In the last year, I’ve seen these boys an absurd number of times, in more than a dozen venues spread across three states; I’ve hung out with them in the studio, and while they played chess and put cats on producers’ heads and watched Sin City and drank rye and cream soda. I’ve gone to Tennessee for them twice. I’ve drunk Jack Daniels with their girlfriends and chatted with their sisters and their mamas, I’ve danced in the front row when they played to twenty five people and when they played to hundreds. I’ve documented a million bad facial hair and thrift store suit choices, two million times when Matt almost took Stephen’s head off with his guitar, three million times when Patrick sweated so much he left puddles on the stage, and one memorable occasion when Hank danced right out of his shoes. Like American Aquarium, Holy Ghost have been some of my biggest, most vocal fans, just as we’re some of theirs.
And all of that, I did 98% of it with a camera in my hand. Last night was only the second or third time I’ve seen them without shooting them. And it was worth it, to stand in the front row and just dance until my legs were numb, to sing along and watch a spectacular set. They sound so fantastic these days, polished and grown up from a year on the road, and we were treated to a set full of rarely-played tracks from their first album, and it was just nice. I miss Six already, but sometimes it’s nice to just be a fan.
I was going to create a tag called “reviews of albums by people with whom i have drunk rye whiskey on tuesday afternoons”, but then that only turned out to apply to one band. Also, I can’t bring myself to objectively officially review an EP that says “Mixed and mastered by [someone to whom I am related] in his bedroom, Charlotte, NC” on the back cover. It’s really good, though. It’s not quite their high speed, banjo shredding live sound, but it’s looser and more relaxed than their previous studio album.