In Hear This, A.V. Club writers sing the praises of songs they know well—some inspired by a weekly theme and some not, but always songs worth hearing.
The last the world heard of Girls Against Boys was 2002’s fantastic but sadly overlooked You Can’t Fight What You Can’t See, which capped an excellent 14-year run that appeared to be ending. Aside from a pair of one-off reunions for All Tomorrow’s Parties in 2006 and Touch And Go’s 25th-anniversary party in 2007, the band has been dormant since the touring cycle for that album. Fans had no reason to believe Girls Against Boys would return.
That makes the new EP, The Ghost List—released this week—so exciting: It’s five new songs from a group that sounds like it never went away. The band has previewed a couple tracks over the course of the year, first “It’s A Diamond Life” back in April and “60 Is Greater Than 15” in July. The latter captures Girls Against Boys well in the space of three and a half minutes: the wash of discordant guitar that gives way to that murky, insistent bass line and Eli Janney’s half-sung/half-spoken vocals. Then it segues into a chorus that’s almost incongruously poppy, until it becomes obvious that “poppy” is a relative term for Girls Against Boys. No other band makes menace sound so alluring.
While The Ghost List offers a fine return to form, it also only whets the appetite. More, please.