Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Ghost of a Thousand-

New Hopes, New Demonstrations

    Hey internet, I’m back at school, which means both quality free time and less motivation to update this blog. That said, I’ll still try to post a review here as much as I can. I’m not throwing in the towel quite yet, I’m just plugging it under the door so the cops can’t smell the good food I’m cooking. On today’s menu: a British hardcore band who go by the handle of The Ghost of a Thousand. A thousand whats, you might ask? Even they probably don’t know, but they’re sure angry about it. Their debut This is Where the Fight Begins was about as heavy as they come, and even trying to keep up with singer Tom Lacey would cause most to scream blood. These Britains brought back the pain, the noise, and the dissonance from that first release, and covered it in boiling oil until it confessed to having some rock and metalcore influences, and then let themselves on fire in protest.

    Besides unleashing a few new riffs from their veritable bag of tricks, New Hopes, New Demonstrations has a much higher production value, and it gives the band room to stretch out. And stretch out they do, sometimes even not shouting! As incredible as the prospect of identifiable lyrics is, they seem to always place the worst lyrics in the quiet passages, meaning the ten comprehendible words are also the dumbest. As well, the grit that This is Where the Fight Begins brought to the party was also integral to its success- Lacey’s voice was like drinking spoiled milk, and every bass drum hit was a kick to the stomach. Did someone say milkshakes?

    Some of the influences they bring out on this sophomore effort meld effortlessly, and others turn sour right away. The twang of “Moved as Mountains, Dreamt of by the Sea” makes the anvil vocals practically tear the skin from your eyes, but the misplaced indie intro of “Nobody likes a Hero” wears as comfortably as a steel wool sweater. Overall, it’s hard to consider New Hopes, New Demonstrations a more fulfilling album. Obviously, no band should continue to rewrite their first album over and over, but the sound they have now isn’t quite at the level of completeness as it was two years prior. They are a band in transition, and hopefully they’ll come out even stronger on the other side of it.

New Hopes, New Demonstrations

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