Iron & Wine’s latest album ‘Ghost On Ghost’ offers a rather gentle selection of songs, featuring a somewhat interesting use instrumentals and some interesting themes. There’s a lot on this album that is fairly typical of Iron & Wine records, which the music being generally more downbeat than most things, and instrumentals being sparse at times (though for ‘Ghost On Ghost’, not all the time). Interestingly though, ‘Ghost On Ghost’, whilst retaining a lot of what makes up Iron & Wine’s sound, it is still somewhat different to previous albums, with it sounding just that little bit more cheerful at times. It’s interesting, and shows that Iron & Wine is certainly thinking about the sound they are producing and releasing.
As an album, ‘Ghost On Ghost’ is just generally a fairly enjoyablehe album. The album just seems to shift from song to song, with every song linking well with the next, purely through their tone and general sound. For the most part, everything is just generally nice on the album, with there being a very pleasant tone to the album, which in some ways, slightly departs from what people might be used to from Iron & Wine. It certainly works for Iron & Wine, and has helped to give the overall album some interesting character. It’s somewhat refreshing to hear this from Iron & Wine as well, as whilst previous albums have been enjoyable, it just seems that now there’s more that can be enjoyed by Iron & Wine.
Whilst for the most part, ‘Ghost On Ghost’ is an enjoyable album, it is still fails to live up to some expectations. The album itself gets off to what I’d describe as an incredibly rocky start, with the album only truly beginning around half-way in. It’s a shame as it lets down the overall quality of the album, which would have been a very good record if it didn’t have such a poor start. It seems that the first few songs still demonstrate some good elements of Iron & Wine, but I find overall that they just don’t live up to the album, and just sound generally weaker than some material by Iron & Wine. ‘Ghost On Ghost’ does demonstrate some brilliant song-writing by Iron & Wine, and shows some interesting capabilities of the band, but it seems that some of these efforts just haven’t worked at all. Whilst some of the efforts have certainly worked, they’re ultimately not enough to lift the album up in the ranks.
Overall, ‘Ghost On Ghost’ starts off as a disappointing album, but ultimately redeems itself as the album goes along. It’s a shame that the shaky start should affect the overall rating of the album, but it is just not up to the standard that some of the other songs on the album set. Whilst some of them are for the most part enjoyable, it’s just not enough for it to count as really good. I should say that I am intrigued by the direction that Iron & Wine is taking, thematically, on their albums, and it would certainly be interesting to see what new material will come from Iron & Wine in the future, and how it will sound in terms of its tone and lyrics.
- ★★★☆☆ 3/5
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