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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Living Sacrifice -- Ghost Thief

 photo MI0003664369_zps39760b80.jpg

Man, that was a good sandwich. Now, where was I?
The cover art, along with nostalgic memories of The Hammering Process, psyched me up to purchase Living Sacrifice's Ghost Thief. On first listen, Ryan Clark's fiesty guest vocals on opening track, "Screwtape," pumped me up even more. Unfortunately, the rest of the album just sort of happened. I listened, but felt like I was only hearing background noise.
Ghost Thief just happens. Living Sacrifice are extremely competent musicians, and the songs on Ghost Thief are competently played, culminating in a vast stew of mixed-metal genres. Unfortunately, despite the ingredients, that stew just tastes like chicken broth. Outside of track four, the passionate "Straw Man," nothing about the rest of the album sticks--the band rock hard, Bruce Fitzhugh growls his guts out, nothing is bad, but nothing stands out, and then Ghost Thief is over. The strangely muffled production doesn't help, nor does the lack of Living Sacrifice's trademark percussion work. After multiple listens, grasping desperately for something to hold on to, all I can remember are tracks one and four, and that sweet, sweet cover art.

2013 Solid State Records
1. Screwtape 5:35
2. Ghost Thief 4:41
3. The Reaping 3:26
4. Straw Man 3:46
5. Sudden 4:46
6. Mask 4:49
7. American Made 5:26
8. Before 4:31
9. Your War 3:56
10. Despair 4:19

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