Iknowaghost – ‘Deviations’ Album Review

Deathcore… Hmm, when I was a student (a long, long time ago) a friend and I spent an evening trying to create the most outlandish made-up genres and I am pretty sure we mentioned deathcore – what a meaningless epithet!! That said, Iknowaghost (billed as deathcore, hence the digression) are a powerful, heavy band who combine hypnotic riffs, guttural vocals and thunderous drums to great effect. Whether they are (or are not) deathcore is beyond me, but they surely do kick up a gleeful racket!

Grabbing the listener’s throat from the off, their punked-up racket combines the ferocity of Hatebreed and Hot water music with the fast-paced brutality of Isis and any number of death metal acts. Subtle it ain’t, but then that’s not entirely the point! ‘Walker texas Ranger’ continues the torrent of sonic abuse (ha – see what I did there?!) with a furious stop-start riff backing the none-more-evil vocals. It’s a glorious racket and one that’s guaranteed to have the mosh-pit heaving when a tour comes round. Until then expect to be head-banging in your bedroom till your neck snaps – these guys are no light weights! ‘Ambience’ is rather less aptly titled than you might imagine – admittedly it is a step off the pedal for these purveyors of heavy music, but it’s still mighty powerful. The annoyingly difficult to type ‘Albuquerque where art thou?’ is a heavier take, with the guitar and vocals building into one powerful, punk/metal froth destined to lay waste to all in its path.

Having battered the listener senseless with the previous tracks, ‘where did you get those clothes’ continues the trend with a brutal, chugging riff that is straight out of the early Sepultura/Pantera vein of song-writing – it’s possibly one of the best tracks on the record and certainly got my head moving; the multiple tempos and brutal guitar interplay is definitely a highlight.  Final track ‘from what we believe’ closes this brief album on a powerful high with the Midland-based noise freaks giving it their all one last time before the disc comes clattering to a halt.

Ultimately I know a ghost have created an excellent heavy album. Short and to the point it never outstays its welcome preferring simply to seek and destroy with every song set for maximum impact. True, the band blend hardcore punk (certainly in the vocal stakes) to extreme metal but tagging it with such a nonsensical genre title is surely counterproductive, as likely to turn off the metal fans who are most likely to get a kick out of this as anything. Nonetheless you can’t keep a good band down and Iknowaghost deserve to gain greater recognition from this strong debut.

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