21 Apr 2019
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Ghost Who Walks - EP Review: Ghost Who Walks

21 Aug 2018 // A review by Paul Goddard
This debut EP from Wellington’s Ghost Who Walks comes hot on the electro-plasmic coat tails of the latest single released, Walking Talking Blues.

Vertigo is the opener here and is a blues 'n' funk-tinged blast with more than a hint of soul that will get you dancing. The hook is instant and whilst not completely innovative the track hits all the right spots. Sam's vocals compliment the song without overpowering it, and the chorus digs in hard enough to have you singing along subconsciously and then just when you think everything is getting a little too familiar and comfortable a flange driven meltdown knock you off balance before the song heads back into a sky-high climax that dances all over Hendrix and the Chili's while Lenny Kravitz nods away approvingly in the background. The overall effect is kind of dizzying, a bit like Vertigo.

The next track Dreaming About Listening did have me worried as it starts off very similar to opener Vertigo, but it then drops into more of an offbeat reggae/blues vibe that showcases a smoother edge to Sam’s vocal. Very classy, it will get people dancing. Already I am picturing these songs being played live, where they will really shine. The lead break in the middle will rock some people’s boat and luckily didn’t get too self-indulgent or go on too long. It seems these guys know that less often equals more.

Walking Talking Blues is a bit of a cliched title for a song, but this track is more soul-based and whilst it also runs along to the same beat as the previous songs the chorus adds a point of interest with its unexpected entrance. Then we are back to familiar territory as another (very well crafted) lead break makes things start to feel a little formulaic but the track lifts again when the passion in Sam’s vocal starts to show through. On further listens this song grew on me but initially is probably the least engaging track on the EP. 

Then we have Soul Power. Why do bands almost always put their most interesting track at the end of the EP? This is a smoky, funky blast that really showcases the potential of Ghost Who Walks. It feels like they are letting go a bit on this song. It is so difficult to get in a studio and capture music that so clearly belongs in the live environment without losing something along the way, but Soul Power comes the closest with no obvious chorus and points where the songs flow is interrupted with unexpected breaks and pauses it shows a creativity that could take Ghost Who Walks in a direction that could lead them to a very bright future. 

★★★ (3 stars)


Review written by Paul Goddard

 

About Ghost Who Walks

“I make music to move the body and touch the soul” – Sam Fowles.

Ghost Who Walks is a project started by Sam Fowles, backed by his band that is homegrown in Wellington. Formed from the vibrant jam scene of Wellington open mic nights. Combining elements of Blues, Funk, Rock and Reggae, sprinkled with psychedelic overtones. Ghost Who Walks has rocked many a venue in the Wellington live scene with funky originals that Sam writes from the perspective of someone who has seen struggles, overcome and risen above them. This is a lyrical style the listener can relate to. “With relatable lyrics of creating your own destiny, a listener can resonate more with that kind of lyrical sensibility. This is music that makes you feel.” - Muzic.net.nz

Straight after their inception they cut their teeth into the Battle of the Bands progressing to the national final before spending the next year honing their sound ready to record with the Dr Lee Prebble at Surgery Studios Wellington. Producing an EP that showcases their raw energy and gives you a glimpse into the power of their live show. “Ultimately an energetic offering, 'Vertigo' soars this Wellington group to new heights and offers an exciting glimpse into the impending Ghost Who Walks EP in 2018 - fun grooves ahead!" - Tiana Speter, thesoundcheck.org.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Ghost Who Walks

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