As If by Ghosts
/graveface; 2004/

more info:

I've finally moved in my new appartment. It's nice, cosy and soundproof and I can have parties, drink too much everyday and meet nice people. After having felt too much I've thought too much and now I'm just guts and brains. Need to find some kind of consistence, to shape a body out of this and to try to live new things in case something good happens.

Dreamend are a post rock band, but with a singer (aha!). It reminds me of Do Make Say Think, a more low-key Broken Social Scene and of the first Jim Yoshii Pile-Up album (right before they turned all Death Cab for Cutie on us).

Ok, who am I kidding, I HAVE to tell you about the packaging. It's got a cut-out window like Goodbye Enemy Airship the Landlord is Dead, a unique photograph (mine: two guys and a woman drinking) like Jim Yoshii Pile-Up, a negative of a picture (mine: a truck in an industrial zone) and a torn page of a book that seems to be titled Shadow Land (I have page 79). When you receive a copy of an album with that kind of packaging and all these useless (but undeniably cool) goodies, you tend to be nicer in your review. I've tried to stay objective and good-humoured and I've succeeded (yay!).

Of course the global quality of the album, songwriting, interpretation, instrumentation made being unbiased really easy. You might ask yourself, "do we really need another post rock band ?" and I might tell you "no, but we didn't need those GYBE! hippies in the first place either." It's a bit psychedelic at times, with hazy vocals and ghostly guitars, it reminds me of a rawer, less arty Sigur Ros jamming with Do Make Say Think (but without all the horns). The singer (Kyle!) sometimes sound like the Adore-era Billy Corgan on the quiet pieces (actually, he sounds a bit more fragile and a bit more sincere).

Dreamend's music is warm enough to fit another silly Winter it's not always post rock like "quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, KA-BOOM" there are more traditionnal songs, with verses and chorus and no spectacular explosions. Of course there's still your usual Mogwai tremolo here and there, but as it is something Mogwai seem to be tired of I don't really mind. The more I listen to "As if by Ghosts…" the more I realise this is the sophomore album I thought Jim Yoshii Pile-Up would do (they didn't, those silly emo-rockers, they thought it was a better idea to knock on Chris Walla's door and make the best Death Cab for Cutie record in a while, tsk tsk tsk, etc).

This is a charming record, with various moods and atmospheres, a car trip across snowy landscapes, with halts in warm taverns smelling of good alcohol and bad cigarette, cathartic drug experiences in red velvet rooms, passionate love, dramatic break-ups and an OK ending.

At this point, you might ask yourself "could this really be a good present for my moody friend in need of more delicate but furious but still delicate music ?" and I might answer "well, it could be."

-Barbara H

/sept 15th 2004/