Team Ghost – Broadcast, April 10th 2013

“Somebody’s watching/It turns me on/Let’s keep on fucking, baby/Until it comes…” drawls Team ghost frontman Nicolas Fromageau into the microphone, amidst synth harmonies and power chords. The French five-piece may look like accountants warming up the office party – but do not be deceived by the middle-aged image. Tonight Team Ghost create electro soundscapes to fill the tiny basement of Broadcast, and probably reach the other end of Sauchiehall Street while they’re at it.

Rewind a couple of hours and Black Balloons start the evening with some pleasingly generic Scottish garage rock. Next are Sonic Hearts Foundation, who make impressive use of a reverb pedal and a megaphone. With tracks based on Orwell’s 1984, what more could you ask of an indie band? Look them up.

Team Ghost open with ‘All We Left Behind’ which soon explodes into a thrashing chorus and the small crowd sits up and takes notice. The set tonight is comprised almost entirely of songs from new album ‘Rituals’ with the syncopated drum rhythms of lead single ‘Dead Film Star’ ensuring that every head in the room is nodding out of time. At times Fromageau’s vocals are drowned out so that unfortunately the audience misses his lyrics. Mid-set, one questionable synth solo sounds uncomfortably like a kazoo. The music is at its best when the vocal is electronically messed-up through the synth, as on ‘Pleasure That Hurts’ where their sprawling, prog-rock noise makes the band look as if they are trying to exorcise demons with their instruments. There are even echoes of Sonic Youth on the guitar feedback of ‘Broken Devices’.

One song is introduced as being “very French… sorry about that”. Another band member quickly retorts: “I am not sorry!” Such is the boldness of these Parisians. Though he left in 2004 Fromageau was a founding member of M83, of ‘Midnight City’ fame, however even though his new project hasn’t enjoyed the mainstream success of his ex-comrades tonight proves that you don’t need a Made in Chelsea theme to put on a haunting show.

[Ellen MacAskill]

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