Ghost Gum’s The Past, The Future, Dwelling There Like Space is a beautifully-rendered debut, taking the promising fuzzy punk of their 2014 demos and delivering an album that stays true to that sound while expanding into more ambitious moody atmospherics. The Philadelphia band’s songs let air and light in while still being abundantly dense. Many of their most transcendent moments take their cues from dream-pop and shoegaze, but on songs like singles “Edible Complex” and “More” and the indelible opener “2nd Song,” their knack for constructing a hook shines through. Those two tendencies coalesce perfectly on “Home,” my favorite song on the record (at least for right now) — it’s an anthem about the warm feeling that comes from settling into someplace familiar, and it builds up to a twinkling climax that makes you feel like anything is possible as long as you find that sort of stability. The rest of the album fights back against that feeling, whether they’re questioning the meaning of everything on “More” or picking apart the phrase “our future holds no worth” on the tightly-knotted “Repeater,” but for me it all comes back to the tranquility they capture at the end of “Home.” That’s something that’ll stick with me for a long while. Ghost Gum have made an impeccably constructed first full-length, and you should listen to it below.
The Past, The Future, Dwelling There Like Space will be self-released on tape later this year.