There are few days more important in the music business than release days. While big festivals, hometown gigs, and various other days and events are very important, there’s something special about a band releasing music out into the world. On Friday, rock/jam band Ghost Light released their excellent debut album, Best Kept Secrets, and played to a receptive house at the Turf Club.
Though Ghost Light is fresh off the release of their debut album, they’ve been playing together in the studio and on the road for over a year. This was evident in their performance which, despite featuring lots of improvisation, never felt unfocused. The jams were solid, engaging, and diverse enough to ensure they wouldn’t lose the crowd. Every song on the album was played (roughly in order), and most of them got the exploratory jam treatment. The first set, which lasted a little over an hour, featured only five songs, nearly all of which the group jammed on and through.
The best part about the show was the way Ghost Light blended their complex arrangements with the improvisational segments. The audience was particularly enthusiastic whenever the group emerged from a lengthy jam into a new song or another segment of a song they played earlier. When they executed this effectively, as they would throughout, the effect was indisputable, and the payoffs worth the wait.
Set two saw the Quintet strike a slightly different song/jam balance, with more of an emphasis on the former. The first half of the set, in particular, was about as tight as the group became in the show, as well as featuring their most energetic moments. The heights reached during this portion would match or eclipse the high points hit during the rest of the show, of which there were many.
Though the band is still in its early stages, there’s no doubt in the potential they display. For a band only one album and a few tours deep, they exude the onstage confidence and chemistry of veterans, leaving little question that their trajectory is headed anywhere but up.