Pleasant Retro Pop Courtesy of Belle Ghoul

Any track that prominently features a horn section will usually catch my attention. Pair this with a decidedly upbeat sixties retro sound, complimentary boy/girl harmonies, and you’ve really got something to get excited about.

Cue Belle Ghoul’s “Neighborhood” a four minute pop gem that nicely slots in with the likes of The New Pornographers and post-Jeepster Belle and Sebastian (i.e., starting with Dear Catastrophe Waitress). The boys and girls of BG even add a little voice filtering, engineered fuzz, and choral whistles, giving the track an AM nostalgia factor, a sort of auditory Instagram filter. In keeping with the adolescent fervor of the piece, the song is a bittersweet reflection on the frustrations we all have from time to time with our surroundings.

So if you’ve already had enough of the Holiday Bells that jingle, check out a more mirthful and less tinseled version here.

Also, if you believe their bandcamp site this track will be or was released in October of 2020, which makes me think the future is looking decidedly bright.

Indie Trends?: Belles Are Wild! Who’d a thunk that “Belle” would become possibly the next “it” indie-rock band name? By my count, we’ve now got:

  • The Black Belles (Nashville, Goth Rock, Third Man Records),
  • Wild Belle (Chicago, Reggae-Rock, Sony Music),
  • (the aforementioned) Belle & Sebastian (Glasgow, Indie-Baroque Pop, Jeepster/Matador), and
  • even the homophonic (yes, it’s a word) Sleigh Bells (BKLYN, Thrash-Pop, Mom and Pop Records) and
  • Broken Bells (Portland/White Plains, Electro-Baroque, Columbia Records).

Perhaps Deers and Bears aren’t as cute and appealing anymore?

curious but not overly concerned,


…in the words of Dylan “ring them bells ye heathens from the mountaintops”

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