for any plebs out there who are new to the genre, let's get that out of the way.  Most synthwave attempts to recreate the sounds of the pre-digital era, specifically referencing sci-fi and horror flicks most people have never heard of, perhaps like Love Me DeadlyMs. 45, stuff like that, which used to have the coolest covers even though the movie sucked.  So, trying to capture that sort of sound is the essence of the genre.  Most bands get it going easy enough, but they lack the style to pull it off for more than one or two songs.  Being primitive in nature, it needs either absolute synth mastery, or a story, or both.  The mastery/story approach you can find with Perturbator, the straight mastery approach, Gost.

 

Gost breaks your equilibrium when it comes to dark synthwave.  Once "Ritual" begins, it's quite clear this isn't the usual.  Gost doesn't care about beat, Gost takes the difficult-to-grasp aesthetic of IDM, at its foundation, and combines it with the simplicity of synthwave to create spectacular, mind-bending trendkill.  This S/T takes the primitive and multi-layers it so you're not simply given a one-dimensional approach.  Gost is a multi-dimensional being, his lithe fingers reach from the void and command the keys of his many synths, creating songs that are incredibly complex for this type of music.  You have the usual sounds you expect, but the level to which they've been programmed here is largely new, and highly interesting.  Each listen provides a different set of sounds to uncover with a driving force behind them as Gost brings back the thrill of watching an old VHS you found in the back of the local rental store with artwork that never has anything to do with the actual content, except in this case it has everything to do with it.  This may be one of the few times we've felt like actually buying a band shirt, provided he eventually tells us whether they're preshrunk or not (ahem, still waiting on that bit).  Two labels released this (see below), the first on limited cassette, the other via digital.  You should probably buy both of them.

 

Gost Official Facebook

Written by Stanley Stepanic

Gost – S/T
Graveyard Calling Horror Records/Girlfriend Records
5 / 5