Mixed and Mastered by Robert Fugate at Mind Ignition Studios
Ghostmonster’s first album, Hair Raising Adventure, was a breezy journey boasting transcendent imagery with knock down harmonies, dramatic peaks leading to somber valleys with catchy hooks. With direction and structure in every jam, they evoke a more-structured Phish, or more radio-friendly Moe. Their dynamic and diverse themes range from the ordinary to the extraordinary, concentrating on connections and correlations, perspective and position.“Things Could be Better” is a mellow, melodic, Beatles-esque tune with strong vocals and a catchy recurring riff. Part dreamy and surreal, with lyrics laid simply over increasingly energetic instrumental thrust, this song evolves and gains edginess and speed as it continues, finally falling into a brief, subdued jam. “In or Out,” is similarly soft, with a surreal start, blending in achingly expressed vocal inflections, evokes Iron and Wine or The Shins. It’s the type of sensual, emotion-laden tune you could envision playing over a break-up scene in an indie flick. “Days Expecting More” is a sunny, head-bobbing, mildly-folksy song with introspective overtones and unexpected instrumental elements. “Keeper” has a deliciously decadent riff with an easy going, natural flow that lulls, softly and sweetly. “Fool in the Fire” spins clever lyrics and an infectious melody into a whimsical and engaging tune complete with energetic choruses, before dissolving into a brilliant guitar-heavy jam. “Lonely Boy” offers the sweetened poetry-in-motion lyric, “Share in this life together that we’re all going through/ This boat ain’t sinkin’ babe and its built for two.”
This indie-infused rock/pop power foursome started life in much the same way a packet of cherry Kool-aid sits in your cabinet waiting for water and sugar. The just-add-band scenario started when Dayton producer Rob Fugate of Mind Ignition caught a solo performance of Mike Goetz singer/songwriter at Kentucky’s Madison Theater in late 2004. Rob invited Mike up to the Dayton studios to lay down some simple acoustic tracks and a collaboration was born: they spent the day recording some acoustic tracks and getting to know one another. Along with the session, Mike offered some studio tracks from a previous band project (2002), long thought destined to be shelved. “It was material Rory [Sandhage] and I had begun tracking with bassist Nate Horney at Audio Oasis with producer Jeff Higgins”, Goetz recalls, “At the time Rory was living in LA, Nate in Boston. They were in town for a couple of weeks and I wanted them on this project. There was a sense of track what we can now and flesh it out later.” But momentum for the project abruptly shifted as money ran out and Mike found himself without a car after a major traffic accident. “It was put on the back burner while I got my life back together; Rob was the impetus for its resurrection”. That next year, Rob and Mike assembled the project into a cohesive structure, tracking vocals and guitar and cleaning up the mix. Soon an album began to take shape which was dubbed Hair-Raising Adventure, a title taken from the first track of the album. It all came full circle when Ron Gerlach joined the permanent line up on bass and Steve Grimes took over behind the drums, adding a powerful rhythm section to the Ghostmonster sound, and versatile keyboardist/guitarist/vocalist Al Leffler came aboard to add a new dynamic to the band. Response to the band’s live performances has been overwhelmingly positive. Selling out of the 1st pressing of their debut album “Hair-Raising Adventure” , they are currently gearing up to record their 2nd album.