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Posted November 21, 2006 by Mike Mineo in Features
 
 

The type of Ghost Stories everyone enjoys

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Ghost Stories is the musical alias for Ron Lewis, a well-travelled musician based out of Seattle who has played with the likes of Colin Meloy, the Joggers, and the Dismemberment Plan. Lewis’ sound is driven by soft and melodic folk, with a few examples of contemporary experimentation (whether it be key-based synth or distortion) making up memorable and often haunting songs. This would make Ghost Stories such an ideal name for the project, with songs that stay etched in your mind after several listens, despite the diverse and lengthy structures. Lewis tells his tales over a voice that does not stray over a whisper, mixing together lo-fi qualities with jumpy energetic acoustic guitar chords and synths. Lewis’ new album, Quixoticism, will be released on January 23rd on Sonic Boom Recordings. The album has songs that date back seven years, most recorded at Lewis’ home, hence his reputable title of a “bedroom musician”. The band’s live sets consists of a revolving door of musicians, though they still put on a great show, as can be seen by a live video on Lewis’ myspace.

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‘The Upper Ten/The Lower Five’ is one of the highlights on Quixoticism, with a result that blends about four songs into one. The beginning stages is a pleasant acoustic melody based off of Lewis’ cooing, eventually transformed into a more energetic and electric demonstration with a vocal and musical style reminiscent of The Shins. A guitar solo than signals the song back into an even more sullen and downbeat acoustic take comparable to the first section of the song. Eventually, the song ends with a great choir-like harmony over a mixture of uplifting keys. Being the first song I listened to from Lewis, it set great expectations for the following songs about to come. ‘You Wear It Like A Stained Glass Window’ is more direct and less in-depth, though the style appears to be more confident in the use of keys and electronic elements. ‘The Motions’ is a nice acoustic song that relies on Lewis’ delightful melodic vocal skills, with a variation of shuffle percussion and a strum of an electric guitar only making its way in at the end. I’m looking forward to hearing the rest of Quixoticism, as it sounds to be quite promising.

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Ghost Stories – The Upper Ten/The Lower Five

[audio:https://obscuresound.com/mp3/ghost-upp.mp3]

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Ghost Stories – You Wear It Like A Stained Glass Window

[audio:https://obscuresound.com/mp3/ghost-you.mp3]

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Ghost Stories – The Motions

[audio:https://obscuresound.com/mp3/ghost-mot.mp3]

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Official Web Site


Mike Mineo

 
I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine. Send your music to [email protected].