(G)lum Rock

I'm good about exploring new avenues in books or movies or television, but have an unfortunate tendency to listen to the same music over and over. Spotify has been a great help in shattering this rut, mostly thanks to the "follow" list. Seeing that so-and-so just listened to such-and-such provides a handy springboard to discover a group or genre I'm unfamiliar with. Often, a single song is intriguing enough to pull me into listening to a full album. This is exactly what happened when I heard "Dark Star" by Poli├ža. It hypnotized me to such an extent that I went and immediately listened to the entire album, titled Give You the Ghost.

I would never have found this album on my own. My musical knowledge is limited, but I've managed to listen to some alternative rock and electronica over the course of my life. This is a blend of the two, described as "synthpop" on a couple of the sites where I saw this band listed. So the singer's voice is heavily altered, layered and echoing throughout every song. This works well for some tracks, and distracts in others. As far as the tone goes, it's mostly the same throughout - this album makes me feel a bit melancholy. That's not a criticism; once in a while, there's nothing better than allowing yourself some good ol' fashioned pensive music depression.

It does, however, make listening to the entire album at a stretch kind of a challenge. Putting a mellow, downbeat track into a playlist or a mix is welcome. Eleven songs with the same tone and feel in a row can make it seem like just a wall of echoing sound. If you wanted to kick back on the couch, get high, and just let some music wash over you, this album would be outstanding. If you're looking for something to listen to as you wend your way through the grocery store, though, it probably shouldn't be your first choice.

If you had to pick a standout track, go for "Dark Star". Other good ones include "Lay Your Cards Out", "Violent Games", and "Wandering Star". I don't think I'll ever listen to the entire album in one sitting ever again, but it's an interesting collection that was definitely worth my time. And on those rainy days I'd like to sit around and wallow for a bit, some of these tracks will really hit the spot.

Give You the Ghost: B-


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