Friday, October 24, 2008

I Am Ghost, Those We Leave Behind

In the Eighties it was Factory Records. The 90s kicked off with SubPop and went on to climax with the so-called 'Creation' scene. They all made history. This decade, instead, we'll be remembered for the evils perpetrated by its MySpace acts, often-inflated bands that made it big via the Internet. Californian 5-piece I Am Ghost are exactly that.

Before I even begin I must come clean and confess this is not my cup of tea. Though I can see why some younger listeners and eyeliner-hungry teenagers may fall under the spell of I Am Ghost, it's patently obvious that if anyone older than sixteen find this lot attractive, then their alarm bells should be ringing like a mother.

Right from the start, the intro We Dance With Monsters sounds like the kind of trite vampiresque Halloween genre that over a decade ago won Cradle of Filth (and then A.F.I.) legions of fans. Don't Wake Up, kicks off with a shaking guitar, fairly fierce rhythm section and frantic lead vocals. It's appalling. It soon becomes apparent that the subject matter of each song is the world of the undead and all that stuff. Scaaary. Like their photos.

Come track four, Buried Way Too Shallow, I just gave up. Emo/post-hardcore and horror-tinged pop metal are amongst those 'genres' I may not be able to stomach. But this one in particular is the Guantanamo Bay of teenage 'rock'. Every song sticks to the same formula, and usually the same set of chords and the same melody, along with a sense of contrived emotionality which turns into a complete joke the moment those occult references begin. I mean, look at those song titles. It’s like a cliché competition. Buried Way Too Shallow; Smile of a Jesus Freak, Bone Garden; Rock'n'Roll High School Murder and below.

Parents, confiscate those CDs before it's too late.

[Those We Leave Behind is out now on Epitaph. I'm sure they'll be plenty of copies available]

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