Oakland's Ghoul are a mysterious bunch, going by pseudonyms, apparently hailing from Creepsylvania (a quick Google map check tells me this isn't actually a real place), and looking like they just stepped off a 70's horror flick set. Sounds crazy. And it kinda is, but what else would you expect from a band with a Kill-bot and members (supposedly) of that band of mad characters who profess themselves to be doctors, Impaled? Recent offering Transmission Zero - the bands first full length in five or so years - is insanely good fun and a solid crossover thrash filled opus. Kicking off with "The Lunatic Hour," a four minute riff laden, catchy as hell instrumental piece, Transmission Zero is all wailing solos and tight pummeling drum work. The pace barely lets up for the taut forty minute run-time, only slumping a tad during the eight minute slow burning "Morning Of The Mezmetron."
Previous album, Splatterthrash, was aptly named - that title telling you the basics of Ghoul. Thrash they have in spades, punky riffs filter through with even a gang vocal to be heard on occasion during "Off With Their Heads" and "Transmission Zero" and a hint of death metal vocal style perforates the record. Their lyrics have an overarching horror theme and that's carried throughout their work and ultimately into this latest album. Songs tell somewhat of a story, the four heroes going into battle against a nemesis, it's as though this could be a soundtrack to a gore filled B-movie of yore. It's pretty cool if you have an interest in that particular genre, perhaps Ghoul should look into making this into a short or some such?
Ghoul aren't breaking down any genre barriers here, but Transmission Zero is an enjoyably boisterous journey through the curious minds of Digestor, Dissector, Fermentor and Cremator. It's raucous, punchy and all-out entertaining - if blood-splattered stories are your thing. And why wouldn't they be?
7.5 / 10
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