Thursday 22 September 2022

GNASH - Shared Nightmare (EP Review)

Date Released: September 23rd 2022. Record Label: Self Released. Formats: DD

Shared Nightmare: Tracklisting

The Darker Half - 3:05

Broken Mirror Image - 2:59

The Amniotic Lake - 3:16

Sacrificial Bastard - 3:39


Josh Richter - Vocals

Nicky Richter - Guitar

Ethan Martin - Bass

Keenan McNeal - Drums


Shared Nightmare is the debut EP from Blackened Sludge Metallers GNASH and is a concept release about “a tale of conjoined twins, where one half of the pair dies. The remaining twin must continue on in life, carrying with him a corpse he can’t be rid of.

Well I was excited to listen to this release, as I’m a twin myself. Not conjoined or anything. Just a run of the old mill standard twin. So I wanted to visit the darker side of Sludge Metal to make me feel slightly uncomfortable and GNASH succeeded on all levels for me. As this is a rather dark and brutal journey into the realm of Blackened Sludge Metal with the band taking influence from bands such as THOU, EYEHATEGOD, USNEA and other bands of that ilk.

Shared Nightmare only lasts for twelve minutes but the atmosphere is bleak, dark and takes a no-holds barred approach with the brutal riffs throughout the entire EP. Pitch black growls and violent grooves are the main order of business with a great sideline in Post-Black Metal edge with the lyrics being violently too real at times. 

The EP could be the soundtrack to a disturbing underground horror movie. Everything is seedy and desolate with the Primitive Man approach that can be heard on The Darker Half and Broken Mirror Image. 

The riffs are down-tuned low with distorted sounds on various stages of the EP. This only adds to the horrific and nightmarish story that propels the creative themes for this EP. GNASH do play a fast-paced style of CRUST PUNK or D-BEAT Metal that sees the band earn that right to be compared to Sludge Metal heavyweights such as THOU and EYEHATEGOD.

I never expected the Psychedelic sounds on Broken Mirror Image that gives a brief glimpse of warmth and humanity to their music. Though, that doesn’t last with GNASH.

The final two songs The Amniotic Lake and Sacrificial Bastard are the standout tracks with GNASH going even further with their dense and bleak creative themes. The music even becomes more riff-centred showing that there could be something different from GNASH on hopefully subsequent releases.

Production values are solid and fair that allows GNASH to build their platform to gain a fantastic following within the Sludge Metal underground scene. These guys could be major players of the Blackened Sludge Metal scene in the years to come. GNASH have a highly original sound and vision of their own that I want to explore even further.


Words by Steve Howe

Thanks to C Squared Music for the promo.