GHOUL CULT – Ghoul Cult (12 Inch Vinyl)

GHOUL CULT - Ghoul Cult


Release date: October 25, 2004

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From Asker, Norway hails Ghoul Cult, a band that has to be one of the most obscure acts given attention at Metal Express to date. The band, which at the moment is a one-man project pursued by a Johnny Tombtrasher (dig that nick), who, according to the promo sheet, takes care of drums and vocal duties … guitarist and bassist needed, then.

Despite the rather ironic tone above, Ghoul Cult is definitely a band/project to count on when it comes to catchy, groovy, Death/Thrash ‘n’ Roll. The band has released two critically acclaimed demos before this album (which is released on 12 inch LP only). Initiation of the Cult and Night of a Thousand Ghouls are the titles of those prior efforts, respectively, and the latter was also re-recorded with two additional tracks to form the band’s debut album, released on Faceless.Nameless.Shapeless Records, a German Underground Label hosted by the very dedicated Marcus “Torpedo” Adler.

The promo sheet lists Bathory, Hellhammer/Celtic Frost, Venom, Sarcofago, and Master’s Hammer as influences, and Darkthrone and maybe Wrath Of The Tyrant-era Emperor should be added to that list, as the young Norsemen without a doubt have lent an ear to these Extreme Metal innovators. The riffs have that rolling, dirty quality to them (which Nocturno Culto made {in-}famous), the simple, yet effective drumming recalls of the early, unadulterated eras of both bands, and the mostly spoken, yet dirty, vocals tend to take on an Ihsahn-like quality during the more atmospheric parts.

The Bathory influence is also evident during songs like “When The Bells Chime,” for example, where the melodies have that cool, Nordic, touch. The dark and dirty riffing is overall rather on the simplistic side, but trend towards more technical trails in several parts, like the ending section in the 9-minute epic, “Dirge for a Funeral Age,” and the closing track “Storming Through the Bastions,” which also features some upfront bass melodies that almost reminds of Death with Steve DiGiorgio. This short and to-the-point track also stands forth as the album’s Thrash Metal alibi, to some extent, together with the insanely groovy “Night of a Thousand Ghouls.”

Still it is the opening trio of “Infernal Upheaval,” “Trionfo Della Morthe (in Aghast Reverie),” and “Fucked by the Living Dead,” which to the uttermost extent represents the album’s soul and core … Dark, Gloomy, and Heavy Rockin’. Wrapped in a truly lo-fi sound -– which fits the material perfectly -– and with sufficient musicianship to get the message through, this has to be recommended to every Hardcore Metalhead. Ghoul Cult is a true hidden gem -– and this album HAS to reach the masses someday. Killer stuff!


  • Torgeir P. Krokfjord

    Torgeir was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. After hearing Malmsteen's "Vengeance" on a guitar mag CD at the age of 12 or 13, he began doing hopeless interpretations of Yngwie licks and it just took off from there. After shorter stints at other zines he was snatched to Metal Express Radio in 2003. Alongside Yngwie, Savatage, WASP, Symphony X, Blind Guardian, Emperor, Arch Enemy, In Flames, Opeth, Motörhead, Manowar, and Queensrÿche are a quick list of musical faves. Torgeir is also guitarist in the Heavy/Prog/Thrash outfit Sarpedon.

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