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School of Seven Bells – Ghostory

March 6, 2012
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This is electronic pop done right, radio-friendly enough to be almost universally appealing.

With the lead single, “The Night”, firmly in my mind, I dive into School of Seven Bells’ newest release, Ghostory. The album blends pop and electronic elements seamlessly, with guitarist Benjamin Curtis’ history in experimental rock clearly heard. Alejandra Deheza’s vocals do extremely well floating over the lush compositions. The vocals are literally drowning in reverb, giving this album a very retro feel, if retro is the 80s. As opposed to the more visceral and animalistic offering by The Naked and Famous on last year’s Passive Me, Aggressive You, School of Seven Bells‘ Ghostory provides a calmer, more easily listened to electronic pop.

Though the album only has nine tracks, it is still a quality listen that just passes forty-five minutes. The tracks range in sonic quality, with one of the most startling distinctions coming between the kick-stomp tenacity of “Low Times” to the slower, more ethereal “Reappear”. For the most part this album is a pretty cool journey through the sonic landscape provided by electronic pop. There is a danger of all of this beautiful music becoming simple background static, with every song having little to make it distinct from the other songs.

When looked at as a work in its entirety, Ghostory is a fantastic record. This is electronic pop done right, radio-friendly enough to be almost universally appealing. The tracks are compelling a catchy at their best, especially seen in the opening track and lead single, “The Night”. Technically there is little wrong with this album, it’s only fault perhaps being that it may not be able to have a wide reach. But other than this minor detraction, one finds a gem in this album and one that is a worthy listen in 2012.

“The Night” by School of Seven Bells

Ghostory was released on 2/28/2012 on Vagrant Records. Buy it here.

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