Philip Marino has returned with his brand new album Chasing Ghosts. He has assembled another collection of stories with the help of Louisa Charrington (Percussion & backing vocals), Thom Aston (Guitar) and, Charlie Charlton (Bass). He has also recruited the talents of Jack Gordon (Drums), Mary Felgate (Violin), David Phillips (Pedal steel) and, Adam Bowers (Guitar, keys, bass, percussion, & backing vocals).
The album begins with “The Way it Goes” which introduces you to what Marino has to offer. It has a gentle acoustic sound that subtly grabs your attention. The Americana vibe it creates feels like a spotlight for this storyteller. He uses additional musical layers throughout the release to add a little more character to his audio landscape.
As each song plays, you begin to notice and appreciate the lyrical side to his songwriting. Even from the early works, this has been a quality of his that has always impressed. Especially with lines from the title track “Chasing ghosts in your dreams / All those ghosts in your head / Not what it seems / Shadows of what’s been.” It takes you back to a time when the words had more importance than the music itself.
“This Time” is another gem. It makes you think about your journey in life, thanks to lyrics such as “I guess that I got lost in some of my dreams / Woke to find life’s brighter than I seemed / So if it’s is my final chance / Then I’m going down with new plans.”
Philip Marino never fails to impress with his stories or how they are delivered
Stories mean nothing without the right delivery. Marino has a less is more approach when he sings. He brings an honest emotion to his tone, which is as captivating as the music. “The Way That We Live” shows off how good he can sound. During the verses, there is a soft warmth to his voice which then packs a punch during each chorus.
It is difficult to talk about this release without mentioning “No Turning Back”. There is something special about this song with its upbeat feel and intertwining vocals. Marino is not renowned for making you jump around, but the outro will make you want to move. A little different to his usual sound, but one that should be explored more in the future.
Philip Marino has created another impressive release. Chasing Ghosts ticks all the right boxes for fans of Americana. For those who are not keen on this genre, the craft of his stories is worth a listen.