About Ghost Bath
Ghost Bath is an American blackgaze/post-metal/depressive black metal group from North Dakota. Their sound balances melodic, tremolo-picked guitars, blastbeats, unclean and screamed vocals, melodic interludes, and explosive dynamics. Funeral, their 2014 independently issued debut long-player wed that sound to gothic atmospherics and richly layered electronic textures. 2016's Moonlover was simultaneously more aggressive and progressive. It juxtaposed shorter blackgaze compositions with longer, more labyrinthine constructs that walked a tightrope between formal and post-metal structures and sonic chaos. 2017's Starmourner tightened all of those elements into a startlingly accessible meld of dark melody, atmospherics, folk and prog harmonic elements, and subtle electronics woven into an already ambitious sound signature. Self Loather appeared in 2021.
Ghost Bath was established in 2012, and initially claimed that they were based out of Chongqing, China instead of their hometown of Minot, North Dakota. Employing a lethal mix of depressive black metal, ambient shoegaze, and progressive post-metal, the band's debut full-length album, Funeral, was issued in 2014 via Pest Productions. 2015's well-received Moonlover saw the group make the move to German label Northern Silence Productions, and as their stature in the extreme metal community grew and spread across the globe, it was revealed that their Chinese origin story was a hoax.
Frontman Dennis Mikula later explained that "We refused to correct people because we do not wish to put actual faces onto our music. It is our wish as a band to connect to all human beings." Ghost Bath's publicity stunt polarized metal fans; depending on who one spoke to, they were either the most righteously hyped metal band on the scene or the most reviled.
The band signed to Nuclear Blast for Starmourner, their third long-player in 2017. Produced, recorded, and mixed by Josh Schroeder, it showcased an exponentially more aggressive sound, with more accessible melodic elements stitched into furiously played and often jarring compositions. While Ghost Bath had always drawn attention from the indie rock press, they weren't prepared for the glowing reception the album received; even the metal the press began to soften its unforgiving stance and embrace their music.
The band took the record on the road over the next couple of years, headlining their own gigs across the U.S. and Europe and playing the rock and festival circuit. In 2018, Nuclear Blast supported the touring band by reissuing their back catalog. In August 2021, the single and video for "Convince Me to Bleed" appeared; it was followed in early September by "Hide from the Sun." The full-length Self Loather, engineered by Xander Moser and mixed and mastered by Jack Shirley, appeared at the end of October. ~ James Christopher Monger