Limerence is Brian Reis’ post-rock side project. Here on his latest album Ghost Kingdom, Reis explores “love, longing, loss and things left unsaid” and everything in-between. As a guitarist of black metal/doom metal band SKYEATER, he has had the chance to tour up and down the West Coast, playing with such bands as Dispirit, Trapped Within Burning Machinery, Xasthur and Haunter, among others. Ghost Kingdom has some underlining similarities with SKYEATER, mainly that both projects draw inspiration from Godspeed You! Black Emperor, but it seems in certain instances that the three tracks on his latest record principally goes on a trajectory of its own, getting lost in mellower moments and leaning heavily on layers of reverberating guitars. The sound that then surrounds you is filled with melancholy. Reis lets such moods and melodies seep in, giving audiences some time to really immerse themselves in these artistic soundscapes.
Ghost Kingdom starts off with the title track “Ghost Kingdom,” where guitars slowly evolve in a dream-like manner. The vibe feels melancholic, casting a haunting light as guitars and programmed drums settles into a moving groove. The guitars are shimmering and there is hope in the midst of all this somberness. The reverb was a huge factor here as Reis ups the distortion and fuzz factor.
Sparse guitar riffs sound out here at first on “Through The Fields I’ll Follow.” Then the groove slowly builds and builds with layers of beats. The sound had a hypnotic quality to it as the overlapping guitars grew in sound.
Some moody synths start out “Unspoken” that right away sends out an edgy ambiance. As some mood-driven synths sound out, some more minimalistic guitars reel in the vibe. As the volume of this track grows louder and louder, the sound becomes more immediate. Though still taking its time in evolving, there was a dark pulse to this song that made it feel edgier and with a more dramatic flair. The sound of piano keys also makes an appearance here. It is easy to get lost in the sounds as the EP finishes with this resonating and melancholic closer.
Reis aptly enough names his EP Ghost Kingdom, and indeed, these tracks do feel ghostly, with an eerie and haunting vibe accompanying mood-driven guitars to the march of programmed beats. Reis is really able to draw out the sound, especially on “Through The Fields I’ll Follow” and “Unspoken” where the tracks are lengthier. With a meandering buildup, at the center of these songs is a melancholy mood, a type of melancholy that shrouds these songs like a heavy blanket, imbuing these tracks with a whole lot of mood and atmosphere. Though I thought Reis did a good job with the guitars, it would probably do the EP more justice if he had more people on board on the project. Perhaps using a real drummer instead of digitalized beats would help enhance his music and get him to the sound he was going for. Other than that, the dream-like instances really spoke to me and made me really feel like I was a part of the same dream. This seems like a good direction for the artist and I look forward to seeing more in a future release soon.
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