The Ghost Inside – Get What You Give
Los Angeles hardcore outfit The Ghost Inside have come a long way from their roots under the title of A Dying Dream when they formed back in 2006.The evolution from being fans of hardcore to becoming one of the biggest bands in today’s hardcore music scene has been a huge achievement for vocalist Jonathan Vigil and co.
In a pivotal moment in the Californian quintet’s career, having their first release through Epitaph Records since moving on from Mediaskare, their new album Get What You Give has certainly given fans something to talk about.
Follow up to 2010’s release Returners, third studio album Get What You Give covers some new ground for the band. Featuring experimentation with clean vocals for the first time, producer Jeremy McKinnon; best known as vocalist for Florida post hardcore outfit, A Day To Remember, urged them to give it a shot. And boy did it pay off. Opening track to the album, This Is What I Know About Sacrifice is like a punch to the face, but in a good way. With the roar of Vigil’s opening line ‘This is what I know about sacrifice, meet me at the crossroads! – lets go!’ along with intricate and tight riffs of guitarist Aaron Brooks, the record is set up for success.
Following track Outlive is where it starts to get serious. In addition to the transition onto Epitaph Records, former For The Fallen Dreams drummer Andrew Tkaczyk and newest instalment to the line up, features heavy double bass drumming that coincides seamlessly to Brooks and bassist Jim Kiley’s melodies. The track was also leaked to fans prior to the album’s release throughout their time on 2012’s Warped Tour. Described as a song about when Vigil is away touring, Outlive depicts the struggles of trying to fit back into the ‘normal’ working routine. Where others may judge on not owning their own house or having a wife and kids with a stable everyday job, it does not matter, because in the end life’s memories will outlive everything else.
The first single, and the second track released prior to the album’s formal launch date, Engine 45 showcases the true lyrical talent behind Jonathan Vigil. With catchy hooks throughout the track and the sincere chorus line – ‘If it’s a war you came to see, you will never see a waved white flag in front me. I can’t end up dead, I won’t be misled. I’ll keep singing this song inside my head.’ – works as a metaphor on the impact of how powerful addiction can be, and can be perceived as an anthem to anyone who has ever struggled with addiction in the past, to never surrender, and never give in.
While keeping the balance between catchy melodies in the chorus and tight, intricate riffs in the guitars, Get What You Give provides hardcore with a strong mind and conscious sound. This is prominent in crushing track Deceiver. The combination of catchy and heavy riffs with Vigil’s forceful yet even toned vocals are reminiscent of Bury Your Dead’s Mat Bruso and Hatebreed’s Jamey Jasta on 2006’s Supremacy.
While clean vocals and Jeremy McKinnon’s encouragement to the use of melody and hooks are featured on the record, there are still traces of TGI’s previous heavy influences. The musical arrangement on tracks White Light and Face Value which features guest vocals from Comeback Kid’s Andrew Neufeld are both fast and energetic, with cues for the perfect breakdowns that are sure to erupt in chaos when played at their live shows that prove to be just as memorable as each track on the record.
[youtube id="wzS5-AjJ71E" width="620" height="360"]
Standout Tracks: Outlive, Engine 45, Dark Horse, Deceiver
Summary: To someone unfamiliar with the hardcore music scene, some would say this is another generic hardcore album. However Get What You Give provides the listener with an all rounded hardcore release that showcases the bands ability to write intricate music with motivational lyrics, while keeping it all damn heavy.