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The Ghost Who Walks

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iTunes Review

Song titles like “The Ghost Who Walks,” “The Truth Is In the Dirt,” and “The Birds They Circle” point to the dark themes that singer/songwriter Karen Elson explores on her 2010 debut. Elson, who is married to Jack White of the Whites Stripes (he served as producer and drummer here), has created an album with a rootsy vibe that, despite the lyrics, isn’t always gloomy. The music has a retro sound that mixes Americana, ‘60s rock, and pop, with keyboards and sliding guitar tones coloring the effective arrangements. Oom-pah rhythms and a piano that reeks of a dank saloon serve as accompaniment on “100 Years from Now,” where Elson slyly sings and talks about a love that won’t matter one day. Spooky guitar tones, accordion bursts, and drums that build and pull back mark “Garden,” a track that finds the model-turned-singer letting loose. “A Thief At My Door” impresses with its sense of restrained drama; it’s a lovely song, and Elson’s voice is imbued with a subtle emotional power. The album closes with “Mouths to Feed,” a dust-bowl tale graced by distinctive fiddle.

Customer Reviews

Beautiful album

Karen has a great voice and these songs back her up as being a great songwriter. Music-wise, you can totally tell this album is produced by Jack; it has signature Jack moments, but Karen is the focal point here. The album is delicate yet abrasive, and just a really great listen. I hope this isn't a one shot album because I'd love to hear more from her in the future. 'Cruel Summer' is wonderful.

amazing melodies- beautiful voice!!

I'm so excited to hear an album that has REAL melodies and doesn't rely on effects to catch your interest. The songs are simple and honest (the way a good song should be!) and the melodies are beautiful and very catchy. Karen's vocal range is very impressive and her voice has a lot of character and emotion. The album has great variety- cabaret, country, lullaby, rock, but I'd say the overall style is "haunting and beautiful". A very solid debut. The Garden, The Birds They Circle, and Cruel Summer are all taking turns being my favorite- but get the whole album. It's really great.

Just fantastic -

I reccomend buying the entire album. It all feels like a web of beautiful fairytales, and Karen Elson has outdone herself with husband Jack White in creating a genuine and haunting album. I'm praying this is a passion that continues, because I would be more than grateful to hear more of Karen Elson's voice.


Born: January 14, 1979 in Oldham, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Before making a name for herself as a singer/songwriter, Karen Elson was already established as a supermodel who worked with the world's leading fashion photographers and designers. However, music was her first love while growing up in Oldham, England. Raised in a musical family, she listened to Mazzy Star, Nick Cave, and PJ Harvey while learning how to play guitar and writing songs in secret. Though her height, pale skin, and red hair made her a prime target for teasing while she was in school,...
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