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The Slow Trickle of Ghost Wars Songs Continues

Arlie Carstens of Ghost Wars, image appropriated from MySpace

Ghost Wars, Arlie Carstens' post-Juno project with Eric Fisher of Damien Jurado's band, added two more songs to its MySpace page, bringing the grand total to six. The newest entries are "Divide and Conquer," a Hüsker Dü cover that “we slowed it down till it sounds like a Nick Drake song,” and "The Conductor," a lingering piano ballad. To those scoring at home, two more songs recallling the spacious feel of Juno's "The Trail of Your Blood in the Snow" and Talk Talk's Laughing Stock, like previous Ghost Wars songs "Virginia Long Exhale" and "Lay Down Your Weapons." If you're hoping for a Juno-esque guitar epic, have patience: I understand that more guitar-centric tracks wait in the wings.

If this glacial release of music seems cruel, here's a brief recap of why there isn't a tangible copy of Ghost Wars music in my (or your) hands right now: Carstens and Fisher had recorded the album on Fisher's laptop, which was stolen from him at a Jurado show in Toronto. The back-up external hard drive had data corruption issues, leaving them with raw, unorganized data. (Whether I would buy an album of such sounds is debatable.) Given that the project involves a wide variety of collaborators in a number of locales, the process of re-recoding this material has been arduous, but Carstens and company have been back in the studio several times since the hard drive disaster.

I'm still holding out a spot on my year-end list—whichever year it may be—for the (hopefully) inevitable Ghost Wars LP, given the strength of the available tracks, but I do wonder how much longer I'll have to wait.

New Ghost Wars Song

Ghost Wars posted a new song on their MySpace page tonight. I've upped the song, "Virginia ,Long Exhale," as well. Put on some headphones so those clarinets don't get lost in the hum of the window fan.

There's also an update about the recording on the page (the short: the computer holding the ProTools sessions was stolen, the back-up hard drive is nearly unsalvageable, now the debate is between re-recording or slowly recovering past sessions), which may reconvene in August or September. Again, if Ghost Wars release an album in the next seven months, all of the other records are jockeying for second on my year-end list.