Live Music + Gig Reviews

Ghosts @ Water Rats, London

9 January 2007

January. A time for resolutions you have no chance of keeping, dwelling on the year just past and genuinely feeling miserable because you’re skint, have a rubbish job and hate where you live. Well for some of us anyway

Oh, and lists. Loads and loads of annoying lists, telling you in specific detail exactly what you should and shouldn’t enjoy over the next twelve months. And, like all other well informed types around about this time of year, it’s obligatory for music journalists to crawl out from their festive haze and make predictions about what is likely to tickle your eardrums and make you part with your hard earned cash. (We don’t do lists, see here – Ed)

Ghosts have the fortune (or misfortune, depending on where you read it), to be featuring on several of such lists – a band to watch in 2007. A band that could make it big. The problem with this is twofold: firstly, there are loads of awful, awful bands that they are sharing column inches with, suggesting that you would be better off drunkenly navigating Myspace than taking their advice.

Secondly, it means that the bar is well and truly raised, you will pack tiny venues like the Water Rats with expectant punters who are some of the most easily disappointed around.

Tonight, Ghosts have it all to prove then, but it’s easy to see why their upbeat, indie pop-by numbers has attracted the attention of music barometers abound. U2-style delayed guitar notes beckon the start of their set, and from then on in, a blend of catchy pop hooks, timely key changes and melodic riffs show how they just might propel themselves chart-ward sometime soon. Stay The Night, is in the same upbeat, radio friendly bracket as The Feeling or even Elton John.

Still interested? Well, Something Hilarious is anything but, a brooding ballad which circles around in atmospheric noise, whilst Musical Chairs takes minor chords into a big chorus which is so breezy it threatens to float off.

Whether you warm to Ghosts will depend on how much edge you like in your musical taste. Ground breaking and genre defining this is not. But, if you have a penchant for jazzy, tuneful pop with a Britpop twist and the substance to back it up, you might find yourself contributing to their rise out of the shadows.

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Ghosts @ Water Rats, London