Sea Ghost are a four-piece indie rock band from Georgia who make what they describe as “ghost pop jams with guitars”. This album, SG, was released in autumn of last year (and made our Fav Free Music of 2015 list), but has recently been given the cassette treatment by our friends at Z Tapes so we thought we would take the opportunity to write something a little more in-depth.
The band’s brand of bright and energetic indie pop is slightly weird and slightly wistful, coming across as an amalgamation of some of indie rock’s big hitters. You could cite The Unicorns and fellow Georgia acts like Deerhunter and Of Montreal as base influences, plus acts such as Arms and Radiator Hospital poke through too. ‘Cowboy Hat’ is our first taste of this, with lots of hammered percussion and slightly nostalgic, carefree vocals. Indeed frontman Carter Sutherland’s vocals are a focus point across the record, possessing a trembled blend of hope and fear that shoots life into everything he sings. ‘Blood’ begins with some spiky guitars before it goes barrelling into another hectic indie rock track, ending in pounded percussion and Sutherland’s yelps and cries, before the slower opening of ‘Cave Song’, a track which grows in intensity, its instrumental lulls adorned with plonking xylophone.
‘Goldfish’ has lean and wiry guitar lines and these big stuttering, manic interludes, and ‘BBQ’ marries shoegaze and hip hop, its glitchy beats and mesmeric vocals bringing to mind Majical Cloudz. ‘Dog 69’ comes to life with luminous synths and strummed guitars, a sample-filled interlude around the 2/3 mark, before ‘Spokes’ and its raucous energy and refrain of “I would never guess again”. ‘Lalala’ has warm strummed guitar and lacksidasical percussion and deceptively dark lyrics, “i want your pretty symptoms ive seen in cold museums /
i want that mausoleum, Christian love in my throat.” And then closer, ‘Lakes’, reigns things in, slow and sedate, mainly acoustic guitar and DIY percussion.
“if there’s no ocean
we’ll go swimming in a lake
if there’s no islands
we’ll be fine with pretty fakes”
The band also recently put together a video for the track ‘Dog 69’, directed by Mike Ellwood. Check it out below:
Then all that’s left to do is head over to the Z Tapes Bandcamp page to get SG on cassette or as a digital download.