1) What A Horrible Night To Have A Curse
2) Spiders And Flies
4) Blood On Her Gown
5) Pyromantic Eyes
When you look at the horrorpunk genre of music, there are always two bands that immediately come to mind to any fan as being at the forefront. The first is almost always The Misfits, which makes sense given that they have been around for over 30 years. Whether it be the versions fronted by Glenn Danzig or Michale Graves, or the watered down commercialized version led by Jerry Only, most people think of The Misfits as the main band in the genre. But then, there is the mighty Blitzkid. From the late 90s all the way through their final farewell tour in 2012, Blitzkid was an example of everything great about the genre. The talents of TB Monstrosity and Argyle Goolsby, as well as the other rotating members of the band throughout the years became fan favorites through their several albums, and relentless touring, as well as being one of the most fan-friendly bands around.
After the bands disbanding in 2012, Monstrosity went his own way, stepping away from the genre, while Goolsby continued to work within the horrorpunk confines. Argyle has released two solo EPs, as well as having done a 7″split with fellow West Virginian horrorpunk band The Big Bad. At the 2013 Ghouls Night Out festival he debuted his solo project live with the help of a who’s who of the genre, including Shadow Windhawk and former-Blitzkid guitarist and Darrow Chemical Company mastermind JV Bastard. At this year’s forthcoming Ghouls Night Out, he will be debuting his new band, under the name of Silent Horror. Given that we are coming up on the debut of his new band, what better time to go and revisit his solo works?
Full disclosure up front, Blitzkid are my favorite band, and I unabashedly love the talents of the band members, as well as their other projects, horrorpunk or not. I have had A Dream Not Quite Remembered since its release in mid-2012, and it has always found its way onto playlists, so I have been steadily listening to it since then.
The EP begins with a very short intro track (only 7 seconds!) entitled What A Horrible Night To Have A Curse. It is simply sample from the introduction scene of the original NES classic, Castlevania (you can read The Deadhouse‘s Arcane Arcade review of Castlevania here). It works well as an intro track, but is barely a song and should be recognized as such.
The first real track on the album is Spiders And Flies. The song was originally written as a Blitzkid track, which can be evidenced by the existence of the band performing the track live back in 2009. These videos can easily be found on YouTube. The song itself is a fantastic tune written from the perspective of Renfield, the man servant of the titular vampire in Dracula. It’s a fast relentless song that helps spotlight Goolsby‘s vocal style, all focusing on Renfield’s revelation that his master is not all he assumed him to be, while waiting in Seward’s Sanitarium. If you’re a classic horror buff, it almost seems like the lyrics could very easily be something actually written by Dwight Frye‘s rendition of Renfield in the 1931 version of Dracula.
The third track is another fast song, but is a tad more melodic. Baskerville is about well, the ages old Sherlock Holmes tale The Hound Of The Baskervilles. The track really gives you a chance to see the more melodic style of Goolsby‘s vocals and is certainly a standout track for the EP.
Up next, Argyle slows things down for Blood On Her Gown, the closest to a ballad that is offered on the EP. Once again we get a little more of his melodic stylings. The song picks up towards the end and is without a doubt the most accessible track on the album. If you have friends who you are looking to get into horrorpunk, this is definitely the kind of song that can help show off that the genre is more than just quick riffs and lyrics ripped and inspired by classic horror movies.
The pace is picked back up for Pyromantic Eyes, the closing track. It’s another great example of the man’s songwriting skills, and is arguably the strongest track on the album. The worst thing about the song is that it flies by so quickly (as most punk songs are ought to do) and with it being the closing track, you realize that you are left wanting more. Given that this song, to the best of my knowledge at least, was written specifically for this EP as opposed to being left over from the Blitzkid years, gives it the edge as the stand out track on the album.
The artwork for the EP also continues the tradition started in Blitzkid of using a still from a classic horror film. This shows, much as the inclusion of Spiders And Flies does, that Argyle Goolsby is not afraid to embrace his past while also moving forward into the future.
Overall, A Dream Not Quite Remembered is a fantastic debut for the former Blitzkid bass-slinger, and while it is only 4 real tracks in length, you get the impression that the man has much more to offer to music. Stay tuned as a review of his follow up EP, Under The Witness Stars, will be coming soon to The Deadhouse.
If you are given the opportunity, make sure to check out this years Ghouls Night Out Festival, happening on August 9th at The Rock Shop in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Tickets are currently on sale at the Ghouls Night Out Store, where Argyle Goolsby will be debuting his new band Silent Horror, in addition to peformances by The Big Bad, The Genitorturers, Black Cat Attack, The Independents, Reckless Dodgers, The Graveyard Boulevard and many more!
You can also pick up a copy of A Dream Not Quite Remembered via digital formats from your standard places like iTunes or Xbox Music.