In the years following their 2015 debut, ‘Yesterday Becomes Tomorrow Today’, This Year’s Ghost have been through quite a lot. First of all, the addition of Aaron Curse (ex-The Defiled) has seen them move in a heavier direction on ‘Taxidermy Eyes’. While on a personal level, vocalist Paul McKenzie tragically lost a close friend that serves as the lyrical spine here.
Opening track, ‘Old Familiar’ throws you right into the action, with a dirty riff complimenting McKenzie’s soaring voice in the chorus. Whereas ‘These Hills Can Talk’ is a head banging, feet stomping anthem that would go down a treat live. The filthy guitar and grooving bass prove how talented the band are, while McKenzie’s voice, which was very clearly made for this genre, shines exceptionally on this track. He has a smooth tone that holds a certain amount of power which resembles that of Myles Kennedy.
‘Self Made Throne’ sees the quartet pull things back, yet McKenzie’s angst remains intact, especially during the powerful chorus. During the EP, McKenzie’s vocals become increasingly raw, adding an edge to the final two tracks. ‘The Great Divide of Head and Heart’ is one of the biggest tracks on offer, with a euphoric chorus matched against grunge verses. While ‘This Fog Can Sing’ has the band going out as they came in, with a hefty clash of soaring choruses and thick instrumentation.
Overall ‘Taxidermy Eyes’ is a powerful, melodic release featuring nasty riffs and stadium worthy songs. This Year’s Ghost have managed to find the perfect balance between classic rock and aggressive pop-rock and have used it in their favour to create a truly impressive second EP.
‘Taxidermy Eyes’ EP by This Year’s Ghost is out now.
Words by Becky Mahon.