Tom Singer aka Ghost Seminar is an artist from Scotland who recently released his debut album entitled Asylum Rhetoric. The album contains thirteen songs that blend metal, industrial, electronica and alternative music.
The programming is creative but it is ultimately the distorted guitars and vocals that make the album something worthwhile to listen to. Singer’s voice is usually filled with more than just melancholy; in fact his delivery is more reminiscent of the dark, dismal, goth-inspired cover art.
The album kicks off with a song entitled “Ticking Time Bomb of the Head.” Percussive, scattered synths are put on the canvas only to be quickly bombarded by heavy guitars and vocals, As the song progressed Nine Inch Nails came to mind. Singer sounds nothing like Trent Reznor but the way he used synths to add to the percussive elements of the song was something that he shared with Reznor.
On “Petro” Singer creates shades of white noise that go from sounding jagged to mutating to warm pads. The song is a labyrinth of sound that introduces a number of unexpected but welcome elements. The song is largely vacant of vocals relying on the surplus of instrumental changes.
“Diablo” sounds like it could be a song for a cheesy horror film. Singer sings in what seems like tongues and I have to admit it wasn’t that scary. One of the highlights of the album was “Silk,” which contained a creative guitar riff and an infectious vocal performance. As the album came to a close “When 2 Souls Collide” was the last notable song.
This album took a lot of effort to get through. At thirteen songs and with all of them at around four-to-five minutes I had my fill. The album is largely hit or miss. Some of the songs show some talent and others sound too similar to other songs in the album. A solid effort not without a few pitfalls.
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