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Sigh - Ghastly Funeral Theatre CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.22 | 13 ratings

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3 stars Ghastly Funeral Theatre is an EP released in 1997 by the Japanese experimental extreme metal act Sigh. Itīs also my first really positive meeting with the band. Their debut album Scorn Defeat (1993) was primitive blackened thrash metal and not to my taste while their second album Infidel Art (1995) showed great promise but still lacked the final touch to really impress me. As far as I know Ghastly Funeral Theatre was released before Sighīs 1997 full-length release Hail Horror Hail. None of the songs on the EP appear on Hail Horror Hail, so that should make Ghastly Funeral Theatre a worthwhile investment even for the fans who already have the full-length album.

The basis in the music is blackened and rather simple thrash metal. The vocals are mostly extreme and raspy, but there are occasional clean sung passages. They are not very pretty though, but sounds rather desperate and out of tune ( on purpose that is). There are some very symphonic classical inspired keyboard sections in the music as well which gives the music a very interesting sound. Make no mistake though. This is not your everyday symphonic black metal band ( Dimmu Borgir, Cradle of Filth, Old Manīs Child) which is emphasised in the first song ( Shingontachikawa) after the classical orchestral keyboard intro. Shingontachikawa is a very eclectic song with many different styles incorporated. The basis is blackened thrash metal, but there are also a jazzy keyboard ( with saxophone sound) solo, handclaps, uh uh backing choirs, a seventies sounding bluesy guitar solo and a psychadelic rock part. On top of that thereīs also the obligatory classical inspired keyboard sections. Shingontachikawa pretty much tells the story of how eclectic and avant garde Ghastly Funeral Theatre is. There are six songs on the EP which has a playing time of 23:22 minutes. Three of the songs are experimental extreme metal songs ( Shingontachikawa, Doman Seman, Shikigami) while the remaining three songs ( Intro: Soushiki, Imiuta, Outro: Higeki) are classical inspired pieces for keyboard. Only Imiuta is a longer piece.

The musicianship is good and I want to give a special mention to Mirai Kawasshima for his sneering and aggressive vocal delivery but especially for his synth and programming skills which are excellent IMO.

The production is very good. Itīs not the kind of modern clean and edgy metal production ( Andy Sneap, Colin Richardson) that many metal bands prefer, but a more organic and muddy sound. You can hear that itīs actual people playing.

Ghastly Funeral Theatre is an excellent release from Sigh and Iīm tempted to give a 4 star rating, but Iīm not as impressed by Shikigami as I am about the two other main songs on the EP and it is the longest track with itīs 6:21 minutes and takes up 1/4 of the playing time on the EP. So my conclusion is that this is a great EP that deserves a big 3 star rating and a recommendation from me.

UMUR | 3/5 |


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