Sep 2011 08

Gothminister - Anima Inferna
Category: Industrial
Album: Anima Inferna
Stars: 4
Blurb: Gothminister’s latest sermon is sure to whip the congregation into a frenzy.


The fourth album from this Norwegian practitioner of gothic tinged, heavily guitar-laden dark industrial, Anima Inferna proves to be Gothminster’s strongest album to date. With a moniker that may be a little off-putting to many at first, it is a name that proves to be surprisingly spot-on in describing mastermind and founder Bjørn Alexander Brem’s commanding presence and grand theatrics in his performance and in his music.

Somewhat in the same vein as highly visual acts like Lordi, Gwar, or even older Marilyn Manson, Gothminister also builds off a gimmick which bleeds into its music, frequently dealing with subject matter relating to hell, demons, the occult, and other stereotypically dark subject matter. However, to Gothminister’s credit, the gimmick is played completely straight and it can sometimes be hard to discern if the work should be taken with a grain of salt. Serious or not, Brem’s downright stunning charisma oozes through every lyric leaving no doubt about his ability. Running the gamut from almost death metal level harshness, to belting out a powerful choruses in a crystal clear and harmonized yell, Gothminister is a very vocal-centric act and songs like “Juggernaut,” “6/6,” and “Stonehenge” best showcase the amazing range and downright hypnotic quality Brem’s voice can take on. Acting like gasoline on an already raging fire, Gothminister’s strong guitar riffs, heavy beat, subtle synth, and strategically placed symphonic elements amplify the vocals acting as perfect punctuation marks to the Gothminister’s homilies. There are still weakness to be found however such as occasions where Gothmisister’s synth work falls a little flat or feels a bit cheesy, like the bridging synth line in “Solitude,” and the female vocals in tracks like “Liar” can sometimes feel a bit phoned in, especially when held up next to Brem’s imposing performance. Thankfully these issues are generally just minor sour patches in what is overall a glorious feast.

Though Gothminister has had stronger singles on previous albums, Anima Inferna is easily its best all-around release so far. It is a powerful showcase of Gothminister’s magnetism and ability to write powerful, infectious music that sticks with the listener despite its occasional faults. Understandably, some will likely take issue with the gimmick and occasionally cheesy moments that may spring up, but those willing to relax, roll with it and simply bask in Gothminister’s glory will quickly find themselves very willing converts.

Track list:

  1. Stonehenge
  2. Liar
  3. Juggernaut
  4. 6/6
  5. Solitude
  6. The Beauty of Fanatism
  7. Anima Inferna
  8. Fade
  9. The Beast
  10. Hell Opens the Gate
  11. Liar (Goatmanifest Remix)

Gothminister Website
Gothminister MySpace
Danse Macabre Website
Danse Macabre MySpace

Purchase at…
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3


Trubie Turner (Flexei)

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