The Forest of Alluring Homes

Apart from its expressive power, in ways strange and familiar, the most interesting thing I find about art is its openness to interpretation; perhaps the degrees to which these are manifest are defining features – but not necessarily always – of great art. If indeed that premise is true, then Fireghost’s music surely qualifies for greatness.

On the face of it, the debut EP, “Among The Leaves” of this solo project of Nihal Anand (who is also part of Stuck In November and has another project, Deadstar), is an easy, pleasing listen. The word ‘idyllic’ comes to mind. And that mind could also stray to thinking ‘Ah! this harks back thematically in a gentle way to “Songs From The Wood” by Jethro Tull’. Quite reasonable thoughts; on the surface. But pay a bit more attention, listen a few times more and a hypnotising picture of shifting colours could possibly emerge. That, however, would depend on how much free rein those horses in your head are given to discover the subversive delights of this set.

Regret of a messy creation and a long fall. Did you break, are you hurt? You will heal, dear for there is redemption in dreamy ambulations through the forest, kind invitations to pleasant homes of its denizens; even the forest ghost is friendly. Oh, so sweet! But maybe it’s just your mind wearied (yet made wary) by what you have left behind that makes harbour for a warning that you could be headed into a trap of endearing promises and enduring incarceration, a sylvan “Hotel California”.

It is the same; deep underground…

Life in the burrow (underground)
Hide from birds that soar
Search for our final home
In the mother core

Cast your nose forward
Your eyes are no good
Here in the tunnels
Under the woods

…or high above it.
A prison.

Rest your head and dream of feathers
On a windy night
You’ll join us
And never
Touch the ground

A home, a belonging, a family? Really?
You’ll be lost, one of many in servitude.

Come and join the lovely chorus
Singing here among the leaves
Lose yourself in thousand voices
Home is found

And the sound of the many is better than one
Better than one

That ghost you met; yes, very friendly. But why is he so familiar? As realisation dawns (or your mind comes unhinged), he’s you.

All alone I have wandered the earth
(I think I should go now)
Waiting for some one to take me home
(Oh my mother is waiting)
Hide me in deep your garden shed
(No I don’t have the key)
Or in that box right beside your bed
(How do you know about that)

Hold my hand and lead me
Down the mountain
To your house so warm
And lights so tender

Wash my bones
And lay me down to rest
In sheets and downy blankets

The honeyed words come at you warm and thick but it is all you can do stay afloat. But for how long? Your fevered mind bays for cool succour. That lake. You could walk in, you know. Find shelter everlasting. Be a forest ghost. Wouldn’t that be lovely?

Don’t be too scared
I would never
Pull you in
They cannot know all my intentions

Everything’s lovely under the lake
Just kick off your shoes and
Come in halfway
I’d never hurt you
On such a nice day

Everything’s lovely under the lake
Just close your eyes and
Open your lungs and
Sink with me
To the bottom

Won’t you please come home?