Music Reviews

Album Review: The Lathums – Ghosts EP

Gemma Cockrell

Wigan four-piece The Lathums have returned with their latest EP ‘Ghosts’, written during quarantine and produced by James Skelly. With a handful of EPs already under their belt, they have defined themselves as one of the most exciting upcoming indie bands.

If you have listened to the band before, then the EP may not be exactly what you’d expect from them, and it might take you by surprise a bit. Indie guitar bands run the risk of becoming stuck in a rut, as many end up recreating the same song or album again and again, but not The Lathums. They are not afraid to experiment and take risks, in fact, they thrive off doing so. Being unafraid to take risks and experiment is what makes them special.

Expectations are pointless, because The Lathums have no limits

The band uses hints of influence from other artists, ensuring that whilst taking inspiration, the tracks are still very much their own ideas and concepts. ‘Ghosts’ includes ska influences, and elements of Madness, but the songs couldn’t have been made by anyone but The Lathums – the sound is very much their own. The influence of Madness seems fitting seeing as The Lathums were the first band to play at The Blackpool Tower since Madness in the 90’s.

However, these experimentations do not mean that the band have strayed too far from their indie roots. I See Your Ghost was the lead single, and it is still very much an indie track: Johnny Cunliffe’s grooving baseline, Ryan Durran’s classic indie-rock percussion, and Scott Concepcion’s explosive and unique guitar solo are all factors that ensure that indie fans will still love it. It is very much still an indie tune.

One of the most stand out aspects of the lead single are the impressively fast paced vocals by lead singer Alex Moore. During their TV debut performance on BBC 2’s Jools Holland Show as well as their live-streamed show from The Blackpool Tower, watched by over 2000 people, Moore proved that these vocals are no difficulty for him to perform live, as they sounded just as impressive as they do on the studio version.

Some of the songs on the EP are older than the band itself – All my Life being one of these, released in July 2020, but written long before this. Therefore, despite I See Your Ghost being the lead single of ‘Ghosts’, the lead single wasn’t the first taste that fans received of the EP. All my Life was the first song Moore ever wrote, back when he was a young teenager. It is a slow-burning, heartfelt ballad, and it is a moment where Moore’s vocals really shine. The melancholy, slow tempo, and stripped-back nature of the song accentuates his talents as a vocalist, allowing all of the listener’s focus to be directed towards him.

Other songs on the EP were written or finished during their time in the studio this year. Corporation Street is one of these – it was written during quarantine by Moore, but it took a while for the band to perfect the track. A bouncy, jaunty, catchy, and energetic tune, it is joyous and uplifting to listen to. Foolish Parley, the closing track of the EP, features reverbed guitars, a warm 60’s beat, and rapid vocals. Just like Corporation Street, it is an insanely catchy and infectious tune.

The melancholy, slow tempo, and stripped-back nature of the song accentuates his talents as a vocalist

The band used this EP to give people a different taste than what fans would expect, in order to show that there’s a lot more to the four-piece than meets the eye. Expectations are pointless, because The Lathums have no limits. The EP, despite only being four songs long, has a bit of everything – it dips into different genres, but not so much that the EP can be put into a box.

This EP marks The Lathums as one of the most refreshing and exciting upcoming bands right now. Despite being relatively early in their career – they haven’t released their debut album yet, but it is in the works – their fanbase is growing rapidly. 2020 has been a huge year for them, and the band have so much momentum; there is no doubt that their future is a bright one.

Gemma Cockrell

Featured image courtesy of Maurice Von Mosel via Flickr. Image license found here. No changes made to this image.

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