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Ghost in the Water

Tooth

(Hidden Shoals; US: 8 Apr 2008)

The husband and wife tandem of Nathan and Mandy Tensen-Wollery create some interesting, atmospheric melodies on this album, sounding a bit like the Cure if Robert Smith thought the keyboards were the end all and be all of the band. At least that’s the case with “I’m Not Afraid of Falling” which also resembles a sedate performance by the New Pornographers. The band aren’t afraid to take listeners on a ride with the initially maudlin then poppy “Lake Ice” which again recalls a Canadian group, this time Stars. They revisit this template soon after with the gorgeous, harmony-driven “Cardinal Red”.  Mandy takes the reins for the gorgeous, Björk-ish “A Nightmare” that has more quirky, ambient-leaning accents. The greatest asset this album possesses is how highbrow it is without being overly arty. A great example of this is the lush, reflective “Clean Sinks and Folded Laundry”, a roughly three-minute nugget that ebbs and flows. Ghost in the Water go totally retro though for the chipper, synth-pop of “How to Draw a Ghost”. Another keeper has to be the majestic “Pushpins and Tape”.

Rating:

Originally from Cape Breton, MacNeil is currently writing for the Toronto Sun as well as other publications, including All Music Guide, Billboard.com, NME.com, Country Standard Time, Skope Magazine, Chart Magazine, Glide, Ft. Myers Magazine and Celtic Heritage. A graduate of the University of King's College, MacNeil currently resides in Toronto. He has interviewed hundreds of acts ranging from Metallica and AC/DC to Daniel Lanois and Smokey Robinson. MacNeil (modestly referred to as King J to friends), a diehard Philadelphia Flyers fan, has seen the Rolling Stones in a club setting, thereby knowing he will rest in peace at some point down the road. Oh, and he writes for PopMatters.com.


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