Boo! 16 Ghostly Monikered DJs and Bands

By Tristan Parker

The world is teeming with ghosts at the moment. Don’t worry though, it’s not some kind of supernatural invasion, it’s just a massively popular naming trend in the music world that a huge number of DJs, bands and rappers have got involved with over the past few years. Don’t believe us? Feast your eyes and ears on the below…

1. Holy Ghost!
This duo on James Murphy’s DFA Records make gleaming, pop-blushed disco-house that happily salutes nostalgic electro and classic synthpop. Their vibe isn’t a million miles away from Murphy’s ex-Punk Funk champions LCD Soundsystem. But Holy Ghost! favor a more retro angle, nodding towards classic disco and funk acts. Check recent track “Dumb Disco Ideas” for  example.

2. Ghosting Season
Why bother fretting over adjectives and descriptions when the band you’re writing about it have already nailed it? On their website, UK act Ghosting Season describe themselves as “a duo crafting shimmering electronica and icy techno from Manchester.” That sums it up nicely, although modesty prevents them from saying that said music is great as well.

3. Ghostpoet
Smoky, downtempo UK rapper and producer Ghostpoet was nominated for the respected Mercury Prize in 2011. He may not have won, but he continued to innovate with his blend of lo-fi electronics and urban observations on his second album, Some Say I So I Say Light, released in May.

4. TV Ghost
Indiana post-punk band TV Ghost specialize in gritty, raw art-rock, fizzing with distorted guitar riffs and atmospheres that flit beautifully between sludgy and frenetic, usually with an eerie, horror-film tinge to it.

5. Ghost
Doomy Swedish metal band Ghost don’t sound quite as scary as they look, despite sometimes coming onstage dressed as evil-looking monks and a zombie Pope. They actually mix a garage-rock vibe into their heavier doom-mongering, making them an interesting listen. But they like their anonymity – they’re constantly in masks and disguise their voice for interviews – so don’t expect to see them posing for smiley fan photos after gigs.

6. The Ghost Inside
No messing about with this Californian hardcore band – towering, jagged guitars, hyper-speed drumming and plenty of screaming vocals. Definitely a bit scary if you’re more accustomed to kicking back by the pool listening to Zero 7.

7. DJ Ghostfader
French dubstep and “crunkstep” producer who comes from the big-jagged-bass-wobbles school of dubstep. According to his SoundCloud blurb, Ghostfader’s music “highlights the audio spectrum and its impact on the human psyche, the frequencies acting as synaptic triggers on sensors of pleasure. This cocktail plunges the dancer into a strange trance close to a sexual experience, every sequence [is] the prelude of a discovery of unavowable pleasures.” So be careful before you click play, okay?

8. Ghost Wave
Sunny, surfy, psyche-pop band from New Zealand who do a nice line in short, sweet, blissed-out songs that make you want to shove your computer off your desk, run out of the office while stripping down to just the bear essentials and hit the beach with a Cadillac full of buddies and cold ones, man.

9. Ghost Loft
Deservedly hyped L.A. outfit that make ultra-lush, lo-fi electronica with beautiful R&B layers. There are definite echoes of The xx and even Summer Camp in there, but Ghost Loft have a sunnier disposition, resulting in some glimmering songs – particularly “So High” and “Seconds” – that have received a lot of airplay on the alternative circuit.

10. Ghost Beach
This fluffy-as-a-cloud Brooklyn synth-pop duo clearly get most of their musical kicks from the decade that popularized shoulder pads, and they pull it off rather well. Think Passion Pit meets Hot Chip, with a dash of Talk Talk and some bouncy choruses.

11. Ghost Town DJ’s
This hip-hop act may have only been active for a few years, halting business in 1997, but their sweet, buttery, bass-tinged R&B track ‘My Boo’ rightly lives on. Yeah, that’s right, Ghost Town DJ’s got there way before Alicia and Usher, and their song was way better, despite even their questionable apostrophe use.

12. DJ Ghost(s)
Okay, so as you might expect, there are quite a few DJ Ghosts out there. There’s an industrial electro producer from Atlanta, a Brutal techno/hardstyle DJ from Belgium, a turntablist who’s part of hip-hop party crew The 5 Star Generals, and probably a whole load more. Everybody, it seems, loves the ghostly vibe. See if you can guess which one the below track is from.

13. DJ Ghostrider
Jamaican-born, NYC-based club DJ who spins mellow soul, R&B, reggae, hip-hop, house. Smoooooooth.

14. Ghostface Killah
Yeah, we all know this ghostly moniker – Wu-Tang member, super-sharp rapper, hip-hop heavyweight and general, all-round bad-ass. The solo success he achieved outside of Wu-Tang demonstrated his own musical prowess, as did his prolific release schedule. Still a bit of legend.

15. SpaceGhostPurrp
Talented alt-hip-hopper and founding member of Raider Klan, SGP, AKA Markese Rolle, favors a smoky, sedated rapping style that frequently hits somewhere between eerie and totally absorbing. However, Rolle recently claimed he was quitting rapping (though he’s done so before), but will continue his beat-making, which is in demand from names like GZA and Odd Future.

16. Ghostdad
No, not the zany 1990 Bill Cosby comedy, but a Brooklyn-based DJ, producer and video artist who loves getting on the remix, it seems. His style is pretty eclectic, to say the least, veering from big electro thumpers to the track below, a moombahton refix of Phil Collins’ “In the Air Tonight.” You have been warned.

Ghost image via Shutterstock