Ghost Brigade @Hullu Pullo, Vaasa 20.3

Soo, last weekend was quite awesome. Ghost Brigade in Vaasa on Friday and Devin Townsend in Seinäjoki on Saturday, and I had the privilege to be present at both gigs. But since this site is devoted to Finnish metal music, I will not say anything else about the DTP than that I was in raptures several days afterwards.

A local band, Slivers of Silence, opened for Ghost Brigade on Friday night. Unfortunately, I missed some songs, which made it a little difficult to form an opinion of them. They play what you could perhaps call melancholic metal, with both clean vocals and growl. What I found impressing was the versatility of the vocalist Jarmo Panula, who was able to combine clean singing with harsh vocals á la Moonsorrow and deeper growls that reminds me of Insomnium. The other guys of Slivers of Silence also gave proof of good musicianship. All the songs are perhaps not really spot on yet, but I definitely believe this is a band with potential.

Ghost Brigade is one of those bands that are very difficult to classify according to genre, but that also makes them interesting. They combine slow, melodic parts including clean guitars and clean vocals with really heavy stuff with growl. I like the fact that they dare to play the softer songs live. It is quite a ballsy move in my opinion, and many bands choose not to play more than one or a couple of such songs live. However, Ghost Brigade can handle it, and the setlist does indeed mirror the band’s discography.

1. Wretched Blues
2. Aurora
3. Minus Side
4. Into the Black Light
5. Stones and Pillars
6. Breakwater
7. Clawmaster
8. Electra Complex
9. Divine Act of Lunacy
10. Elämä on tulta

11. Deliberately

Still, I found myself more attracted to the heavier and faster songs, such as the opening song “Wretched Blues”, “Divine Act of Lunacy” and the almost hypnotic “Elämä on Tulta”, which is very convenient to play as the last song of the regular set, before the encore, that is. “Clawmaster” is a song which really shows the band’s wide range, and for me, this song was the highlight of the night. The encore consisted of only one song, which I found a little disappointing since I believe they have been ending with “Suffocated” lately, and I really would have liked to hear that song.

Anyway, I cannot really find anything else to complain about in the band’s performance, and it was about time I got to see these guys live. Ghost Brigade perform their songs very well live, and they seem to be really into what they are doing. Also, the band keeps it simple and does not include a bunch of external effects and such. In other words; what you see is what you hear, and Ghost Brigade is what you get.


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