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Ghost Buffalo

Ghost Buffalo

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Album Review

To a certain extent, the Handsome Family, Violent Femmes, and Nick Cave have all wandered in the direction that Denver-based quintet Ghost Buffalo takes on their debut album, but these guys go all the way with it: Ghost Buffalo is, fundamentally, a blending of goth rock and alt-country. There's a definite twang both in the guitars and in Marie Litton's vocals, but the overall mood of this album is brooding and dark, with prominent bass and echoey reverb predominating. Overall, the combination works, although that's primarily due to the appeal of Litton's delicate, yearning vocals and the three-guitar attack of Litton, Matt Bellinger, and Josh Coyle, which veers between Crazy Horse-style walls of feedback and gentler sounds. The songs themselves tend to blur into one another across the course of the album, with a preponderance of samey ballads; on their own merits, it's hard to fault songs as spookily engrossing as "Hell Here" and "Bones," but too many of them sound simply too much alike.

Biography

Formed: 2003 in Denver, CO

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

One would reasonably expect a band called Ghost Buffalo from the hippie-friendly confines of northern Colorado to be yet another set of trustafarian jam band freaks providing sub-Phish background music for all one's hacky sacking and noodle-dancing needs. In fact, the Denver quintet is an odd mixture of alt-country twang and doomy post-punk, as if Gillian Welch and David Rawlings had reorganized themselves as a Siouxsie and the Banshees tribute act. Siren-voiced blonde guitarist Marie Litton is the...
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