Treading the Missed Mondays: Ghoul – Dungeon Bastards

GREETINGS, FELLOW PERISHABLES!

Do you remember the first time you watched the absolute masterpiece that is Ridley Scott’s “Alien”? The way the title slowly builds, block by block, against that perfect cinematic deep space?

That, was how you start a movie.

“Ghetto Blasters” the intro track off of Ghoul’s fifth full-length, begins with defeated analog synth, and narration that could honestly give Vincent Price a run for his money. As soon as I hit play and heard the start to this album, I knew this wasn’t something I could just throw on in the background while I got day-wreckingly baked and played Rocket League, no-no,

THIS, was how you start an album.

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In essence, the story goes that a boy is born to a woman who most believe to be a witch, he grows up all big and burly learning all about that nastay dark majic and what-not. Upon maturity he decides he also wants to be Obama, so he throws on his dick-kickin’ boots and goes all out to rule Creepsylvania.

Don’t let that fool you though.

This is a Ghoul album.

The second track, “Bringer of War” let’s you know exactly what to expect across a good majority of the record. Relentless thrash riffs, gang vocals, blast beats, and pound upon pound of grime. This album is so landfill-esque that I could slick back my hair with it (in a good way). Not only does the second track continue the fiction of the album, it’s just straight-up one of the best ones on it. Polished and fantastically mastered, the only critique I would give is that some of the drum mix for the toms seems be too far down at times, but that’s probably me being a picky bitch.

It also wouldn’t be a Ghoul album without at least one song that’s somehow about skateboarding, so get down with a song that’s about corpse-grinding and manages not to have George Fisher in it, “Shred The Dead”. Pretty sure when these boys get so plastered that they sleep in the nearest pool so that they’ll have somewhere to skate when they wake up, coated in ectoplasmic goo.

If there was going to be a song I didn’t love, it would be track four, “Ghoulunatics”, which is the name the real die hard Ghoul fans have either earned or coined to the point that it’s now on an album. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good fan song, but you can’t actually put “-and buy all our merch!” in there and expect people to reeeeally take that as the lynchpin in whether or not they get a shirt as well. Brings me back to those old Birth A.D/Jeff Tandy lyrics,

“No zombies, no mutants,
No nuclear waste!
We’ll leave it to bands without any taste!
No songs about partying,
That’s such a bore!
Fuck all your gimmicks,
We’re ready for war!”

In the past the band has poked fun at the comedy of what encompasses them, but this is very much the “War” album. Bangers back to front, each song, dialed-in.

I believe as a band, Ghoul can more than stand on their own against most of the “big-league” metal bands out there,and are unequivocally one of the most risen thrash titans we’ve seen in almost a decade, so that being said, I’m going to let that little bit of self-plugging slide, directly into the next song “Blood and Guts”. A more morose mood through the whole piece, but it was very much what I was craving at that point in the album. A lot of more recent metal releases have had quite terrible pacing as a whole. It seems copious amounts of bands are intrinsically widdling it down to, “We like these songs, don’t worry about album continuity, we’re already famous on Bandcamp”, which is TURBOHYPER DUMB. Lucky for us, this is not a problem “Dungeon Bastards” has at all.

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EASILY my favorite on the album is “Word Is Law”. Sung from the perspective of the antagonist, Dodrunkum, what a feast of a tune that one is. While switching the main vocal styles quite heavily, but maintaining the underlying gutteral-ness of it all, the whole track is just classic thrash candy. If you don’t think Ghoul could have been right there in a straightjacket with Anthrax, or reigning blood with Slayer, I think you need to think again, friend. With the most sewage-surfing solo you’ll lay ears on today, I found myself washing back up to this one over and over again.

As Dod-y continues his Anti-Ghoul war we come to “Death Campaign”, which seems to be the song for all the Ross Bay Kvlt out there, ’cause she is faaaast and blasty. (Shout out to those same d-bags who wear sunglasses inside, at fucking night time, and take them off to smoke outside. End yourselves). Stumbling, lumbering beasties and mutants rioting through your town is pretty thought provoking, especially from the view of the unsuspecting. B-Movie stuff that I personally couldn’t get enough of.

The final couplet of offerings given unto their listener’s arrive as “Guitarmageddon”, and “Abominox”. The first of which is a nuclear-propaganda soaked pit-mover, there ain’t nothing to do to that one but put your head down and take your hits. My favorite exert being ” The comedy is, even if we don’t all die immediately, the radiation will kill us painfully, over the years”. The latter, and final song however, did not leave me wanting for anything. Filled with absolutely immaculate tempo, and the lyrics, just, MWAH! As soon as you get into the topic of gigantic grave-boars built from discarded corpses with multiple jaws. . .then you’ve got all sorts of my attention.

As a whole I would say this is the “Bacon” of the Ghoul-balanced breakfast, of which I’ve been told is mostly beer. “We Came For The Dead” being the bread, “Splatterthrash” being the butter, and the rest being hashbrowns, (“Morning of the Mezmetron” is OJ or something because it also rules), this album is what Ghoul is. They love their fans. They love the fiction of the world they’ve created, and god-damn if they don’t love a thick-ass riff. This album only made me more of a fan than I once was, and if you haven’t given Ghoul the time yet, I impatiently wait for you to check them out.

“-AND BUY, ALL, THEIR, MERRRRRCH!”

*REMIX/AIRHORN*

WORMROT – FALLEN IN DISUSE.

IT’S BEEN A MILLION YEARS SINCE WORMROT HAS PUT OUT AN ALBUM AND I NEEDED TO BE GROUND DOWN. THE NEW SINGLE “FALLEN IN DISUSE” DROP SHORTLY BACK AND I’VE ONLY LISTENED TO IT LIKE 85 TIMES. CAPSLOCK LIKE I’M PUTTING ON A HARDCORE SHOW.

WE NOW RETURN YOU TO YOUR REGULARLY SCHEDULED DECAY

– Bear

Jimmies rustled? Wanna fight about it? Let us know why below!

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