21: Ghostpoet: Shedding Skin

As good as Obaro Ejimiwe’s debut album was, his modus operandi of sparse electronica coupled with moody vocals somewhere between rap and spoken word never sounded at all disparate to the dozens of hundreds of millions of British artists who have tried similar tricks since the mid 90s.

What’s that Obaro?

You drank too much last night?

You’re going to do a moody and dark piece about that post-club comedown?

Sure, nobody’s done that before.

Come again Obaro?

Sigh, yes I suppose the big city is a dark and intimidating place sometimes.

Are you sure I can’t get you a bag of crisps or something?

Pretty much the only selling point Ghostpoet had to mark him out was that he wasn’t from Bristol. His second album, however, is a marvellous and largely inspired step into the direction of singularity. While it hardly tears up the book and starts again- it still sounds unmistakably like Obaro’s work- it’s an ambitious step into alt-rock territory that sees Ghostpoet put a band together that gives each of the songs here a weightier kick that was absent on his debut. Upon hearing ‘Shedding Skin’ the influences it brings to mind are no longer Tricky and Massive Attack but TV On the Radio or even Radiohead if Thom Yorke finally gave in to the inevitable and started rapping (which would obviously be the greatest thing ever). It’s astonishing how such moody alt-rock coupled with spoken word generally of the glummest variety can produce music so frequently exhilarating.


‘Fun’ Fact: the brilliant (and titled beyond parody) ‘That Ring Down the Drain Kind of Feeling features Nadine Shah. Nadine hails from Whitburn, also the birth place of both of West Ham’s full backs in the 1923 FA Cup final!

These facts are getting increasingly tenuous: Oh I’m sorry, do you have a problem with this completely free and absolutely insignificant list? Just listen to ‘Be Right Back, Moving House‘ and pretend he’s actually singing ‘I am sitting over here, looking for Beyonce’ like I do.

Album Link

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