NSP 150 :
Ghost Bath - Starmourner DigiCD/CD/DLP/TS
April 21st, 2017
Click here for a photo of the
| DLP violet
| DLP silver
Where Ghost Bath's critically
acclaimed "Moonlover" album (the first part of a trilogy) explored
earth, purgatory & tragedy, their new opus "Starmourner" focuses on
joy, the cosmos, paradise & ecstasy. With over 72
minutes of heavy, melodic, and dramatic Black Metal, it is Ghost Bath's
most ambitious undertaking yet. The album
takes its listener on a journey in a variety of ways. Each track is
accompanied by a beautifully crafted painting as well
as a "parable" to read alongside. This allows the listeners to explore
not only the audio soundscapes, but also to have a
visual and imaginative experience as they delve into the album. "The
stories, or parables, look into Jewish angelology
and the hierarchy of angels as found in the bible and other religious
texts." says Nameless. "Although the album has a
definitive joyful and hopeful feel, it is still drenched in depression
and sorrow, as any true Ghost Bath record should be."
The European pressing is released by Northern Silence, the North
American pressing by Nuclear Blast, the Japanese pressing by Ward
The European version of the CD comes as Collector's Edition in
digipack, limited to 1000 copies, as well as regular edition in jewel
case. Both include an extensive 28-page booklet.
The DLP comes in gatefold cover, with printed innersleeves and
two-sided A2 poster. The gold vinyl is limited to 144 copies, the
violet vinyl to 414 copies and the silver vinyl to 441 copies.
1. Astral 3:20
2. Seraphic 5:50
3. Ambrosial 8:30
4. Ethereal 6:54
5. Celestial 8:14
6. Angelic 5:23
7. Luminescence 6:08
8. Thrones 6:20
9. Elysian 5:22
10. Cherubim 4:26
11. Principalities 6:14
12. Ode 4:28
Official Bandcamp page
is an album that must be listened to to be believed. Stunning and
emotionally resonating at every junction it pushes Ghost Bath to the
upper echelons of the new wave of backgaze and atmospheric black metal."
9/10 - www.altdialogue.com
"The album handles its newfound size like a field general deftly
outmaneuvering an unworthy opponent. The immediate eclipse of Moonlover
may put off fans unhappy to see Ghost Bath succumb to heavier desires,
but it should delight those less rigid in their stylistic adherence.
Starmourner shatters the already-high expectations in Ghost Bath’s
young career, and if you’ve got ears, you should hear it for yourself."
4/5 - www.angrymetalguy.com
Bath has achieved something magical with Starmourner. This is not
“Moonlover 2.0”, and I’m glad that it isn’t. Nameless’ vocal delivery
doesn’t contain a single word to be interpreted. Yet, it’s the emotion
behind its sound that makes it unique, while the rest of the band
attacks with full aggression and beauty to deliver this message of joy
and sorrow. It will be hard to top off this one, but I’m looking
forward to the end of this trilogy. Well done!"
"Starmourner is the kind of record where it would
be difficult to
find a song that couldn’t be considered a highlight. With as grim as
they can be, they are also capable of uplifted melodies that give the
listener a sense of hope and victory. This sentiment is most pronounced
in the song “Celestial,” my favorite track overall. Though there are
enough good things about what Ghost Bath is doing to fill 10 reviews, I
will leave it up to you, the listener, to find this out for yourselves."
"Previously, it’s been easy to compare Ghost Bath with fellow
post-black progressives such as Deafheaven and Wolves in the Throne
Room, but Starmourner is such an intelligent, immersive and
transcendent album that it truly becomes an entity in and of itself. As
an experience and an achievement, it is awe-inspiring."
9/10 - www.farbeyondwritten.com
"This is the best album Ghost Bath have released & a serious
contender for album of the year."
"In terms of the quality of the songwriting, Starmourner isn’t vastly
different from either of Ghost Bath’s previous LPs, but their unique
approach to songwriting makes this album a more rewarding and original
listen than either of its predecessors. Although it’d be a misnomer to
refer to this record as a classic or a groundbreaking achievement in
the blackgaze genre, Ghost Bath has certainly set themselves apart from
their peers in a way that makes Starmourner an enticing and rewarding
listen. Will this be the record that breaks them through and connects
them with a larger fanbase? Maybe, maybe not, but any blackgaze fan
worth their salt should do themselves a favor and at least give
Starmourner a once-over. If their trajectory thus far is any
indication, Ghost Bath is definitely a band to keep an eye on from here
9/10 - letteredallunderground.blogspot.de
Musically, it's an incredible roller coaster of beautiful, melancholic
moments partnered with some upbeat riffing & some traditional black
metal guitar work. The addition of piano in a couple of tracks really
works to amplify the beauty and sadness that can be felt throughout the
album. The vocals are a very haunting style of black metal wails and
screams that just worm their way through your very being. They really
help pull the album together and work in harmony with the music to
provide the perfect soundscape for the story that "Starmourner" tells.
I am very impressed with the song quality, the musicality, and the
overall depth and feeling that Ghost Bath deliver with this album."
4.5/5 - www.maximummetal.com
"Mit ihrer Entscheidung, sich mehr auf packende
jene von „Golden Number“ („Moonlover“) zu konzentrieren, lagen GHOST
BATH jedoch goldrichtig. Heraus kam dabei nämlich eine außergewöhnliche
Platte, die ein unfassbar großes Spektrum an Emotionen wiedergibt und
trotz kleinerer Schwachstellen weit mehr ist als nur eine Ansammlung
8.5/10 - www.metal1.info
"Ghost Bath has made their
signature sound flourish on this new release, digging deeper into rough
and restless emotions. They upheave the heart and are unapologetic for
their mournful, yet slightly hopeful sound. The constant, unwavering,
tormented high-pitched moans bellow and the guitars slam away with the
determination of a hungry animal. The overall hauntingly harsh yet
somber and graceful sound is entertaining. ‘Starmourner’ will have you
thinking and feeling. It’s well worth a listen."
8/10 - www.metalassault.com
"Insgesamt fahren Ghost Bath mit „Starmourner“ ein sehr
außergewöhnliches und sehr starkes, fast sensationelles Album auf.
Nicht nur, dass GHOST BATH extrem versierte Musiker sind, auch das
Songwriting von Nameless ist großartig. Zusätzlich ist das gesamte
Konzept sehr gekonnt durch den punktuell angepassten Sound sehr passend
unterstützt. Es wird jedem Metalhead wärmstens empfohlen die 72 Minuten
pure Metal-Genialität zu genießen und sich hierin fallen zu lassen –
inklusiver aller emotionaler Höhen und Tiefen."
"When picking up this album and looking for shoegaze, some punk
influence, or another type of second wave manifestation to which labels
so hastily stick, look instead for the patient presentation and nature
building experience Ghost Bath has created. Originality has finally
been found, and even though it's not a perfect release, its 85% there
for what I look for in the spectrum of data in this bands discography.
Give it a chance to explain itself to you, and I hope you find the
redeeming flow and tone as pleasant as I found it."
8.5/10 - www.metalinjection.net
"It may not have the raw, bleak power of Moonlover, but Starmourner is
a different beast that has it’s own power and majesty. Considering it
is twice the songs Moonlover had it will take more time to digest. But
once fully swallowed it’s another fine album to a growing discography
that hammers home that this band are special and ones to watch."
"Ghost Bath's strength as a band had always been the ability to create
picturesque post-black atmospheres, and Starmourner throws more effort
at that, too, with varying degrees of success. Thrones, one of my
favorite songs on the album, melds the black metal with guitar lead
riffs in the first half, then a tinkling piano is mixed in on top,
resulting in a furious energy mixed with those newfound major-key
riffs. The band experiments with different rhythms throughout, but with
more confidence than previously. But just as on Moonlover, they indulge
their love of instrumentals at times, once with a clean guitar, and
once at the end with piano, which can occasionally get repetitious."
82/100 - www.metalreviews.com
"Obviously, the record itself doesn’t seem to be a depressing affair
which will probably upset a couple of people, but you just can’t please
everyone in this genre. Ghost Bath took what I think is a very risky,
yet very wise decision and chose to follow up their heavily publicized
sophomore with something a little – different."
4/5 - www.newnoisemagazine.com
"Ghost Bath plays a style of
post black metal that is very
depressive and atmospheric sounding while
also having its raw moments, the
production sounds very professional while
the lyrics cover joy, paradise,
cosmos and ecstasy themes.
In my opinion Ghost Bath are
a very great sounding atmospheric
and depressive post black metal
band and if you are a fan
of this musical genre, you should
check out this album."
8.5/10 - www.occultblackmetalzine.blogspot.de
"A seventy two minute journey from Ghost Bath that will pick you up and
drop you down on an emotionally charged stunning album."
5/5 - www.planetmosh.com
"‘Starmourner’ adds twists, turns and excitement to a genre that didn’t
want, nor need, to be accepted by anyone other than the known. Granted,
one could suggest that black metal has become catnip for hipsters in
recent years, but when a band like Ghost Bath are creating such
grandiose compositions as ‘Thrones’ and ‘Cherbium’, who can blame a
wider audience for being attracted to this world."
"Fazit: Ghost Bath haben ihre Form gefunden und lassen nichts
vermissen, um fesselnd und mitreissend zu unterhalten. Die erhebende
Grundnote des Albums und manche Weichheit wollen allerdings gemocht
sein, sonst wird das Album zum Stresstest, nicht nur für Jünger
11/13 - www.schwermetall.ch
"Ein wieder wirklich gelungenes Album von GHOST BATH. Es ist schön zu
sehen, dass sich die Jungs gleichzeitig treu geblieben sind und
trotzdem auch ein wenig weiterentwickelt haben. Auch die Produktion ist
noch etwas besser als zuvor, weshalb es sich durchaus lohnt, das Album
mit einer guten Anlage oder Kopfhörern zu genießen."
"Starmourner will more than likely end up on my year end list,
due to some of the utterly breathtaking melodies, let the haters
hate. And now, I’m really looking forward to the next album..."
"So what can be said about this album? For a doom/black metal effort,
this is bizarrely uplifting, even “happy”, most of the way through. At
times plodding along at a gentle pace, and others blasting along at the
full 120mph in exemplary black metal style, this isn't an album that is
immediately easy to get to grips with or categorise. Swinging wildly
from gentle melodies to epic, sweeping, almost power metal style riffs,
through to blast beats and screamed vocals, this really is an odd album
with a real mix of influences showing through. Somehow deeply
reminiscent of old early 2000s black metal, this album has 'retro'
stamped all over it, yet also feels fresh, reminding me at times of
Wolves in the Throne Room or Deafheaven and other “post-black metal”
"Fazit: Gegensätze ziehen sich an?! Besser kann man Starmourner
abschließend nicht beschreiben. Überhaupt nicht Massenkompatibel
erschaffen Ghost Bath eine ganz eigene Anhängerschaft, die in der
Schwerenlosigkeit dahertreiben. Technisch spannend kann ich nach
mehreren Durchläufen nur neidlos den Daumen heben und den Stempel für
Insider auf das Cover drücken. Wenn man zu seinem Spiegelbild sagt:
Nein, ich bin nicht schizophren, hat man Starmourner verinnerlicht."
9/10 - www.time-for-metal.eu
"Starmourner is magical, full of powerful melodies and hinting at black
metal majesty of the sort that many of the bands peers have basically
ignored for years now. This is a group who emphasize strong songwriting
and artistic elegance, going a step beyond even scene pioneers in bands
like Deafheaven and using their waves of sonic magick to leave the
listener in awe. [...] Ghost Bath understand not only the concept of
great riff writing and lead lines but moreover how these things fit
into the context of the post black metal genre. They have been able to
create something with Starmourner that stands out as a monolithic
statement, blending old school black metal with modern magic that
leaves you in utter awe. [...] Starmourner is almost a masterpiece.
It's a record that can't help but to capture your imagination and which
sees the band moving closer to their place in the heavy metal pantheon."
"Starmourner is a bold album. Unafraid to be true to itself and nothing
else, the band have written an album full of passion and emotion, one
which embraces a different path through black metal’s well-worn
landscape. In my view Ghost Bath are simply going from strength to
strength, and Starmourner is just as oddly addictive as Moonlover was.
I can’t stop listening to this. I can’t stop enjoying this."