Sometimes, when you get to know the people behind your favorite music, you get disappointed – the person is just not what you imagined from the music and the message you were interpreting. Sometimes it’s just the other way around: you like the music even though it’s not your favorite band, you don’t make assumptions about the people, maybe you don’t know how they look like and then you meet them and you are mighty impressed and from then on listening to the music benefits from that because you understand it better.
I had this experience recently when I met Inger Gossamer from THE NUMBER ZERO in Tokyo and I also felt this way when I met Sophia at Metal Female Voices Fest in 2013. Back then, no music was out yet by her new band SEASON OF GHOSTS. I only knew her former Band BLOOD STAIN CHILD and found them interesting because of the mixture of metal and electronic elements. One year later, “The Human Paradox” was released and the whole package of great music, Sophia‘s personality and knowing some facts about her life and her career made it special to listen to the album – a totally different and intense experience.
Before I listened to “A Leap of Faith”, we had a chat with Sophia and her fiancé and bandmate Zombie Sam and both were super open with us. Sophia told us that on the whole album, she is talking to her (former) self most of the time. With that in mind, you of course focus on the lyrics.
SEASON OF GHOSTS’ “A Leap of Faith” is music for grown-ups.
Even though, Sophia said there is no love song on the album, ‘Asteroid’ is a very romantic song: Beginning with a short sung introduction, which BTW already is kind of romantic:
“Through the corners of the earth I have travelled just to find you.”
The vocal line is followed by the direct response from Zombie Sam on guitar, responding to both – the melody and the message – with tons of emotion in it.
Musically, “A Leap of Faith” differs a lot form its predecessor. While “The Human Paradox” was very electronic with a lot of different vocal styles and samples, “A Leap of Faith” is a real rock album. The songs are down to earth – while the former album was kind of from outer space – the sound is grounded and the vocals do not change that often between singing, speaking, whispering and growling. In fact, there are no growls at all on “A Leap of Faith”.
SEASON OF GHOSTS recorded in a studio in Turin and worked with an experienced producer. So the band sounds grown up, the music is more serious, like a person who found its focus on reality after being lost somehow. While “The Human Paradox” sounded (and was?) a solo project, the successor seems to be a co-production of all band members plus the producer.
SEASON OF GHOSTS tell personal stories to encourage the listener.
As I mentioned, Sophia is talking to herself in the songs – encouraging, but also looking back on and reappraising her past. ‘Listen’ appeals to people, who are close to you and pretend to take care of you like family or close friends but are not interested in you as a person, because you are weird to them (Sophia calls herself an alien, because she’s been alienated so often). ‘What A Time To Be Alive’ questions our lifestyle(s) and ‘Almost Human’ is a song about someone (Sophia) trying to save the world (or individuals) and realizing, she doesn’t have the power to fight all the fights.
All the lyrics on “A Leap of Faith” are serious and honest, and so the title track is perfectly placed in the middle of the album. This song is the most encouraging one on the album and sums up the other songs as if it would say:
“No matter what happens to you, don’t give up. It’s worth the fight.”
It tells you that you might feel and even are alone, but it is important that you follow your dreams and plans, because you are only responsible for yourself in the end. You might find the right people, you will of course get in touch with people that stand in your way and it is totally ok to not be everybody’s friend, because at the end of the day, you’ll have to look in your own eyes in the mirror and be ok with yourself.
“A Leap of Faith” tells the story of a person who finally found themself, which doesn’t mean, you have no worries at all. Life goes on, no matter what happens, and even though you’ve made mistakes (like everybody else), you can find a way to move on if you just try to make the best out of your situation. For me, the call to action on the album is: take a leap of faith to stand up and care for yourself. And that’s one of the most difficult things one can do in life. Many people fail, but with SEASON OF GHOSTS‘ new album to encourage you, you can do it.
If you want to know more about Sophia and Zombie Sam and the circumstances for recording “A Leap of Faith”, listen to our podcast episode with them both as guests. Very personal topics, but of course also music!
SEASON OF GHOSTS – “A Leap of Faith” Tracklist:
- The Road so far
- A Place to call Home
- A Leap of Faith
- How the Story ends
- Almost human
- What a Time to be alive
- You are not your Pain
Are you a SEASON OF GHOSTS-fan? Are you looking forward to the album? Tell us in the comments and share this review!