Monday, 22nd January 2018. 7:27:23am ET
Reviews CD Reviews Gothic GPKISM- Atheos


ARTIST: GPKISM

ALBUM: Atheos

LABEL: Darkest Labyrinth

REVIEWER: Matthew J.

DATE: 2-3-09

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GPKISM has come a long way in the past year. Now a duo, with androgynous project founder Gothique Prince Ken on vocals and programming and Kiwamu, best known as founder of Japanese gothic act Blood, on guitars, the the band's work has improved by leaps and bounds since the release of their promising but somewhat repetitive debut EP. Although fans who have heard that release will recognize such familiar elements as a predisposition for baroque harpsichord interludes and energized trance beats, the overall sound is far deeper and more dynamic. Ken's programming is more complex, his synth patterns less predictable; though trance is still a big influence, he's gotten much better at incorporating it with classical elements like choir pads, violins, and the ever-present harpsichord, which is now fully integrated with the songs instead of simply bookending them. He's also improved his singing, expanding his range on both an emotional and technical level; on title track "Atheos," he's aggressive, his voice rasping through distortion effects, while "Abaddon" sees him crooning with an unexpected tenderness. Likewise, Kiwamu shows off his guitar prowess to full effect here, his playing ranging from the sharp-edged chords of "Thanatosis" to the death rock squeal of "Infernum" to the progressive metal riffs of "Sublimis." A powerful blend of industrial enthusiasm, baroque mood, and dance floor adrenaline, this release sees GPKISM, for perhaps the first time, making music that truly lives up to their darkly glamorous image. An impressive improvement upon previous recordings, it's bound to make a big impact in the gothic and visual kei scenes.

Visit the Darkest Labyrinth website at http://darkestlabyrinth.jp/ for more information.


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