White Night Ghosts makes music that makes me feel like I'm in the future. I'm not sure why but I kept on feeling like I was in a neo-futuristic psychedelic Tokyo with neon lights when I listened to their four-song EP entitled Joy. If you have ever seen the movie “Enter The Void” you should know what I’m talking about. Their music feels like its growing like a city expanding or a star exploding. They were able to achieve this by combining two of my favorite genres. shoegaze and electronic music. The drums are huge and not drowned in the background like a lot of shoegaze. Instead they are upfront in the mix, driving the layers of noise and synths. Suffice it to say they have more in common with M83 than My Bloody Valentine. One staple they do borrow from the shoegaze genre is the buried vocals. They tended to lay low within the mix and were covered with a decent amount of reverb. In addition to that they are rather sparse and the vocal is not the key player in the songs. Instead the melding of lead synths, pads, guitars and who knows what else that combines to create huge sounding atmospheres is what will draw you in. Take for example the best song on Joy entitled “Decadence.” The combination of the huge, progressive electronic drums and swirling, intergalactic synths and guitars feels like they contain so much energy that the speakers that they are playing on can barely contain the sounds. (I highly advise listening to this music on big speakers and at high levels). While “Decadence” was my top pick the others didn't fair too badly either.
The first song entitled “Bombs Will Be The Seeds For A New World” is a bit more grounded. Some impressive drum programming and airy synths abound as well as the catchiest vocal work on the album. It is a well-balanced song that should not ostracize those who aren't familiar with this type of music. “Hope” is the most atmospheric and gorgeous of the tunes on this EP. The song has no vocals and is a grower; not in the sense that you have to listen to it a number of times to enjoy it but in the sense that it adds layer after layer of sound. It starts with white noise, which eventually becomes background noise in favor of more tangible melodies and sounds. The album closes with “Follow the Ghost.” It is a good song but not my favorite on the album.
You have some impressive material on this album and when they get it right like at the end of “Decadence” it is exceptional. With a little bit of refinement here and there White Night Ghosts are well on their way to becoming a well-known act.
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