Ghost Avenue

01. Impact
02. Escape
03. The Prison
04. Time Traveller
05. Affection
06. Dancing With the Devil
07. Construction
08. The Edge of Darkness
09. Collateral Damage
10. The Ace

Kim Sandvik - Vocals
Øystein Wiik - Guitar
Petter Lein - Drums
Magnus Liseter - Bass
André Berger - Guitar

The Engraving (2010)
Ghost Avenue (2013)



Released 2017-02-03
Reviewed 2017-02-16


pitch black records

Today I take a walk on the Norwegian Ghost Avenue to find out if there is anything there to make an impact on the world of music. What has happened is that the radio silence has been broken and the aliens have come, along with them widespread panic and chaos. A resistance has to form, etc. and I do mean it very predictably in terms of both storytelling and music. It is kind of like Independence Day in heavy metal format where the story is told by a man who probably stood way too close to too many buildings pulverised by the alien attack. The concrete dust didn’t do his vocal chords a service if we say so.

“I thought I was going to the Ghost Avenue but it seems I am tripping down Memory Lane” is what I thought when listening to this album the first time. And that could have been an opportunity for them, they could have changed to Memory Lane instead of Ghost Avenue when they changed their name from Ghost probably in order to avoid being mixed up with the more commercially successful band from a neighbouring country. The sound is very eighties heavy metal with twin guitars, classic riffs, galloping bass lines and hard hitting choruses – nothing we haven’t heard before and it is certainly not tripping down Arjen Lucassen Street. What we get is inspired by the classics from thirty years ago, almost borrowed from them and there are no surprises on the album’s ten tracks.

I think they play it too safe, they take the roads most travelled and the end result is a very familiar feeling album, and you do know what they say about familiarity? It breeds contempt. And while the music sounds pretty good, the cover looks good and it all feels well constructed it is hard to really feel moved by it, taken over by it. It is not an album you want to select and listen to many times. The story is just too predictable and I think they are only looking at engaging the ones that loves walking down memory lane on a daily basis, and I am not one of those even though I have to do it many times as most albums seems to be of that variety. So, if you feel that heavy metal of the eighties is the best invention ever, you will have a good new acquisition in this album – it will make an impact for you.

It wasn’t a walk down the avenue I thought it would be and although I am a huge sci-fi enjoyer I think I save my musical sci-fi investments for something that appears far more exciting and will see the light of day a few months from now. The memory lane isn’t really my thing, I walk it too often and way too often I hear albums and bands that don’t really have any ideas of their own but only play a variety on an already established concept, just like Ghost avenue does here. Sure, their opening title track makes tiny impact but if they really want to make an impact with their music they should start walking down the ghost avenues rather than just use that moniker.






Label: Pitch Black Records
Three similar bands: Dio/Iron Maiden/Metal Church
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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