The Ghost Rockets
The Ghost Rockets, who bill themselves as “Maximum Rhythm and Bluegrass,” touch deftly on just about every sort of sound on their debut CD, Bootlegs. From the country twang of “Under the Table” to the poppy “My Guilty Pleasure,” these guys are a: extremely talented and b: nuts. Talent-wise, between the five members they play over 30 instruments, from pedal steel to banjo — all in the right place, at the right time. Nuts? How about a bluegrass breakdown called “New White House Blues,” about the Kennedy assassination? (“look here you rascal, see what you done/ you shot the president with this mail-order gun”). Not enough? Try “Hard to Get.” What starts off as a frustrated man’s plea to a icy woman gradually evolves into the realization that it’s a love song from a stalker. It ends with a voice over a bullhorn going “now honey, I just want you to put the gun down, and step away from the car.” Ah, a song to my heart.
But seriously, the Ghost Rockets are a damn fine band, and Bootlegs is an assured, varied piece of work. Even if you don’t share my fondness for bluegrass conspiracy theories and tongue in cheek stalker anthems, give ’em a whirl anyway. There’s something here for the entire family. The Ghost Rockets, P.O Box 1023, Hoboken, NJ 07030; http://www.hudsonnet.com/~undertow/ghostrockets