At every layer, Space Ghost is complex and remarkable. Attia Taylor’s debut is a tangled narrative built on hypnotic melodies and transfixing, elaborate electronic arrangements. This is a story about youthful aloneness and the shapes grief takes. While each song documents a different period of growth, her voice cuts through the impossibilities to create a spectral environment where change and determination flourish.
Sonically, Space Ghost is effusive. The music digs through funk-infused stretches and dream pop atmospheres, coloring every facet with a psychedelic sheen to arrive in its own interdimensional reverie. The enchanting arrangements are a canvas for Taylor’s vivid lyrics and otherworldly vocals. On the title track, propulsive rhythms guide airy synths through deep space minefields as Taylor calls from farther out, “Space ghost comes in all different waveforms.” We’re hypnotized, pulled toward her beacon without understanding.
“Broad and Cherry” follows with expansive, repetitive chord changes opening like a sky church over nervous, skittering beats. Looping arrangements build tension and grandeur in each successive pass-through. It feels mythic, a memory where the bad parts have been removed, but they’re creeping back in no matter what we do. Taylor is effervescent, holding listeners in the palm of her hand as she shifts between different registers. “Say whatever you want. I’ll follow through,” she repeats as though she’s reassuring herself and no one else. It’s the destination dreamed of in “Space Ghost,” but the details are fuzzy, and the facade is full of cracks. When Taylor sings, “Say whatever you want, I’ll follow through,” over and over, I don’t feel as lost. Things aren’t necessarily okay, but there’s a different connection holding on now.
There’s a recurring theme of beautiful, catchy songs that tell complicated stories. It’s one of the record’s greatest strengths. “Dog and Pony Show” is hypnagogic, floating lithely through mesmerizing vocal melodies that spin into eternity, while “Basic Economics” channels late-night escape into self-aware dejection. Taylor shifts from one facet to another without blinking an eye with a shapeshifting prowess that reminds me most of Broadcast. When she calls out, “This sound is beautiful. Play it for me again,” in the synthetic magic maze of “Wanderer,” it’s a calling card for Space Ghost as a whole.
Throughout her debut, Taylor’s openness and vulnerability shine. Every ounce of her is woven into the harmonic electronic bliss of Space Ghost, but even more, these raw expressions are an invitation. Taylor has worked hard to process so much and share it with the world in an intimate, bewitching performance. In her words and deeds, a narrative unfolds. We may see pieces of ourselves here and think about our own experiences and where they’ve led us, but this is her story, and the ending is still to come.