This time last week I was in Dallas, TX hanging out at The Curtain Club for a friend’s birthday. And about a week prior to that I did an interview with Dallas-area band SECRET OF BORIS frontman Cameron Taylor via Skype. He was a really cool dude, so I told him I’d be in town and hoped we could hang while I was. Well, as luck would have it, he, Ryan (drums), Byrd (guitar), and Ragus (bass) did in fact make it out to the gig and we wound up having an absolute fucking blast. Amidst all the laughter I did remind the boys that even though we had a lot of fun I would STILL be brutally honest about their debut album Your Ghost (out now, Cabo Records). They in turn completely respected that. What they didn’t know was that I had already gotten through it several times and I knew which way I was leaning.
That was pretty obvious to me once killer opener “Virus” grabs ahold of you in a fast-paced rocking jam that took me a couple of listens to finally get past and continue. If this isn’t their live opener, then something is definitely amiss! “Desert Blood” takes the heavy and blends it with a dance-like groove, but by no means is it electro-pop or anything. It works, mostly because it’s a curveball. The same holds true for “What You Became” with its clever use of programming that should have some asses shakin’ at the band’s CD release show this Saturday at oddly enough, The Curtain Club! One of my favorites besides the leadoff track is definitely “Lost in a Daze”. This song has arguably my favorite vocal line, and the guitars have a special kind of crunch during the hook. Then at the halfway mark shit gets real in a big hurry. The harmonies are insane, and then Byrd delivers the best solo on the disc.
“Retro” is a fun, up-tempo number with Cameron putting just a bit more growl in his vocals, while “Fall Down” echoes MY MORNING JACKET with its ethereal intro and intricate beats. Some 90’s nuances (the good ones, mind you!) permeate “Something Else” and “The Difference”, both sonically and hook-wise. And “The Watcher” seamlessly blends the sounds of yesterday and today in a song that should most definitely be a single at some point. Ryan waxes tribal on the drums for “What Have You Done” while Ragus’ bass stomps a mud hole in you throughout. I wasn’t sure which direction “From Now On” was going at first, but it manages to stay in rock territory with some nice synths in the background.
The title track serves as the album’s closer, and it’s a slow, moody tune that caps things off perfectly. It’s not over the top, or a sappy ballad, just a good song. Sometimes that’s all you need. Overall SECRET OF BORIS has crafted a sure-fire winner with Your Ghost. Expect big things from these Dallas boys. I sure do, and I ALSO expect them to represent Big D’s and Deep Ellum’s music scene to the fullest in honor of the three years I lived there!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Lost in a Daze”, “Fall Down”, Virus”, “Something Else”, “The Watcher”