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NTGB - There's No Ghosts In This Town (self-released)

30 January 2024

There is something going on here that has a vague link to that old-school, Brit-pop sound. But I can’t for the life of me work out if it is the sound that Brit-pop evolved from or a more post-Brit-pop indie sound, the one was left in its wake once all the posturing, pushing, and shoving had died down. Not that it matters, just an observation.

What does matter is that NTGB (which, forgive me for saying, does sound like a news channel sorry) knows precisely how to put a song together, one that is light and accessible yet driven and full of energy. “There’s No Ghosts In This Town” exists at a point where indie integrity meets pop poise, or somewhere between pop and a hard place. This song has all the hallmarks of a cult favorite, something that the underground movers and shakers can get behind but also with all the commercial prowess demanded of the more discerning pop-pickers.

Clearly, NTGB knows the secret to making compelling indie-pop music: songs that keep things straightforward at the core level and then which they simply dress and drape with various cool and hooky tones and textures, attitude, and swagger to create the desired effect.

Why create clever undercurrents and ornate mechanics and then bury them under unneeded sonics? Why build light, accessible, and infectious musical lines if you aren’t going to let them be heard? You shouldn’t. So they don’t. Instead, with NTGB, what you see – or should that be what you hear – is what you get. And what you get is a simple yet effective, buoyant, and energetic song filled with just enough space that everything has plenty of room to breathe. Indie-pop at its finest. Or pop-rock. Or indie-rock…or whatever, nobody takes any notice of genres anymore anyway.