Saturday, January 24, 2009

Ghosty's "Answers"

Kansas’s Ghosty are an easy band to write about, because they have roots in so many different, great bands of the last 15 years. They are like a super-group founded by members from four or five seminal indie acts. There is some Elliot Smith in the vocals, some early Black Crowes in the guitar, some Pavement (circa “Wowee Zowee”) in the bass, some National in the drums and keys. What brings these bands together is the mellow drift of their melodies, and the soft warmth of their tone. Ghosty uses this combination of elements to write calming songs that run over you like water.

“Answers” is undoubtedly a very successful album because their quiet confidence shows they achieved exactly what they intended to with this production. Is there a down side? Only that soft waves of sound can lull you into a state where the more complex lyrical or even melodic moves, which the album sometimes makes, are lost as you slip into lethargy.

What you loose from this kind of problem is not something you will notice though. To drift your way though beautiful music, sometimes unconscious of its depth, is only really a loss to the band. “Answers” is like the flowers that seduced the Lotus Eaters – a sweet album from which it is hard to pull yourself away.

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