There is something slighty different about Ghost Stories than your typical band. The music sounds kind of normal, normal referring to any sort of upstart band consisting of a group of friends ambling through music with two guitarists, a bass, and a drummer, but not really. For one, the formula listed above is tweaked with a number of variables like a penchant for a leading acoustic guitar in place of electric, whereas the electric guitar is rarely used conventionally, often providing a haunting steady rhythm of drawn out chords on the verge of giving a feedback shriek, but never quite releasing, always tensed in suspense in contrast to the light lyrics sung with a soft voice and often backed by sounds of birds and things that might be found in a muppets musical interlude accompanied by an unrelenting jolly tramp of a marching percussive rhythm with a positive slope. The number of people in the band is not a straightfoward four either, but almost three times that. The standard equation now looks a little more complicated, coefficients added with a number of unexpected turns, sometimes making us wonder where the inevitable limit of Quixoticism will be.
The term “quixoticism” refers to Don Quixote, a man who favored impractical fantasy and play rather than what he saw as the drudgery of efficiency in the established norms of behavior. “Quixoticism” would be the noun that personifies the spirit of Don Quixote if the word existed. The correct term is “quixotism,” but this is not neccesarily a bad thing or a mistake on the part of Ghost Stories. They have dubbed their album with a word that has deeply ingrained connotations to the whimsical and playful, but does not actually mean what most people would take it to mean. What it actually means is open to any range of definitions, as the word does not exist, thus having no definition.
The music of Ghost Stories could be the definition of the word, as the music certainly has a playful feel to it, but is not just limited to making one specific sound, caged in an equation to produce lines that predictably reach either ends of infinity. Ghost Stories have kept all options open to them, and it can be seen in Quixoticism with their tempo changes and somewhat poppy sentiments while always knowing how to move to their own beat.
Grandaddy – Sumday
Earlimart – Everyone Down Here
The Lilys – Precollection