Spark It Up
We almost took a break from Death Metal this week, but we apparently can’t keep away from it! Our three main album reviews, however, are devoid of the brutality. They make up for that in riffs…and stoner vibes.
Orange Goblin – The Wolf Bites Back (Candlelight)
ASG – Survive Sunrise (Relapse)
Gyre – Shared Visions
All Is At An End
Orange Goblin – The Wolf Bites Back
So I’ve been thinking about your statement about not understanding why Ghost are as big as they are. I think there is an untapped market for current music in the style of classic rock. 25 years ago, you had Guns N Roses, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and other bands like them topping the charts. A generation later, who is carrying that flag for that style of music? The Foo Fighters are certainly one of them. But younger bands such as Greta Van Fleet have emerged to inform a new generation that Led Zeppelin were pretty darn good. There are still a lot of people from my generation who are looking for new music in the classic rock style. Presumably the next generation who didn’t grow up listening to classic rock may be discovering it now and are looking for modern music in that style. Ghost fits into that mold. They fill a void of classic rock that has been severely lacking mainstream support in recent years. I think that labels, venues, promoters, etc. are realizing that there is a demand for classic rock and part of Ghost’s success is due to right place and right time in what seems to be a growing demand for rock music. That plus Ghost’s songwriting is just so damn good.
My problem with that argument is that prior to Ghost, there were a few dozen other bands that would have filled that void, ones signed to reputable labels. We have reviewed a couple and you tried to get us to listen to a few more. The music has always beent here if people wanted it, and there have been plenty of bands that could have made it a little bigger if they had the right backing. I don’t know if Ghost are doing anything that much more phenomenal than some of their peers. So is this a Kiss (or Slipknot or Mudvayne) situation where the imagery is what garnered initial attention?
I would also like to know who actually makes up their fanbase. Is it your generation, mine, millenials, a mix? Because their push around the metal blogs I think would indicate a younger audience, but your point about your generation being fans makes some kind of sense.
That all said, perhaps it is my perspective that is part the problem – they should be discussed in rock and classic rock media, and not on Metal blogs. You don’t see Greta Van Fleet mentioned on the usual Metal blogs. I mean, I don’t know if I’d like Ghost that way either… I am listening to “Rats” right now and the song itself is fine for a rock song, but I do not care for vocals. (Artwork for that album is pretty rad though.)
It is a good question as to why Ghost is achieving success while other bands of a similar style of music are not. I’m sure the imagery, mystery and anonymity of the band (ala Slipknot) is a factor, but not the whole story. I think it just might be right place, right time, right support. There also a part of me that thinks it is about willpower and work ethic. I’ve read some interviews with recently outed Ghost frontman/mastermind Tobias Forge and the guy seems hell bent on making Ghost a success. He’s managed to get the band on some big tours: they opened for Iron Maiden last year. Certainly willpower and work ethic aren’t the only factors to success, but if you combine that with good music and good fortune, you have a shot.
Switching gears, I’m eagerly anticipating hearing your review of Khemmis. I’ve been listening to nothing but Khemmis all week.