I was intrigued before I even heard a note from Night Ghosts by Dark Water. He explains the theme for the album is “my love letter to the nighttime. It's an exploration of the night's dreamy air and how it can deceive and posses. How you can fall in love with ghosts and memory. How the night makes you lust for something so distant and so ethereal.”
His music falls in line with bedroom indie pop. My first thought was Youth Lagoon with darker elements. The album opens with a wonderful song entitled “Magic Candy.” There are hypnotic synths and a vibe that made me think of the stillness of night. It’s subdued but still crackles in some ways. The song is also very catchy and I immediately was able to appreciate the vocals. As the song builds with more elements I was reminded of one of my other favorite groups M83. The song begins to absolutely soar by the three-minute mark. This is a beautiful song.
Up next is “Night Ghosts” which covers you in ambience. It’s dark and feels ethereal. The song is also a bit of a slow burn finding its momentum towards the end of the song. There are more infectious songs ahead such as “Car” where he sings about the cars he hears from his bedroom window. As the song progresses you are greeted with hooks which sound somewhere between M83 and The Chromatics. Up next is “He Plays A Dark Song” which sounds a little more post-punk inspired in line with a band like Joy Division and The Cure.
Even the interlude entitled “Ghosts Interlude I” is no filler. It sounds like a passing dream in the subconscious mind. “Night Love” is absolutely gorgeous. HIs vocals here drip with melancholy. It’s intimate but powerful. A similar sadness is explored on “And So Now…” which has shades of a band like Beach House. “Augustine” is romantic, dark and haunting while “Ghosts Interlude II” felt perfect before the closer “Black Candy.” It’s a fitting ending that is a little brighter than most of the other songs.
Night Ghosts is an absolutely realized album. It’s built on an original idea and every song builds on this foundation. The phrase “the sum is greater than the parts” is pertinent here. Across these ten songs he builds a cohesive, artistic vision. The night is where we hide, where we rest and where we dream until the morning light arrives and we begin again.
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