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Metascore
81

Universal acclaim - based on 13 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.6

Generally favorable reviews- based on 10 Ratings

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  • Summary: The debut full-length release for London-based electronic producer James Greenwood was co-produced by Erol Alkan
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Jan 12, 2015
    90
    There's such a beautiful combination of elegance and exploration in this debut--Greenwood has created one of the best and most confident debuts in years, and you'd do well to bend your ears around it's intricate and delightfully planned out wonder.
  2. 85
    Ghost Culture is a house fan's Alice in Wonderland experience--everything is curious, and nothing is quite what it appears to be. But everything is delightful.
  3. Q Magazine
    Jan 7, 2015
    80
    Ghost Culture's self-titled debut often feels like eavesdropping on a late-night confessionary: one where influences such as Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode mastermind Martin Gore and Soulwax are fused into a thundering, fluid whole. [Feb 2015, p.109]
  4. Jan 7, 2015
    80
    'The Fog' provides the LP's coda; part of me is surprised by the last-gasp dive into Gruff Rhys-esque psychedelic pop, but the rest of me is too bowled over by its beauty to care. It's the last in a dazzling array of surprises that show exactly why his label were so keen to snap him up in the first place. On this evidence, Ghost Culture is in for a very good year.
  5. Jan 12, 2015
    80
    The pleasure, and it’s considerable, is in the detail.
  6. Mojo
    Feb 18, 2015
    80
    Ghost Culture;s pungent, treacly melodies and fidgety, complex syncopation are a robust blend. [Mar 2015, p.97]
  7. Jan 7, 2015
    60
    Where the album falters is in his overly ambitious and affected vocals, which fall on the waifish end of 80s new wave.

See all 13 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. Jan 22, 2015
    8
    Ghost Culture is off to a flying start with his self-titled debut.

    Ghost Culture blends electronic dance music together with ambient,
    Ghost Culture is off to a flying start with his self-titled debut.

    Ghost Culture blends electronic dance music together with ambient, layered soundscapes and sprawling beats almost effortlessly. The whole album is saturated with infectious synths that are cheerful as they are dreamy; vibrant as they are mellow.

    There is a distinct current of electronic dream-pop across the album, although there are some notable game changers. 'Giudecca' and 'Glass' for example, display bubblegum beat prowess first and foremost, whereas 'How' and 'Glaciers' offer more of a downtrodden lull. Either way, the one thing that is consistent across the songs is muted, almost disinterested vocals.

    By no means does this have to be a negative thing either, since Ghost Culture's dry, calming voice cuts through his expansive soundscapes with far more impact than it otherwise could.

    Ghost Culture evidently has a knack for treading lightly between sleepy and perky, but just as the album threatens to fall into a deep slumber, it asserts its aptitude with the hallucinogenic dance floor grooves of 'Lucky' and 'Answer', the latter especially providing a satisfying climax towards the end of the album's duration.
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  2. Feb 15, 2015
    8
    Ghost Culture is James Greenwood, a 24 year old Londoner who began making music in his bedroom in 2013. After releasing a series of singlesGhost Culture is James Greenwood, a 24 year old Londoner who began making music in his bedroom in 2013. After releasing a series of singles which quickly gained him a following, he was picked up by Erol Alkan's Phantasy label. Alkan, who co-produced and mixed Greenwood's self-titled debut, described the moment he heard the track "How" as "what The Strokes would have sounded like, had they been produced by Delia Derbyshire.” Ghost Culture features a diverse set of electro-pop tracks incorporating elements of synth-pop, house, techno and more. Many influences can be heard throughout, from older ones like Depeche Mode and Kraftwerk, to more recent ones like Caribou and Hot Chip. Despite these, Greenwood's music is his own. It sounds fresh and accessible but also adventurous, containing enough nice surprises that take things into more left-field areas. Greenwood's soft, sleepy vocals work on the albums more upbeat tracks but also on the albums more laid back ballads. Kate Travers excellently described it as "a house fan's Alice in Wonderland experience."Ghost Culture ends as it begins with strong set of tracks that leave you wanting more. A superb debut.

    ~ Stand Out Tracks: Mouth; Giudecca; Arms; Lucky; Answer
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  3. Mar 7, 2015
    8
    A dark, hollow electronic experience that keeps you interested throughout. Simultaneously interest could possibly do the same for the MercuryA dark, hollow electronic experience that keeps you interested throughout. Simultaneously interest could possibly do the same for the Mercury awards judges, I reckon. Expand