School Of Seven Bells
‘Ghostory’ (Full Time Hobby)
Given that the ashes of many of their tried-and-failed peers are still blowing through Williamsburg, that School Of Seven Bells have even made a third album is impressive in itself. ‘Ghostory’ is the meatiest justifi cation yet that they’re an exemplary product of Brooklyn’s eclectic sound factory, suggesting that they could be ready for some tangible success this time around.
It’s not been dull between records, either. There’s been line-up drama (Claudia Deheza departed for personal reasons), a fresh impetus (Benjamin Curtis and remaining twin Alejandra Deheza wrote together for the first time) and a concept (‘Ghostory’ is a tale of a girl and her demons) all of which point to a shift in purpose. ‘The Night’ and ‘Low Times’ introduce driving dance rhythms to brittle vocals and foggy sound, whilst the endless density of Curtis’ guitars and electronics is sleepily immersive (notably on eight-minute closer ‘When You Sing’). And anyone concerned about the gaping hole in pop music left by Madonna’s move into cinema can draw hope from the glacial ‘Reappear’ and the stunning ‘Lafaye’, which unravels as the best song this band have recorded.
Whether or not it facilitates the success they want, ‘Ghostory’ is as potent and decadent as School Of Seven Bells have ever been.