Review Summary: "Rock bottom" in all of its various forms compiled into a real emotionally challenging classic
Lately I’ve been noticing this trend with musical quality and general anonymity, which is pretty cliché to say. Literally everyone including your own grandmother has been saying stuff about this mythical golden album-that-no-one’s-ever-heard-of. It’s quite irritating to say the least, especially when the people saying this haven’t even heard the album themselves, merely assuming that when no one’s heard of it, it has to be “the ***”. Examples of this include “Babel” by Mumford and Sons but I’m not about to waste my time on that garbage. Hungry Ghosts’ 1999 album, “Alone, Alone” found its place on my iPod rather recently, but I’ve been listening to it non-stop as it’s currently got me hooked. This album is criminally underappreciated, dare I say virtually invisible to most “obscure” music lovers in my town, except for the friend that introduced me to it. The things I could say about this LP add up to a very obnoxious number so I’ll try and keep it short; Hungry Ghosts have created a classic.
A common recurring theme of Hungry Ghosts’ sound is “melancholy” and though even back in the 90’s it was getting old at some points, the form of the music certainly makes the at times redundant melancholic emotion sound fresh and invigorating. The Australian musicians of Hungry Ghosts play a very dark brand of minimalist indie that clearly demonstrates the true feeling of “melancholy” more effectively than that of Radiohead at some points during its run time. Notable tracks are “Trying To Lift A Rock With A Bottle On Your Head” and “I Don’t Think About You Anymore But, I Don’t Think About You Any Less”, both of which use strings and an accordion very well for their general purpose. I also should note to any person who may not be a fan of minimalist tendencies in music, this album will definitely appeal to you regardless. Though not much is used, there doesn’t really need to be much in order to appeal to the senses and Hungry Ghosts prove that here.
Furthermore on the melancholy premise, certain tracks on this album just sound like downright “rock-bottom” (in a very good way). One noteworthy song is “Alone, Alone”, which takes the cake for my personal favorite within the record’s amazing track list. Some things in life really hit home with you and this song is one of them. Try to picture someone emptying a jug labeled “Your Emotions” down the drain, dispatching the contents away with the other bile of everyday life just to be washed away in the currents of the ocean. The first time I heard this I felt as if I had tears ripped from my tear ducts as they were streaming down my face uncontrollably and relentlessly. I know most aren’t going to act as I did listening to this song but they will certainly feel something being taken away from them.
In conclusion, Hungry Ghosts have created an utterly classic LP with expert instrumentation built in to make you “feel”, and “feel” you shall. I recommend this to anybody with emotional output or a soul (EVERYONE) for those who do have such qualities, “Alone, Alone” will find a center in you. Even the hardest nut could be cracked by this master showing of romanticism and manic depression. Being broken never sounded so good. Pick this one up now; you’ll regret it if you don’t.