In advance of an upcoming as-of-yet untitled second album, Mangog has digitally released this two-song EP. The unique doom template that the Baltimore group established on their 2017 debut remains intact as both songs are driven by impactful vocal melodies and darkly melodic riff sets. But what makes The Ghost in the Room EP interesting is how each song offers a drastically different take on the band’s overall style.
Those doom elements are used to their fullest extent on the title track. The oppressive riff set perfectly suits the ominous atmosphere and downtrodden tempo and the drums work to fill out the open spaces without getting busy. I also love how the vocals move from lead singer Myke Wells to guitarist/vocalist Bert Hall at the halfway point, providing a climactic setup for the shuffled rhythm change that follows before they trade off at the final verse. It showcases the band’s strongest aspects and is easily my pick of the two.
Things take a much quirkier turn on “Hubris.” The bass and drums get to shine here as the former provides the basis of the song’s disorienting theme while the drums put forth a stiff yet tense triplet pattern that goes into faster blasting during the choruses. The vocals continue their harmonizing though the lines are more abrasive. It’s a little tricky to get a feel for compared to the title track, but its experimental nature makes for an interesting listen.
I don’t know if either track on The Ghost in the Room will end up on Mangog’s second album, but it’ll likely bridge that gap quite nicely. Both songs wouldn’t be too out of place on the band’s debut, yet they also stretch their core elements to even further extents. Anybody unfamiliar with the group can look at this as a bite-sized sampler. From there, check out Mangog Awakens and get yourself excited for what is set to come.
“The Ghost in the Room”