Album Review: The Son(s) – The Creatures We Were Before We Are Ghosts

The Son(s) re-appeared in 2018 sporting a new line up and playing almost exclusively new material in a series of gigs across Edinburgh and Glasgow. Their recorded works have always included a spiritual tilt linked inextricably with the spaces and buildings they’ve been recorded in. 

This has never been more evident than on The Creatures We Were Before We Are Ghosts; recorded in the cavernously spooky yet homely Leith Theatre. A space which sat empty throughout urbanity’s darkest days at the end of last century but has risen and blossomed again since being renovated and run by the local community.

This notion of an artistic idyll within the bustle of a modern city seems to translate directly into the overall sound of the album; this peaks during the singles ‘Lord, I am grateful’ and ‘My Starry Eyed’. The former is a gospel-hued paeon that gives way to crashing drums and noise while the latter is a wistful, mournful address to someone whose hiding place is being guessed at.

Highlights include ‘Deep, Dark River Running’ where the interplay of the snare-free verses and the soaring, soulful choruses mesh in a naturally unfolding slow journey of a song. The title track breaks out of the album’s overall slightly ghostly feel with splashes of harsher noise, all the while, reflecting a continuity of guitar tones drenched in reverb and atmospherics befitting their grand birthplace. 

It would be a disservice to the variety of influences and songwriting nous that has gone into this record to pigeonhole it under the old psych-rock tag. What you’ll get throughout these 12 tracks is introspection and hope, yearning and regret, in a mostly hangover-friendly style topped off by Karl’s vocals which have all the complexity and sweetness of a chocolate porter.

The Creatures We Were Before We Are Ghosts is out now on Olive Grove records

Follow us on Twitter for more interviews, reviews, competitions, and news.

Read the April 2021 issue of SNACK magazine on your tablet, mobile, or pc.

You May Also Like

Single review: Wuh Oh – ‘Softstyle’

If you’re dreaming of being poolside or eagerly awaiting the re-opening of the clubs ...

Music Interview: Hinds, The Prettiest Curse

Sometimes you get the impression that many musicians forget how much fun being in ...

Interview – Self Esteem – Compliments Please

Self Esteem is Rebecca Lucy Taylor, previously one half of indie folk pop duo ...

Review – Bill Ryder-Jones – CCA, Glasgow – 7th October

A rainy Monday night in autumnal Glasgow makes for a miserable occasion at the ...

Love Music Hate Racism – The Beautiful Resistance

Love Music Hate Racism have been organising grassroot campaigns to combat racism and xenophobia ...

Gig Review – Man of Moon – Stereo, Glasgow – 22nd February

It says a lot that having formed in 2012 that Man of Moon can ...

Review: Dardishi Zine – Issue 2

Dardishi Zine is a community arts project founded by and showcasing the cultural talents ...

PAWS Glasgow

Music – PAWS – Track by Track

PAWS – Your Church on My Bonfire – Track by Track PAWS’ career arc ...

The Boy with the Lion Head

The Boy with the Lion Head The Boy With The Lion Head are back ...

Get SNACK magazine in your inbox. Free


Keep up to date with all the gigs, events, and news coming out of lockdown.