New Album Review

Creepy Clowns Crawl out of the Dark in “Spell Piercings”

Last year I wrote a short article about Gonemage, Garry Brents’ crypto-death and nu-metal project that he is lovingly devoted to. I absolutely love this person’s work, and thankfully he’s released a new album, “Spell Piercings”. 

“Spell Piercings” was released February 23, 2024, and has a total playtime of thirty-eight minutes and forty-eight seconds. It is the twelfth release by Brents under the Gonemage moniker. He has other projects like Memorrhage and Cara Neir

Onto the album… “Spell Piercings”

To start us off and put us in the optimal headspace for this strange album, we must acknowledge the story and theme set up by Gonemage on their Bandcamp page:

“It’s 1999. Somebody someone from nondescript suburbia opens a dusty, old toy box tucked away in a crawlspace underneath a bedroom closet. Out comes a purple clown doll, animated with clacking footsteps, smiling, and singing indecipherable words. Stone, ice, and chains suddenly emerge out of purple smoke emitting from the doll, warping all surroundings into a dungeon. All nearby inhabitants become subject to the clown’s morbid sense of amusement and games of magic and mischief”

From Gonemage’s Bandcamp

Brents must have a deep appreciation of the inner-machinations of creepy clown dolls. I don’t love clowns, but I’m also not terrified of them either. This, though, is horrific. I applaud Brents’ fun creepy theme as it definitely helped me assimilate parts of myself with the sound. 


The first song on the album is a rollercoaster. It’s a long descending staircase into a musty basement that is just a portal to another equally horrific dimension of terror and surrounding fear. Claustrophobia sets in. The walls are touching you, scraping you and you’re stuck with nowhere to go but further down into this album’s abyss.

Bouncing Scroll

I really loved the first bits of this track up until the chorus. Then it kinda drags me along, unwillingly, into more drawn out mediocre vocals. The instruments are epic though. I do love the variation and complexity Brents continues to use in all of his projects. 


Another track on this album I found to be close to perfect for my ears. The first and the last minute are amazing. Absolute terror and fear crawl through the closed pores on my skin. The goosebumps are spreading like a plague. But that minute in the middle of the track is numbing, and not the good numbing. The “boring, what am I doing here listening to this too many thoughts in my head” numbing. 

Sliced in Chamber

The main issue I keep finding with this release is the variability within the tracks themselves to keep me focused and loving the entirety of the song. I do like this track, but it gets old the more you listen to it. That might be my decreasing fascination with songs that tell stories or have a narrative. The tink tink tink sounds in the last twenty seconds are gold.


As one of my favorite tracks on this release, there are still a few shortcomings. At first I didn’t love the movie sound byte used in this track, but the more I listen to it, the more it grows on me. Foreboding music throughout and an amazing set of lyrics represented as “(indecipherable words and sounds from the clown doll)” (From Bandcamp). This is a long heavy track which keeps me entertained. 

Tattered Cloak

Addicting guitar rhythms and interesting vocals still don’t help me adore this song. I cannot pinpoint the exact reasons “Tattered Cloak” doesn’t do it for me, but it doesn’t completely repulse me either. 

Cave of Trials

The introduction is full of whiny vocals and that just completely ruined my chances of loving this song. It does have fun, campy lyrics sung in a strange manner:

“Soda pop soda pop wonder drug

Soda pop soda pop fresh syrup

Soda pop soda pop wonder drug

Amoeba amoeba soup

Slime jelly”

From Gonemage’s Bandcamp
Spell Piercings

The longest track on this album would have had to a ton to make up for the shortcomings and perceived time wasted in some of the other tracks, and it absolutely does. I adore this song. It’s got the abominable clown doll creeping through my skull at this moment. At seven minutes long, I never expected to be sucked into a track like this, especially on the last song of the album. I find this track to be a step up from everything on “Celestial Innovation” too (which is easily my favorite release under the Gonemage projects).

Leaving the Clown’s Grip

Alright, this album has tons of good and beautiful innovations in it. Brents is a phenomenal collaborator with his fellow Texas musician community to create his work (you can see collaborators for “Spell Piercings” on the Bandcamp page). There are a few things I didn’t love in this album too, but I think this release shows how much fun Brents is having creating music. I can’t wait to see and hear more music that Garry Brents releases in the future, and while this album won’t be getting tons of replay ability for me, it still should be fun to revisit every now and again.