- 10 Jan 20
MOODY STUFF FROM HOMEGROWN ART-ROCKERS
It's taken Irish rock trio Hail The Ghost four years to complete the follow-up to their much-touted debut, Forsaken. Thankfully, though, our patience has been rewarded with what is a thought-provoking effort. Last time round, we described them as "atmospheric indie", but Arrhythmia is comprised of bleaker soundscapes, more reminiscent of Joy Division.
Opener 'Prologue' has a short spoken vocal, reflecting on the power of music against a background of pale grey noise. The droning of 'Swarms' teases the ears, a drum nailing the groove to floor beneath Kieran O'Reilly's nonchalant vocals. 'Pirouette' is based around sprightly piano, while 'Black Karma' takes a more strident, full-on approach. The choral element adds drama to 'Sweet Samurai', though again it's O'Reilly's vocals that carry the track. 'Elegy' is calm and reflective, with Corr's sparse piano particularly effective.
The house doctor tells me that with arrhythmia, your heart beats too quickly or too slowly, and the pulse throughout this album tends towards the latter. Its melancholy mood reflects the times weıre living through, which is an impressive achievement. On the debit side, O'Reilly's style can be one-dimensional, and the record isn't exactly awash with subtle textural touches. Still, this is an album you can tunnel into for comfort and compassion. Let's hope Hail The Ghost don't keep us waiting so long for their next report from the dark side.