Posted on June 15th, 2012 (1:15 pm) by Andres Moral

My Great Ghost pierces the ether with the My Great Ghost EP, a steady collection of beats and a calmly oscillating synth organs which build the group’s first album-long crescendo with every bit of careful engineering and creative love. The New York City duo consisting of producer/composer Trevor Gurekis and singer Drew Smith (who should not be confused with either the country star, or the Canadian solo artist of the same name) exercise the meticulous structure of their first album’s five tracks with an irresistible, and at times, mature sense of being.

It is no surprise this duo nails so much of its debut album right off the bat, considering the experience of articulate and expert direction by the Yale-trained Gurekis. Gurekis currently works as a copyist/editor for Phillip Glass as well as at Found Objects Music Production, a company he launched in collaboration with two fellow Yale graduates (Bryan Senti and Jay Wadley) that produces elegant, classical orchestral compositions that score high-end advertisements for the likes of Meryl Lynch and Bank of America. He brings those exquisitely trained sequencing skills to the My Great Ghost table, sending an indie formation about as old as the beginning of 2012 straight into the neon stratosphere.

The My Great Ghost EP opens with the track “Photograph,” patting along with a simple beat and pulsating organ before immediately unfolding a sparkling controlled chaos. Drew Smith’s emotionally light and bright vocal track ornaments the songs’ beginning and denatures into a swinging, melted electronic wave complimenting the rapid-fire chorus. The track’s snugly packed three minutes fades into the airy stillness of “Plain Sight,” which wafts synthesized shadows over a tight drum track. Again, Smith’s voice works in perfect harmony with the music underlining his performance, offering lonesome and pensive lyrics speaking of isolation and redemption. The raspy, rotating beat provides the framework to the fragmented tones flurrying over the lines “hiding out in plain sight, no reaction to the rain.”

The My Great Ghost treatment to Deerhunter’s “Helicopter,” caught the ears of many a music follower a number of months back when initial buzz began to circulate about the band. Their sweetly emotive cover finds its spot at the third track on the album, reverberating faded symbols and saccharine synth buzzes while maintaining much of the poppy, carefree spirit of the original with an added layer of electro-distortion. It plays through into the mysterious, harmonic-minor dance beat, “Means to an End,” which uses its winding, deliberate rhythm to sketch out the resentment and confusion expressed in the composition’s lyrics. The line “death by fire—smoldering—still pales to the guilt you hold,” repeats itself continually at either ends of the rising and dipping choruses.

My Great Ghost switches emotional outfits for their album closer: “Shade Above,” an ultra-catchy pop melody incessantly launching chain after chain of gorgeous hooks. It’s the strongest track on the album, and quite possibly one the strongest songs we’ve heard all year. The sympathetic, eagerly approachable vocals climb up the solid latter of the simple drumbeat that kicks the track off. Smith gives his most engaging performance on this track, as he professes the loneliness of “an arachnid,” that “spins a web from the silk that is in her gut.” “Shade Above,” builds upon itself with colorful, full-bodied splendor demanding the attention of the repeat button.

The My Great Ghost EP rises out of the obscure electronic web-space with a seventeen minute, razor-sharp pop collective whetted by Gurekis’ classically trained genius and catalyzed by Smith’s irresistible voice. Each track offers something a little different; effortlessly switching through modes of minimalism, body-moving dance beats, and profoundly uplifting pop notes. It’s highly recommended to any fan of cool electronic style and captivating pop ornaments. This album is well worth your time; go listen.

Track List:
1. Photograph
2. Plain Sight
3. Helicopter
4. Means to an End
5. Shade Above

My Great Ghost: My Great Ghost EP
Purchase at: Amazon | eMusic

Our Rating

77 / 100
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