Mock Orange took me completely by surprise. They only just came to my attention despite having been a band for nearly 2 decades. Although, they didn’t begin to gain some exposure until their third album, Nines and Sixes, in 1998. It’s 2011 now, and they still seem to be Indie’s little secret after the Spring release of Disguised As Ghosts.
The album opens with the mid-tempo number, “Grow Your Soul Away.” Although it lacks in being a very captivating opener—it’s a good set-up for the rest of Disguised as Ghosts. “Silent Motion” follows and keeps the same pace. The track almost feels like a “part 2” to its predecessor. Both songs bear the same formula and rhythm. Mock Orange change things up on the third song entitled, ”My Car.” A twangy guitar leads us through the verses of lazy lyrics, while synths and the band jam out what should have been choruses. “Sidewalk” takes a more folk approach—resulting in the most enthralling song thus far. Things get even better with “I Can Sing.” This indie-rock number picks up the tempo and features the most riff laden melodies on the record.
Kicking off the second half of Disguised as Ghosts is “Feel It Now.” Unfortunately, this tracks lends to the sluggish feel of the first half of the album. By this point, the airy effects of Ryan Grisham’s vocals are beginning to make it hard to stay awake. It certainly works with the album, but it’s a hindrance on the listener. Fortunately, the following track, “End of the World,” wakes up the listener. This upbeat number will surely succeed in getting you to move your feet before the soothing timbres of the folk track, “Going Away.” As we get closer to the end of the album, we reach “Roll Your Eyes.” It’s nothing groundbreaking—presenting simple drumbeats and dull melodies. The album closer, “Stop and Go,” is a slow paced track and lends the album its title from a lyric In the verse. So much of the album has felt repetitive that it’s hard to find much reason to sit through this one last song, and you’ll find yourself struggling to finish it.
Mock Orange didn’t make the best first impression with me on Disguised as Ghosts, The songwriting was relatively simple and monotonous, and the lyrics weren’t that great. However, there were enough highlights to keep me interested and willing to check out their previous work.
6.0 / 10
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