|Review: Geist - Galeere|
Label: Lupus Lounge
Year released: 2009
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: July 21, 2009
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Rated 4/5 (80%) (19 Votes)
Previously to this album, the only thing I'd heard from Geist was their contribution of a cover of "Love of the Swan" to the Katatonia tribute album December Songs. Having only just come across this band in their own clothes on this their third album, I've now come to discover that their self-penned music is of a high quality too (albeit mostly in a different way to Katatonia's early deathly doomy magnificence).
Don't get me wrong, Geist do have their doomier sections, in fact they even have a few rockier parts and large ambient swathes that flavour the album too. But they are definitely a Black Metal band at heart. There is a lot of epic darkness here, each song acting as a requiem to the blackened husk of peace and happiness. At times their songs are so epic that they remind me of a blacker, non-Viking worshipping version of Moonsorrow, before sweeping into a section that makes me wonder what the hell I'm talking about, as they go on to a pulsating blackened rock sound more befitting to latter-day Satyricon. So, there is a lot of diversity here for sure, but the main thing that comes shining through is the atmosphere, and the sheer scope of the each of the five long songs that make up Galeere. The album is tied together by the concept of the sea, and its ability to act as place of tranquility as well as its threat and occasional hostility. Occasional beeps of morse code, whistling winds and flapping sails can be heard throughout adding extra gravitas and authenticity. A similar concept worked well for Funeral Doom band Ahab, and it's worked successfully here too.
Melody whips forth from solos, grimness flows from the chiming tar-filled chords, and bitterness ebbs from the Germanic hiss of the vocal work – whilst it all floats effortlessly together in complete equilibrium to form an album of well crafted and ambitious grandiosity. Well worth looking into.
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