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Checkpoint Charlie is a dramatic, dreamy experiment in lush, dark, romantic harmonies and grating, headsplitting noise. Composed and produced by Ghost Against Ghost frontman Christopher Bono, the epic work features the Czech FILMharmonic string orchestra alongside Bono's ethereal and strange vocals, and moments of thunderous drumming by Thomas Pridgen (Mars Volta, Trash Talk, Suicidal Tendencies).
Checkpoint Charlie is a piece from Ghost Against Ghost’s upcoming Dark-Romantic conceptual album, Oia. A two-hour saga , Oia is a meditation on love and separation from love. The album outlines a vast, emotional arc that examines the nature and definition of love, moving from the heart-wrenching experience of separation—a result of love fixated on one human or object—to the realization of a superior form of love discovered through empirical insight and liberation from fixation.
Checkpoint Charlie marks the darkest and most melancholic point on the album but is soon resolved on the full length release. Part 1 is a lush, beautiful and psychedelic piece, unique in its use of the orchestra against synths, vocals and ambience. Drawing on the influence of late romantic and neo-romantic composers alongside psychedelic, progressive and post-rock influences, the movement is a fascinating fusion of orchestral writing and post-rock tendencies.
Part 2 “The Descent” portrays the psychological descent into hell that is experienced when one is cut off from a fixated object of love. The consistent, dissonant, droning waves of “The Descent” are designed to cut into the listener psychologically and voice the sense of persistent darkness that abounds in the experience of despair once the terror of heartbreak sets in.
released February 7, 2016
Christopher Bono- producer, composer, vocals, synths, keyboards, programming, mixing, noise, arrangement
Thomas Pridgen- Drums
Mixed by Christopher Bono and Satoshi Noguchi
Mastered by Gavin Lurssen
Recorded at Our Silent Canvas’ Apollo 37 Studios