Holy Ghost!

Work

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Their Holy Ghost! discography two albums and over a dozen singles and EPs deep, Alex Frankel and Nick Millhiser wound down their decade-long affiliation with the DFA label in 2016. The duo reappeared a couple years later on a split 12" bearing the logo of West End Records -- the key disco label founded by the late Mel Cheren -- and a remix from dance music visionary Tom Moulton. The West End association, primarily cosmetic (if responsibly so) through an arrangement with rights handlers BMG, continues with Work. Otherwise, it's business as usual for Frankel and Millhiser. Assisted by a small crew of mostly returning singers and players -- Kosuke Kasza, Monika Heidemann, and Nancy Whang, plus a few others -- they subtly refine their mix of synth pop and electronic post-disco, specializing as ever in rippling, vaguely European grooves with studied hints of groups ranging from Chic to peak Tears for Fears. Holy Ghost! party like it's no later than 1985 with Frankel and company singing in deceptively genial fashion of stasis, stress, anxiety, and faltering relationships, sounding only slightly more tense than they do during the fleeting good times. Nothing is as distinctive as past delights like "I Will Come Back," "Wait & See," and "Okay," but it's all sturdy and even-keeled, programmed for start-to-finish listening.

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