Gespenst – Forfald

From two quarters of the fearsome Wobegone Obscured come to life Gespenst, based in Aarhus but, in fact, half French, since the self-styled Galskab is the Quentin Nicollet that we find also in the valid Dwell, as well as in the guise of Q. Woe of the Danish extreme doomsters. The project was started several years ago by Genfærd (aka M.Woe) but it seems much more than just a side vent: if black metal must be, this is really neither malleable nor obvious, since the duo (assisted on drums by Andreas Joen) strips it down and reshapes it on several occasions, giving it doom and ambient pulses and making it always and anyway not very reassuring. The beauty of all this is that it is still possible to find a melodic guideline that allows you not to get lost, even when heavy dissonances occupy the scene (Sorgens Taage and Min Sjael Raadner) or it is the studied slowness of doom to emerge with overbearance (Revelation Of Maggots); it is magnificent, finally, in its solemn and apocalyptic ferocity, the final Life Drained To The Black, only slightly more enjoyable for rhythmic solutions than the rest of the disc. Forfald is a damn difficult work to decipher, because when it seems to slip away without leaving any trace, it insinuates subtly under the skin inviting to deepen the contents, and that’s the moment when you fully understand that, when black metal is played and composed by capable, experienced and above all credible musicians as Gespenst are, it turns into an artistic form that can turn out to be negligible only for those who don’t want to listen to it for its own sake.

2016 – Duplicate Records