The intersection of Power Punk Alley and Alternative Boulevard is haunted. At first blush First Ghost sounds like you’ve heard them before. Vocalist Ryan Sweet brings the standard slightly flat singing that signals that First Ghost is “Alternative,” yet the first four tracks of Real Eyes – “Rain,” “Shaking,” “Westdel Bourne,” and “Someone Else” allow guitarist Sweet and bassist/drummer Anton DeLost to shred with less distortion than many recent alternative releases. The clarity of the sound, powered by DeLost’s drumming gives Real Eyes a more punk ethos.
“Someone Else,” the EP’s fifth track opens quite a bit slower than the first four, but patience rewards the listener with a rise to the harder punkier sound First Ghost should become known for. The title track closes out the collection opening with a more classic guitar riff reminiscent of “La Bamba,” but once Sweet opens his mouth, First Ghost moves into more established alternative territory. “Real Eyes” is the EP’s most musically adventurous and enjoyable track, simply for the range it demonstrates and the risks the band takes. This is the track I’d distribute as the single.
The only place London, Ontario-based First Ghost seemingly refuses to take risks are in the lyrics department. All six tunes despair of love and broken relationships and people. The lack of lyrical maturity nestled inside the musical excellence of the EP disappoints a bit, but if you listen for the music alone, you’ll not be disappointed. First Ghost’s Real Eyes EP fits comfortably in the alternative camp without getting lost and smothered by sound-alikes. Their just-unique-enough sound keeps them from stale same-ness and is definitely worth your time Amazon/iTunes credits.