Release Date: Aug 20, 2013
Record label: Houndstooth
Genre(s): Electronic, Pop/Rock
Snow Ghosts' debut album, A Small Murmuration, opens with a distorted drone, singer Augustus Ghost (a.k.a. Hannah Cartwright) ominously setting the tone with a haunting tale of figurative, or maybe literal, battle: “It's not so wise/If you try to run/It's not so wise/You know I've won.” At just over two minutes, the song successfully builds tension with little in the way of resolution, with Cartwright repeating, “The hunter becomes the hunted,” ad nauseam atop a throbbing kick drum, leaving you wanting more and wondering where it's all going, a feeling that recurs throughout much of the rest of the album. True to their name, Snow Ghosts' music is chilly and otherworldly.
Darkness is everywhere. Both literal and metaphorical, it creeps unbidden into the world and envelops its subjects completely. The 'black wave' of which Elizabeth Wurtzel spoke was a source of both terror and comfort, something that Snow Ghosts seem to utterly understand on A Small Murmuration. Ross Tones and Hannah Cartwright have found an ideal home in Fabric imprint Houndstooth.
Throwing Snow (aka Ross Tones) and Augustus Ghost (aka Hannah Cartwright) are not afraid of the dark. In fact, they revel in it. All of this makes their debut album as Snow Ghosts, A Small Murmuration, a little ill-timed given that the UK is currently melting in the sun. The pair met in 2008 and discovered that they shared a mutual interest in the bleaker sides of folk and metal.