For Fans Of
There used to be a time when an Epitaph Records logo on the back of a CD was like a quality guarantee. You know that what you were getting was going to be 1st rate, So-Cal skate punk in the vein of Pennywise, NOFX, Bad Religion etc…
Over the last few years, Brett Guerwitz (Bad Religion axe-man for those of you that have been living under a rock for 20 years) and the rest of the Epitaph staff have made a conscious effort for their label to branch out in other musical directions.
This has resulted in the label releasing albums from artists as diverse as hip-hop connoisseur Atmosphere to Boston noise mongers Converge. What is also means is that Epitaph is not immune to the sing/scream explosion that the rest of the world is currently experiencing. This is where I Am Ghost come in.
I Am Ghost’s debut album, Lovers’ Requiem, comes with a sticker on the front stating that the band will appeal to fans of AFI, Aiden, Him and Avenged Sevenfold. Now I tend to ignore most promotional materials as there are only so many bands that can be the next AFI.
Let me clear up a few things about I Am Ghost. They are not a bad band. They just aren’t that good. The only similarities I can see between them and AFI/Avenged Sevenfold is the quasi-gothic aesthetic that all these bands currently rock. Their guitar work is no where near as impressive as the Metallica worshipping lads in AVX7 and their lyrics pale in comparison to the epic story telling of Davey Havok and co.
Technically the band has done everything right. They have a marketable image, a well produced album and a seal of approval from one of the world’s powerhouse punk labels, but that’s still not enough. I Am Ghost seem content to live in a land of mediocrity. They clearly have the chops to right a good song, and the inclusion of a female vocalist who also plays the piano AND the violin adds some original elements to the songs. Unfortunately these elements aren’t used frequently enough and what we are left with is another band that’ve stolen their mum’s (or dad’s) eyeliner and written an album.
After saying all that, second track “Our Friend Lazarus Sleeps” is an absolute ripper – Maiden influenced riffing and a bridge which would have the most jaded kid (myself included) pogoing.
If the band survives long enough to make a 2nd album, I hope they take
a path other than the well worn road they’re currently on, because I Am
Ghost do have the ability to come up something different.
1. Crossing The River Styx – 1:56
2. Our Friend Lazarus Sleeps – 2:55
3. Killer Likes Candy – 3:33
4. Dark Carnival of the Immaculate – 3:15
5. Pretty People Never Lie, V