In the music game, perseverance is key. Everyone can’t be an over-year success, after all. Allyson Baker is a prime example. After making waves in Toronto’s punk and hardcore scene, she made her way to San Francisco and joined dirty blues rockers Parchman Farm. When that band parted ways, Baker kept trucking with fellow ex-Farmer and ex-Canadian Carson Binks, forming Dirty Ghosts in 2006, whom we first introduced to you at our Axis of Audio party during this year’s South by Southwest. Now, though Binks has bounced for stoner-metal outfit Saviours, she’s finally set to release Dirty Ghosts’ debut, five years in the making.
With Binks gone, Baker took the opportunity to continue working with her hubby, rapper and album co-producer Aesop Rock, and reform what would become Metal Moon. With Aesop handling the drum loops and the aim of “putting the disco in discord”, Dirty Ghosts’ debut has a vastly different sound from Baker’s previous work, not leastwise because she’s the singer now and not just a guitarist. “I play so much less guitar now,” she says. “I’m thinking more about songs, and not volume and attack.” That songwriter’s focus appears to have done her well.
Taking influence from acts like XTC and The Police, Dirty Ghosts is all about catchy, genre-mixing tunes with impeccable beats, providing Baker’s voice a perfect pedestal from which to shine. Just take a listen to the lead single, “Shout It In”. The dub-infused funk number thumps along with instantly likable grooves and earnest vocals. It’s so inescapably appealing, you’ll wish it could keep going long after it drops out at the end.
So, while it looks like Baker’s hard work is finally paying off, we’ll have to wait till Last Gang Records drops Metal Moon on February 21st to savor the full fruit of her labors. That is, of course, unless you’ll be around for Dirty Ghosts’ string of Cali dates next year, which includes a stop at Noise Pop. See the tracklisting, tour schedule, and check out “Shout It In” below.
Dirty Ghosts – “Shout It In”
Metal Moon Tracklist:
01. Ropes That Way
02. Shout It In
03. Surround The Controls
04. Battle Slang
05. No Video
06. Katana Rock
07. 19 in ’71
08. Steamboat to Concord
09. Pretty Face
10. Beast Size
Dirty Ghosts 2012 Tour Dates:
01/19 – San Francisco, CA @ Knockout
01/24 – San Francisco, CA @ Casanova (DJ SET)
02/23 – San Francisco,CA @ Noise Pop Festival
02/24 – Los Angeles, CA @ Bootleg Theater
02/25 - San Diego, CA @ Bar Pink
02/26 – Costa Mesa, CA @ Detroit Bar