It’s been a long but, seemingly, fruitful road for Chuck New (lead vocals/talkbox/synth) and Jimmy Con (production/synth/vocals) – the duo that are Ghosthouse. From modest, hope-filled beginnings as dorm mates at Columbia College Chicago, the two have trudged and schlepped a long time to get to where they are today.
Seven years, to be exact.
And in those seven years of collaboration, seven years of working alongside each other as best friends, seven years of energetic live shows; those seven years of rumination and commitment have finally birthed the self-titled debut album of the Chicago-based electrofunk duo (an added drummer—Dylan Hyde Castle—makes the group a trio when playing live).
The group has done well making a name for itself—the benefit of working so tirelessly for the better part of a decade. Their big break came in August of last year when their track “Rx Music” made it on The Jersey Shore in season four, episode two, exposing Ghosthouse to roughly 9 million viewers. And they have reinforced their debut effort with a Twitter-fed grassroots campaign to get on Last Call with Carson Daly.
The album is purely dance music, so much so that it might as well come sticky with sweat and covered in body glitter. But both New and Con seem to truly love their music and accept their limited market.
New’s preference for soul music and R&B from the late ’60s and early ’70s blend with Con’s proclivity for ’80s synth-pop to create a bubbly, morphed version of nostalgic dance-pop—the soundtrack to an alternate universe where flashes of life are only revealed in the short glimpses a strobe light provides, where pupils remain dilated for hours on-end and where personal space and genitals are being encroached upon to the point of near-claustrophobic climax; all of which, depending on your tastes, could either sound great or like a blurry flashback of your last trip to the optometrist.
Visually the band did a great job of capturing their sound with a promo video on YouTube that syncs their single off of Ghosthouse “Flatline” to Kevin Bacon’s big dance scene in Footloose. So, needless to say, the pair doesn’t take themselves too seriously.
But while songs like “Flatline” and “Private Dancer” are catchy and cause neurons to send “thrust” messages to your pelvis, they’ll have a hard time finding their way out of the dank clubs they pulsate in on a regular basis. But that’s ok. Because sooner or later, John Lithgow will make his way to your town, and to relieve some of the societal pressures from the Reverend Shaw Moore-powers that be, you can summon Ren McCormack’s spirit with some Ghosthouse and exorcise the demons.
Ghosthouse – Ghosthouse tracklist:
- “Private Dancer”
- “Flat Line”
- “Analog Man”
- “Virginia Is 4 Lovers”
- “Makeup Sexxx”
- “Crazy in Love”
- “925” (Sam Padrul Remix)
- “Private Dancer” (Craig Williams Remix)