Album Review – Ghost Horizon / The Erotics of Disgust EP (2017)

Four distinct compositions that will pierce into your mind and soul in a beautiful way, brought forth by a musician that definitely knows how to transform his deepest feelings into great music.

If you’re an admirer of the most obscure and melancholic forms of Melodic and Atmospheric Black Metal, I have some very good news for you. Critically acclaimed Post-Black Metal act Ghost Horizon is back with a brand new EP, titled The Erotics of Disgust, a follow-up (but with a considerably different sounding) to the band’s previous EP Astral Possessions, released in 2016.  This time around, this Phoenix-based project consists of founder Dan Stollings on vocals and all stringed instruments, and newcomer “Frog” Magus (Norse) on drums, who together brought into being four distinct compositions that will pierce into your soul and crush your feelings in a beautiful way.

Dan commented that the EP “has been waiting in the darkness for quite a while now – it’s been completed for months. It’s been hard to let this EP into the world, because in a lot of ways, I’m sharing some pretty deep emotions that I would never talk about otherwise. I’ve been through a lot of ups and downs in the process of its creation, and I think that’s reflected pretty heavily in the music. The decision to do the vocals myself was also a part of this realization that in order to portray exactly what I’m thinking, I need to use my own voice. Nothing on this album is perfect. I didn’t want it to be perfect. At first I went into writing with the mentality that this will be the best produced thing I’ve ever done, but after finishing the vocals, I realized this thing needs to be raw. And so it was.” After reading such powerful words by Dan, I’m sure you’re more than curious to listen to The Erotics of Disgust, but once again let me warn you that the music might be too dark for the average listener.

Radiant Eyes presents an introspective beginning for this new phase of Ghost Horizon, gradually morphing into a dark amalgamation of Blackened Doom and Post-Black Metal with hints of progressiveness enhancing the song’s depressive sonority. Moreover, “Frog” Magus does an amazing job on drums, maintaining the song’s dense rhythm flowing smoothly. In So Hollow, not only Dan surprises us with his clean vocals supported by a gentle ambience, but the song’s lyrics also prove that he’s definitely a skillful poet of darkness (“You can take it all / Everything we know / You can break it all / You chose a path I cannot follow / You left a heart in me so hollow / Changing skies above / Breaking hearts below / On again / True love / Off again / Bruised love”). This is modern and gripping Atmospheric Black Metal that brings at the same time peace and hopelessness to our hearts, making us eager for more of the music by Ghost Horizon.

Following a similar pattern to the previous song, This Forever Flow also presents delicate guitars and bass lines together with the Doom Metal-inspired beats by “Frog”, with its last piece getting heavier due to the harsh growls by Dan without losing its core subtlety. Besides, how not to get touched by its profound lyrics (“Fading from my heart is the will to be one / Fear in my words – last words to my love / Fire fading quickly, your lips have left me cold / The ending of a romance with the ending left untold”)? Lastly, featuring guitarist and composer Tyler Allen on guest vocals, Ghost Horizon deliver a full-bodied darkened composition bursting with anguish, despair and melancholy entitled Whispers, with its Black Metal riffs and blast beats bringing an extra dosage of obscurity to the overall musicality. In my humble opinion, it’s the best and most complete of the four songs of the EP, the type of music I would like to see Dan explore even more with his future releases.

In summary, although many people have a lot of difficulties to talk about their deepest feelings, it seems that Dan has simply mastered how to express his own feelings through the music by Ghost Horizon. However, you have to be very open-minded and absorb each second of The Erotics of Disgust in order to fully understand the whole message delivered by Dan this time, letting your mind and soul minutely merge with the music found on this fine album. And you can always get to know Ghost Horizon in more detail through their Facebook page and listen to their music on Spotify, as well as purchase your copy of The Erotics of Disgust on BandCamp, at the Tridroid Records’ webshop, on Cd Baby, on Amazon or on iTunes. The Erotics of Disgust is certainly not Dan’s last stint with his Ghost Horizon, which means there’s still a lot to come from such distinct act, and I can’t wait to see what’s next.

Best moments of the album: Whispers.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2017 Independent

Track listing
1. Radiant Eyes 4:11
2. So Hollow 4:05
3. This Forever Flow 5:01
4. Whispers 4:34

Band members
Dan Stollings – all stringed instruments, vocals
“Frog” Magus – drums

Guest musician
Tyler Allen – additional vocals on “Whispers”

Album Review – Ghost Horizon / Astral Possession EP (2016)

An excellent Black Metal release exhaling agony, torment and depression, crafted by a promising American duo that has all it takes to succeed in the world of extreme music.


Album CoverStraight from the city of Phoenix, located in the southwestern state of Arizona, in the United States, comes a band that aims at bringing pitch-black darkness not only to their precious Valley of the Sun, but also to the rest of the world with their unconditional rage and hopelessness. This wrathful band is called Ghost Horizon, and the quality of the music they offer us metalheads during the 12 minutes of Melodic and Atmospheric Black Metal found in their debut EP, entitled Astral Possession, is undoubtedly beyond what anyone could expect from such a fresh new act.

Formed in 2015 by ex-Severed Receptors and Psychobliss guitarist Dan Stollings, the obscurity crafted by Ghost Horizon will definitely please fans of bands such as Wolves in the Throne Room, Woods of Ypres and Alcest, among other eccentric Extreme Metal groups. Moreover, when you listen to the music in Astral Possession, you can rest assured you’re listening to truthful music and not to any type of shenanigans many bands tend to deliver just to sound badass or evil. “Ghost Horizon, to me, is everything I ever wanted in a band. I can express both my anger/depression and happiness to whatever degree I wish, while also allowing the two opposite emotions to marry.”, commented Daniel on the direction of the band.

Ghost Horizon pic2The ominous intro in Pale Apparition warms up the listener for a brutal fusion of Doom and Black Metal effectively fired by the duo, with the desperate vocals by Uræus being exactly what the music needs to be more imposing. In addition, string-man Daniel keeps delivering flammable guitar and bass lines until the music flows into a melancholic ending. Spectral Threnody gets even more somber, sounding like Blackened Doom with deeper growls and a sorrowful ambience where Uræus does a superb job on drums with all his tempo changes and blast beats. And lastly, the demonic composition Astral Possession (The Cold Years Unearthed) closes the EP  in a powerful way, bringing forward modern but at the same time raw Black Metal perfect for fans of old school extreme music who are looking for something new in their lives. It’s indeed a feast of classic Black Metal riffs by Daniel which do not sound outdated at all, while Uræus keeps spreading electric darkness through his devilish vocals.

All the agony and torment provided in the form of extreme music by Ghost Horizon can be relished at their Facebook page and SoundCloud, and Astral Possession can pretty soon be purchased through their BandCamp page or on Amazon. Put differently, if you love extreme music exhaling anger, depression, anguish and sorrow all at the same time in a solid and convincing way, don’t waste your time and go check the high-end Black Metal by this dynamic American duo right now.

Best moments of the album: Astral Possession (The Cold Years Unearthed).

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2016 Independent

Track listing
1. Pale Apparition 4:31
2. Spectral Threnody 3:08
3. Astral Possession (The Cold Years Unearthed) 4:08

Band members
Uræus – vocals, drums, additional instruments
Daniel Stollings – guitars, bass