In Random Pulls, the Modern Vinyl staff digs blindly through their collections to reveal the ins and outs of their musical history and tastes. Want to go digging through your own collection? Submit a writeup of 100-200 words and a photo of the record’s most interesting visual aspect to email@example.com and it may be part of a weekly wrap-up.
2xLP, 180-gram (2013)
Play It Again Sam — PIASR6100LP
When I’m planning a late night drive through the bruising and noir-ish spots of Los Angeles, I’ll put on Ghostpoet’s full length album, Some Say I So I Say Light. Of course, I can’t exactly play the record as I drive through the night, unless there’s some magnificent yet perplexing new feature in cars that do so (and even then I’d be unabashedly skeptical). But the dulcet tones of London’s Ghostpoet, aka Obaro Ejimiwe, give way to the intriguing urban jungle of something like my hometown in downtown, filled with overhead lights casting dark silhouettes on the ground amidst tall, brooding structures — which themselves are filled with god-knows what kind of people — and the many alleyways, crevices, and smaller places that locals call their very own. “They only come out at night,” some might say, though Some Say I So I Say Light brings that claim into the fold.
The album emits this cinematic, nocturnal atmosphere in the vein of trip hop, with a vampiric taste for downtempo electronic beats and a hunger for rap, but it honestly doesn’t fit into any of those categories — nor does it pine to. The album is on its own level of “chill,” weaving in and out at a pace as good as Ghostpoet’s flow, which forges a path through blurred lines willfully with his airy delivery, using “Hmm,” “true true” and other exclamations in his verses to keep it conversational but always personal. We’ve heard woozy environments in music before, but Ghostpoet seems to navigate it well above those in the game, and keeps it calm and collected in the process.
Play It Again Sam gives us a 2xLP set of the album, with a pressing that sounds absolutely purposeful through headphones or without. The bass in the beats penetrate with a perfect roundness, matching Ghostpoet’s vocal ease, enveloping you in the atmosphere it calls for.
The music itself may elicit a dreamy late night drive, in which case you certainly can’t take the record with you, but Some Say I So I Say Light still plays well in the comfort of your vinyl den, where all you really want to do is lay back and sink into the record’s high fumes.