Staff Rating

4.95/5

User Rating

5/5

Ghost Key - Winter (2013)

Connor_McGaha   (38 reviews)

Posted: 03/25/2013 | Comments: 0 | Rate:

From start to finish, boys and girls, this EP rages through 4 tracks, clocking in at almost 12 minutes--12 minutes filled with anger, fear, depression, and, finally, catharsis. Passionate, poetic lyrics drench the album, leaving the final seconds of the album soaked with emotion, and wholly welcome to the listener. An incredible debut (except for one split previous), and an excellent show of musicianship, Winter (2013) is a prophetic name, and makes damn sure that Ghost Key will be a household name by the end of the year.

"Past.Present" starts out with an intense, vitriolic guitar riff, and raspy, throaty vocals coming in almost immediately, "My mind is a prison. And this is my Hell." A journey through a range of emotion, from anger and fury to depression and apathy, this song is a haunting, evocative track that will bring the most diehard stoic to their knees. "That dream catcher was worthless." Shivers sent down the spines of every listener.

Beginning with Envy/The Blue Letter-esque delay, "Fulfillment" is a beautiful, brooding track that redefines the boundaries of emotional hardcore and reinstating the connotation in the minds of listeners: emotional hardcore is just as "heavy" as traditional hardcore--the only difference is that it's truly beautiful art. The lyrics are scatterbrained, but instead of being "esoteric," they're the kind of panic attack scrawls that I've written down myself. I get it. The frantic, anxious closer, "Just hold me close."

The third track on the album, "Stones," is easily the most emotional, passion-soaked, hardcore song I've ever heard. From the dissonant, delayed guitar, to the furious, gasping vocals, this song is one of the few hardcore songs released in the last 5 years to actually, physically make me cry. Every time I listen to this song, just like every time I read Sylvia Plath's "Daddy," I weep like a child. This song makes me want to sleep in a cocoon of my own tears and spit, and listen to this song on repeat until I pass out or die. However, if you know anything about my personal preferences, you know that this is the highest compliment I could give any band, ever. "If I ever learned anything, never put your faith God, because look what he's done to you." Weep, you fuckers.

"Rewritten" is the gorgeous, painful, closing track on "Winter (2013)," and it lives up to every expectation that the band has carried thus far. Pulling out all the stops, Ghost Key takes the best aspects of their playing style and implements them into this song, utilizing delay perfectly, and layering the haunting vocals at the end, "I'm sorry it was you."

This album is the best emotional hardcore album of 2013, if not the last 5 years. Why, you might be asking, did I give the album a 4.95/5, then? Because I want "Stones" to be the closer to the album, and I want it to be hours long. It's that good. And that, boys and girls, is my only beef. Pick up this album on cassette, digital download, buy their merch, be their friend... Whatever. Just support the shit out of these guys. Incredible.

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