Moments of Genius Amongst Average Ballads
With even their moniker inspired by a Wilco tune, it'd be easy to judge Cherry Ghost as alt-country copycats, but though their tunes may have the same roaming guitarwork and aching vocals as their forebears, they also have an indubitable passion.
With rich tunes enthused with a vital energy like, 'Mountain Bird' a lithe electrified anthem with sharp guitar riffs seering the swinging piano melody and howling vocals; this is far from the doleful norms expected from anyone interested in country music.
Those who have found the band through single, 'People Help The People', an expansive glittering indie anthem, there's more of the same, but this is the less interesting half of the album, there's far more to Cherry Ghost than this delicate little ballad. 'Roses' and 'Dead Man's Suit' extend this with a stirring, slowbuilding melodies that couple earnest vocals with gentle ripples of piano.
Then there's the broad country charm of, 'False Alarm' and '4am'; more the typical stuff you'd be expecting from Wilco followers but with plenty of charm and style. As you'd expect from the titles 'Alfred The Great' and, 'Here Come The Romans' are a bit retro; the former an upbeat tune with a dance-worthy fire in its belly and plenty of nifty guitar riffs that recall the finest of 80's rock with the catchy refrain of, "Long live Alfred The Great'.
'Mary's On The Mend' is an odd little gem, well hardly little, it's 8 minutes long, but its intimacy with simple vocals over a subtle backdrop of chords and steady percussion makes it feel like a precious secret that needs protecting.
Cherry Ghost are definitely going to be a band that conquer the radio waves with plenty of mellow, simpering tunes, thankfully they also have a few genuine rock anthems up their sleeves to convince the non-believers. 'Thirst For Romance' is a mixed bag but it's far from a bad album with its highlights having enough gusto to make up for average shoegazing moments.