Fresh from the their self-released debut album I Am Not Dead, I Am 55 Today, Helsinki based post-rockers Ghost on TV curate a special playlist for One Quart Magazine
With their just released debut album I Am Not Dead, I Am 55 Today – it feels like Ghosts on TV have fully arrived. A three track, two song album showcasing their own brand of post-rock, Ghosts on TV are a great example of a band forging their own path, their own way – refreshingly compromise free. Ghosts on TV curate a great playlist for OQM that through their own narrative reveals the inner workings of the band. “These songs and moments have influenced us on an individual level and as a group.” the band tell us.
Sporthorses – Clocks of Dali (Heartcore, 2018)
We do of course like bands suchs as Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Mogwai and Explosions In The Sky. However playing shows together with Sporthorses has been just as inspiring. Melodic and sad post-rock/indie with a powerful vocalist. A hidden gem in Finland’s music scene.
Sun Kil Moon – Bay of Kotor (I Also Want to Die in New Orleans, 2019)
When I was a little boy ‘Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ by Iron Maiden was a life changing moment. “A song can last 13 minutes!?” When I was a little bit older hearing Swans for the first time gave me that same feeling. “A song can last 30 minutes!?” But the artist that has really made me enjoy listening to and playing longer songs has been Mark Kozelek aka Sun Kil Moon. Mark takes his time, and I love it. ‘Bay of Kotor’ is a 23 minute piece about Mark’s experiences in Montenegro. It’s a touching, mundane, funny and beautiful song.
Pharaoh Overlord – Mystery Shopper (#1, 2001)
Our new album might have sounded totally different if we had not witnessed Pharaoh Overlord and Sleep playing at the Circus in the spring of 2019. The day after that we wrote a big part of the song ‘I Am Not Dead’. The idea of repeating the same riff or chord, no band does it better. As much as we enjoyed taking hits of Reko’s vaporizer during the Sleep concert, for me Pharaoh Overlord were the stars of that evening.
Lapsihymy – Always (Over And Over Again, 2017)
Lapsihymy is godlike beauty in the form of music. We played a lot of shows together in 2016-2017. Waiting for our friend to return. Check out DF5K too if you haven’t.
Ossi: (Vocals, guitar)
American Football – Never Meant (American Football, 1999) Best song ever made, best band ever. Period. Also I saw them live in Manchester and Mike Kinsella grabbed me by the balls. Ain’t that something!
Sigur Rós – Festival (Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust, 2008) The Ghosts on TV song ‘Swim’ came to be via this song. When it was time for me to make the lyrics and melodies, I listened to a lot of Sigur Rós. And this song spoke to me! Although there is no real lyrics to this song, I could hear the ethereal cry in Jonsi‘s voice and the beautiful melodies gave a feeling of a soul passing through the midst of time and space. That is the starting point of our song ‘Swim’.
Toujours – Malibu (Tokoi, 2016)
Toujours is a band that no longer exists but it was also a Sibelius-lukio band that we gigged a lot with and actually our gitarist Laura used to play guitar in Toujours as well. The singer of the band Sampo is actually one of my best mates and nowadays they have a band called Sunday League. Anyway… we pushed each other to be better and I think without each other we wouldn’t be where we are today. Toujours is still to this day absolutely one of the best bands I’ve ever heard and their song ‘Malibu’ pierces right through me everytime I hear it. Hauntingly beautiful.
Coldplay – Politik ( A Rush of Blood to the Head, 2002)
Growing up I was a huge Coldplay fan! And to this day I still think that the first records are some of the best ever made. The starting track of the second album, ‘Politik’ is such a beautifully done song that builds up slowly to probably one of the best C-parts ever written. Coldplay is the band of great C-parts and I have noticed the same tendency in my own songwriting. To me, Chris Martin and Coldplay are truly masters of their craft.
Tigran Hamasyan – New Baroque 2 (An Ancient Observer, 2017)
Armenian folk music interpreted by the world’s greatest jazz pianist. I’m glad I got permission to see him live in Sellosali even though I was in military service at the time. I had a break from GoTV for the 9 month period I was in the conscript band in 2017 and our good friend Pinja replaced me. Thanks Pinja!
Gabriel Kahane – Friends of Friends of Bill Gabriel (Book of Travelers, 2018)
This is a virtuoso pianist and my favorite singer-songwriter. His latest album features just him with a piano but is still incredibly versatile. Sadly I missed his gig here in Helsinki this February because of our own gig at Squat Makamik. Fortunately Sporthorses played an amazing gig after us so I couldn’t fret about it.
Zero7 & José González – Left Behind (The Garden, 2006)
The Garden album by Zero7 from 2006 is full of great collaborations with Sia and José, but this short masterpiece is the best one.
Apparat – Dawan (Dawan, 2019)
A song from my favorite album of 2019. I was constantly listening to this when we were recording our latest releases.
The Green Kingdom – Untitled 2 (Expanses, 2014)
My roommate got me into this. Listening to this song on repeat for hours is probably the closest to meditation I’ve dabbled in. It’s weird how I’m unable to get sick of this song at all. I think about that a lot.
Oranssi Pazuzu – Saturaatio (Värähtelijä, 2016)
This album and especially this song has been something I’ve listened to pretty much weekly since it was released in 2016. It has an intensity and approach which combines everything I like in heavier and darker music.
Converge – Jane Doe (Jane Doe, 2001)
Converge – and especially seeing them in Nosturi (R.I.P.) in 2012 with Touché Amoré was a point zero of sorts in my life. It was through those bands that I started to explore and see commonality between other genres of alternative music and the metal and hardcore stuff I was quite exclusively into at the time. To this day, I keep my ticket stub from that show in my wallet. It looks terrible, but it’s there. Napalm Death is another important band definitely worth mentioning in this regard, as through them I first heard of bands like Swans and My Bloody Valentine. Given this heartwarming tale of my adolescent self, the title track from Jane Doe seems the most fitting choice from their catalogue.
Kraftwerk – The Model (The Man Machine, 1978)
Kraftwerk’s Man Machine is a record I keep coming back to in life and that I admire greatly as it refuses to age, it exists in a world of its own. ‘The Model’ is perhaps an obvious choice but it’s undeniable and works anywhere and everywhere. A DJ-set staple. R.I.P. Florian Schneider.
Current 93 – Sleep Has His House (Sleep Has His House, 2000) This 25-minute track consists of a hypnotizing two-chord progression on harmonium and David Tibet’s dreamlike vocals. This is my go-to album when I feel like drifting away from this world for a while. Tibet wrote this record after his father passed away, and you can feel the sorrow in the serene, yet mournful soundscape of the album.
Angels of Light – My True Body (How I Loved You, 2001) Swans have had a huge influence on today’s GoTV-sound, but personally my favourite work by Michael Gira might well be this Angels of Light album. It’s acoustic Appalachian-style folk music, but still really heavy, crushing and dark.
Lungfish – Friend to Friend in Endtime (Talking Songs for Walking, 1992) Daniel Higgs might be one of the most interesting contemporary musical characters to me, having moved from Lungfish’s post-hardcore sound to the really weird, esoteric folk stuff he’s doing nowadays. Talking Songs for Walking is my personal favourite Dischord release, blending kraut-like raw guitar sound to powerful vocals delivered by Higgs. An ultimate summer album.
Abul Mogard: House on the River (Circular Forms, 2015) A mysterious figure from Belgrad, Serbia, Abul Mogard is said to be a retired metal factory worker, who started to make ambient music in his old days to replicate the sounds of factories that were missing from his days during retirement. Whether that’s true or not doesn’t really matter; Mogard’s music, based on different textures slowly morphing into one another – for me represents one of the finest examples of today’s ambient scene.
Fela Kuti – Zombie (Zombie, 1976)
I find it a beautiful take on a protest song. Instead of giving the oppressor the satisfaction of desperate submission, all the rage and anger is turned into joyful empowerment. The energy on this track is insane, the trance-like ecstasy of the band doesn’t let go for a second. When Fela starts singing he takes control of all that energy and focuses it to a single point. It’s like they are taunting the oppressors, and showing that no-one has power over their words, their energy or their emotions.
Philip Glass – The Grid (Koyaanisqatsi, 1982)
I saw Koyaanisqatsi with a live orchestra, with Glass on keyboards, when I was around 14. It was a shattering experience. Both the movie and the music have influenced me greatly. The whole thing is transcendental for me. Composition-wise I love the way simple motives are slowly layered, expanded and re-organized, making the piece extremely static and dynamic at the same time. Turn up your sub-bass for this one!
Tomberlin – Any Other Way (At Weddings, 2018)
Her voice makes me cry comforting and purifying tears, every time. It speaks to me in a way I can’t really put my finger on. Listening to her songs I come out healed, somehow. Not necessarily happy, but reassured.
Eric Whitacre – A Boy and a Girl (Composed 2002)
Choir singing really opened up my ears for textures and harmonies. The human voice, especially within the context of a choir, is the most beautiful sound to me, and something I try to mimic with my own music and playing. The way the close voicings resonate on Whitacre’s ‘_A Boy and A Girl_’, how expressive the intertwining phrases are… It communicates the poem without the need for words, really.
Radiohead – There There (Hail To The Thief, 2003)
The first song we ever played live. Espan Lava, 2014.