Ghostland Observatory

Record review

Texas Platters

Ghostland Observatory

Paparazzi Lightning (Trashy Moped)

Like Franz Ferdinand, Austin's Ghostland Observatory decided that the best way to deal with the mountain of (mostly deserved) hype accompanying their 2005 debut, delete.delete.i.eat.meat, was another album hot on its heels. The result, Paparazzi Lightning, is more assured if less audacious, separating the duo's dance and rock colors into more distinct tones united by Thomas Ross Turner's relentless, robust beats. If Daft Punk dominates over the New York Dolls this time around, guitarist/vocalist Aaron Behrens leaves no doubt where his loyalties lie on shriekers such as "Ghetto Magnet" and "All You Rock & Rollers." Turner, meanwhile, plays his keyboard bank like a veteran character actor, leading to the taunting "Piano Man," spookhouse disco of "Vibrate," and sly pizzicato strings of the title track. After a frenetic first half, Paparazzi pauses for breath on the R&B-ish "Stranger Lover," and almost loses its way among the spaghetti-Western whistling and Soviet stringscapes of "I'll Be Suzy." It recovers for finale "Midnight Voyage," which, despite its chilled-out ambience, bears an uncanny vocal resemblance to En Vogue's "Free Your Mind." This makes perfect sense, actually: Wherever Ghostland Observatory goes, the asses always follow.

***

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Texas Platters
VVV
Entanglement (Record Review)

Kahron Spearman, Dec. 13, 2019

Levitation Album Reviews
Dallas Acid
The Spiral Arm (Record Review)

Kevin Curtin, Nov. 8, 2019

More by Christopher Gray
Margaret Moser Tribute: The Rolling Stones
The Rolling Stones
That Margaret Moser, she’s a rainbow

June 30, 2017

Margaret Moser Tribute: Patricia Vonne
Patricia Vonne
Shine a light

June 30, 2017

KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

Ghostland Observatory

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle