I’ve always been more about the feeling of the song than the words. People have told me in the past that they can’t listen without absorbing all the words. I’m the opposite.
With that in mind, Ghost Soul Trio’s Too Many Futures feels like it was written for me. It combines influences of some of my all time favorite bands: Mutemath, Radiohead, Polyenso… the list goes on. Having just seen frontman James Harker perform with his other project Spirit of the Bear at Steadfast Fest, it is painfully obvious that he is a musician to watch in general. At this point, I’m nearly 100% confident that one of his projects will take off—it’s just a question of which one gets noticed first.
As you might expect, this album lives in an angsty, whimsical world where time signatures and melodies run amok. Yet, everything maintains a counterintuitive sense of order, that is yet unsurprising. You may have heard the adage “expect the unexpected.” It’s hard to call what’s heard here typical, but nothing is altogether unexpected. I’m thinking about this a lot while listening to the ethereal “Good Fortune,” a track that sounds like a psychedelic journey through the rain—it reminds me of when I listened to Youth Lagoon’s Wondrous Bughouse for the first time, but it’s a bit more accessible than that. That mildly unsettling feeling continues on “Afraid to Begin”—the word trepidation comes to mind. The emotive element of the album, rather predictably, peaks on “Heartbreak,” though this isn’t a liability. I think of Mutemath and how though I love them for their insane grooves, but quieter songs like “Stall Out” remain some of my favorites of theirs.
Of course, the band lets loose in multiple settings on this album, staying in that vaguely unsettling vibe (“Pantherland”), while other songs are just straight up cool (“Circles”). I had a friend message me after I posted about this album in a Mutemath fan group, giving heavy praise for the latter.
Ghost Soul Trio take a different direction with their sound than their name might lead one to believe, but it’s a happy surprise. I’m biased in covering a record with this sound, but gosh, they do know how to pander! I kid, I kid.