Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 8.5/10
If you look back on your life so far is there a period which defines you more, shakes your belief in your ability to the point where spectres howl in unison, where they find ways to ridicule even the greatest of accomplishments, because of that every day may seem like a struggle to find the joy that is wrapped up in between the hours, Too Many Ghosts may sap the mood but in Mike Grogan’s world they are a boon and a bewitching addition to the music collection.
Like Mr. Grogan’s previous album, the enormously satisfying Make Me Strong, the well observed and piercing lyrics form an orderly, if not slightly anarchic, queue in which each word understands exactly what is its function in delivering the song to the informed masses and music lovers; the tales weaved, the heartbreak felt and the shadows that fall neatly into place are all part and parcel of a bigger picture, one that Mike Grogan is willing to paint with precision and deft lingering strokes.
Too Many Ghosts may be the reason why so many of us start something with good intentions, especially when it comes to being creative and yet it takes a stout mind to see past those ghosts and wade through the forest of those departed to see in the end they are only sheets with holes in, that there is nothing to be scared of that cannot be overcome by faith in your conviction to be heard.
In tracks such as Show Them What Love Can Do, Big Ships, Underground and Heaven is Here, Mike Grogan, ably assisted by the likes of Miranda Sykes, John Brunswick and Phil Beer, produces a set of songs that fly straight and true, they have assurance and credibility written through them as if made in a Blackpool sweet shop and sold to all in search of posterity and the feeling of warm memories.
Too Many Ghosts, perhaps, but it is these ghosts that carry the tales in which we must immerse ourselves in, a bounty offered and one to be accepted.
Mike Grogan’s Too Many Ghosts is released on February 10th.
Ian D. Hall