GosT - S/T

A foreboding image serves as the album cover. The EP itself is not unlike a dark house, both threatening and beckoning.

GosT’s latest EP, “S/T,” is a collection of sound lying in wait to wound passersby with its intensity and phantasmagoric glory. With five tracks that call upon both dark and delightful tones, “S/T” is a testament to GosT’s rapid and frightening growth as an artist.

                In his first three short collections in 2013, GosT established his style as both retro and horror inspired. “Skull,” released in July of that year, showed us a crisper, cleaner, perhaps more acutely produced sound, but didn’t stray at all from these roots. “S/T” takes this growth and expands upon it, not only fitting into the theme of GosT’s works as a whole, but standing well on its own as a set of tracks that terrify and exhilarate with their power.

                The album combines inexorable beats with climbing, ominous melodies and a bone-crunching, pitch-black low end that churns the bowels and yet stirs the limbs to movement. You could dance to this music, most definitely, yet one can also imagine fleeing some unstoppable monster while hearing these haunting sounds. The bass end synth is not unlike a loosely distorted guitar, with a grinding presence that invites images of the butcher’s block and the buzzing bone saw. This sound pairs well with the crystalline, almost perversely angelic treble synths used throughout; indeed, it is as if one has stumbled upon the chorales and hymns of a truly dark religion. There is no way out once you press Play.

                The introductory track, “Ritual,” stays true to form, blending graceful arpeggios with winding, crunching bass and mournfully intense sampled orchestra hits. Its abrupt end drops us into “Cascade,” an aptly named track that begins slowly and builds threateningly before throwing us into a mid-paced but stimulating body of sound. From here we are brought back into fury with “Ascension,” the beat speeding up like the pulse of a sacrificial lamb just before the knife is brought across its throat. Consistently intense and hard-faced, this track kills. “Within” offers us another slow, ominous build, with tinkling tones and choral voice instruments chiming away. While a bit calmer than its predecessors on the album, the track provides its own nightmare visions as the sounds layer over one another. The longest track at just over six minutes, “Within” provides plenty of breaks and playful switches to keep the ear involved. The album ends gracefully with “Horizon,” a spooky and well-crafted epilogue that would fit well on any respectable horror OST.

                As a longtime fan of GosT, it is difficult to view his works objectively, but even in doing so, one must tip one’s hat. The work began as exemplary and has continued to grow as time has marched on. While it is by no means a long album, “S/T” is packed with goodness for the retro enthusiast and the horror music fiend alike.

~Ronnie Future (Bryan Eddy)