The Dead Matter - Cemetery Gates
Just in time for Halloween, the boys from Midnight Syndicate (Gavin Goszka and Edward Douglas respectfully) have dug up (Get it? Dug Up? I crack myself up sometimes!) some new material to frighten the daylights out of us. Before we sink our fangs into this new delicious dish of sonic scare-fest, I just want to throw a bone out (ok I'll stop, seriously) for all of you who don't know about these two talented lads. This is their tenth release of gothic/horror soundtracks that can be heard all over the country in Haunted Houses, Universal's Halloween Horror Nights, computer games, mainstream television shows etc... Their music could best be described as soundtracks for the imagination; to films and stories that you dream up even if the album has a theme to it. Many of my RPG (role playing game) buddies love to use Gavin and Edward's music for horror-themed games.
On "The Dead Matter - Cemetery Gates" this is original music inspired by the themes from (now stay with me on this) the upcoming movie "The Dead Matter" which they are also scoring as well. To make it more interesting, the film is an updated version of the same name, which Edward directed and did the score for several years ago. Some of the music from the original film went on albums such "Born of The Night and Realm Of Shadows". Throughly confused? Don't be. "Cemetery Gates" is the new album and not the soundtrack to "The Dead Matter" (however, there are three songs from the soundtrack included on this disc.) Anyway, now that we have that all laid out on the table and everyone's completely straight with this, (Right folks?) we can move on to what this review is really about, the music.
As you can imagine, Ed and Gavin have mastered the art of creating fear, suspense, and chilling atmospheres in their music after all this time, and "Cemetery Gates" is no exception. It's a delightful terrorfest of what awaits in the dark. One of the things I would like to point out, is how several of the tracks have a similarity to John Carpenter's early film scores. The minimalistic piano lines with the underlying keyboard passages payed homage to his work so well. Maybe it's just the first time I could really describe a part of their work which has always been there, but could never put my finger on what it reminded me of. It shows how much you can do with very little. Then there are the more dynamic, bombastic parts to counteract the quiet moments coming at you when you least expect it. As with most of their albums, each piece is a part of a bigger picture, and best listened to on dark nights, in the quiet gloom when the full effect of the music can take you to places that you dare not venture normally. I can see why so many Halloween attractions use Ed and Gavin's music, it's just that good. So, if you don't have any of their music, you can find it at Hot Topic, and several on-line stores as well. The dead have arisen, they are walking, shambling, full of hunger, coming through the cemetery gates, coming for YOU!
- Craig Harvey