The Pale Barn Ghosts – like the train and not the smoke

Written by on February 7, 2013 in February 7, 2013, Music and DVD Reviews, Music Reviews - Comments Off on The Pale Barn Ghosts – like the train and not the smoke

The Pale Barn Ghosts

In 2009, Gettysburg’s The Pale Barn Ghosts recorded the Hello November EP, but before the EP could be released drummer David Taylor left the band and the EP’s release fell to the wayside (bassist Sean Grove has since left the band as well). While they were sorting out their next move Thomas Roue (vocals, acoustic guitar and songwriter) and electric guitarist Klaus Funk went into the studio and recorded some demos of new songs that ended up turning out so well that they decided to combine them with the EP resulting in be like the train and not the smoke.

Even though it is actually 2 separate recordings this whole disc flows well together showcasing the very talented songwriting of Roue as well as solid musicianship throughout. Lyrically Roue really shines here covering issues like the ups and downs of relationships and life and death (with death especially being a recurring theme) handling them in a well-written, very visual way, that really allows them to stand out in your
mind.

The songs themselves are well-crafted alt-country, roots rock with hooks that have a way of quietly burying themselves into your head and then sticking around even when you aren’t listening to them. While there’s not a bad cut on the disc some of the highlights include the dark and haunting “3×8 (And Five Foot Deep)” with it’s unique look at death from the eyes of a gravedigger and “Ten Ton Anchor”, a masterpiece all around from the lyrics to the stellar musicianship with it’s driving snare drum beat and haunting guitar and bass, the infectious bounce of “Logic and Reason” that’s worth the price of admission for it’s instrumental interludes, the catchy upbeat “My Unlikely Dreams” and “Worry Song” that will have you bopping your head with lyrics that will put a smile on your face, the reflective opener “Two Chord Songs” and “Morning Coffee”, both of which remind me of one of my favorite singer/songwriters Darden Smith and the captivating beautiful “Old When I Was Young
” and the untitled closing track. The band is currently work!

Working on new tunes for their next disc and having seen them live with their new drummer and bassist I am definitely looking forward to their next effort.  (The Pale Barn Ghosts) – Geoff Melton

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