Stereoma is unhinged, yet unafraid on Ghost Stories from the Recently Deceased - WXPN | Vinyl At Heart

Lancaster singer-songwriter Nick Curran and bassist / multi-instrumentalist Josh Wood have been releasing music under the name Stereoma since 2014, and today released their third full-length, Ghost Stories From The Recently Deceased.

A possible sideways reference to Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice (and a sweet title in any case), the album collects 11 urgent tracks of blown-out, nervy roots rock from Central Pennsylvania.

Curran and Wood tackle a variety of styles, from “Voice In The Dark” and its Hüsker Dü-ish blend buzzsaw guitars and a big melodic poppy chorus; it has undeniable Twin Peaks roadhouse vibes.

The dusty, dusky “We Can’t Wait” is full of big drama about coping with mistakes and missteps on our journey through life, and trying not to get disillusioned on the way; its big guitars sound like something out of a Drive-By Truckers jam. On “The Rising Sun,” CSNY harmonies mix with a hearty twangy guitar.

The album standout is easily “You Can Run,” with its big feelings of self acceptance, flaws and all: “You can run / you can ghost / but you just end up where you were / you gotta run to yourself.” It’s simple wisdom in the spirit of Tom Petty.

At times, Ghost Stories sounds desperate and distressed. Curran’s voice is high in the mix, and sometimes shaky and uncertain, while the instruments around him are rattling, unhinged, almost completely falling apart at points. But Stereoma always keeps it together enough to keep going to the next song, and that energy should be our collective aspiration right now. Listen below.

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