Ghost Brigade - Isolation Songs
Season Of Mist
Atmospheric/Progressive Metal
11 songs (56:44)
Release year: 2009
Ghost Brigade, Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Goat

Moving on from their rather good 2007 debut, Finnish wizards Ghost Brigade have done it again, building on their strengths to make album number two a step along the path Guided By Fire took without being a repetition of it. Summing the band up isn’t easy – “Katatonia meets Paradise Lost with subtle Melodeath and pretty obvious post-Metal influences” sort of does it, but Ghost Brigade are both more aggressive and more laid-back than the Swedes and Brits. They’re also a good deal more Progressive, songs being looser in structure although just as catchy; I’m easily prepared to admit that I prefer Ghost Brigade’s varied palette to Katatonia’s depressive repetition. Isolation Songs is quite remarkable in its variety, from the epic instrumental work of 22:22 Nihil to the driving misery of Architect Of New Beginnings, all the songs are individual yet all point at the same goal, working in parallel to create their unique feeling.

Opening blast Suffocated is a case in point, relatively straightforward semi-technical riffing with backing atmospherics, the track moving uneasily somewhere between Melodeath and Toolish Prog Metal. It’s effortlessly catchy and a great opening track, the keyboard effects giving the song a strangely foreboding feel and setting the listener up well for the more varied My Heart Is A Tomb, which moves between clean and harsh-vocalled sections in a way quite unlike the Metalcore hordes that generally do that sort of thing. Into The Black Light is almost Pop Rock in delivery, Lost In A Loop is Doom-infested, the harsh yowls again coming to the fore with epic pounding riffs, and the nine minute Birth travels pleasantly Proggy territory as it walks between the two worlds of heaviness and melody, the following Concealed Revulsions switching to total cleanliness to make the distinction greater.

Ultimately, all that can be done is to recommend this album to fans of both Katatonia and Paradise Lost. This isn’t such a potent mix that it’ll replace Thrash revivalism as the latest soulless fad, but neither is it the silent cry of a band that deserves to be lost in the mix of B-division Metal –enough to demand attention from the fickle Metalhead, but lost amidst those with better advertising budgets. Ghost Brigade are big, they’re bold, they’re melancholic but beautiful in a way that emo characters like the chap from that Twilight film (you know, the one all the girls between the ages of 10 and 90 seem to fancy) wish they were; Ghost Brigade won’t kick your teeth in, but they will sit and hold your hand for a while in a completely manly fashion, and as such are a great experience. This is a real grower, and I may well find myself listening to this enough times over the coming months for it to merit a higher score - music for music fans, without a doubt.

MySpace
Killing Songs :
Suffocated, My Heart Is A Tomb, Lost In A Loop, Architect Of New Beginnings, Birth, Concealed Revulsions
Goat quoted 84 / 100
Other albums by Ghost Brigade that we have reviewed:
Ghost Brigade - IV - One With the Storm reviewed by Goat and quoted 85 / 100
Ghost Brigade - Until Fear No Longer Defines Us reviewed by Jaime and quoted 91 / 100
Ghost Brigade - Guided By Fire reviewed by Goat and quoted 80 / 100
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