By merging merging a post-rock atmosphere and melodies with black metal vocals and guitars, Ghost Bath create a fascinating variation on the blackgaze sound. I’d almost say they were two sides of the same coin with Deafheaven, with both bands vastly expanding the borders of black metal in their own way.
When they released their debut in 2014, Ghost Bath were reported to be from China. It wasn’t until the following year, with the band receiving increased attention and popularity, that the story broke that they were actually from North Dakota. They had originally let the misinformation spread, as it added to the air of mystery surrounding them.
However their country of origin, it turns out, has no bearing on their music – which has continued to grow across three albums. To describe it as ‘post black’ to me doesn’t quite fit this wonderfully unique band. It’s almost like blackened post rock – it’s harsh, chilly, but with a soaring atmosphere and beautiful guitars.
And then there are the gentler moments, like pure atmosphere. They’re inviting, and comforting, and for me it just means when the big heavy kicks in I’m already invested and along for the ride. I hear the inherent beauty in the composition, because of those subtler moments.
And make no mistake, the music of Ghost Bath is fucking beautiful.