That Ghost: Sonoma County Psych

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

On Songs Out Here, Ryan Schmale creates heavy, pysch-tinged folk music. Most songs are built around a gentle strumming acoustic and Schmale’s slightly off-kilter vocal style. Either Schmale was recording in a tunnel or he loaded on layers of reverb to get the album’s distant, lo-fi sound. As the story goes, parts of the record were written on Jack London’s old estate in Sonoma County. Songs Out Here definitely has an eerie, woodsy quality. On “Here Is The Hour” Schmale echoes the London-ian vibe. “It’s not dark yet, I’m not tired, I don’t need blankets, just a fire,” he sings over one of his more lively garage-y beats. While Songs Out Here can be a bit monotonous and clunky, Schmale is just the guy you’d want to have with a guitar and a bottle of whiskey at your campfire.

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