If you’re in the mood for some unfiltered rockabilly, then take five dollars, head over to Skip Jensen’s Bandcamp page and let this one-man band add some spice to your blues collection. The Spirit of the Ghost is largely a raw and unrehearsed journey. Jensen’s vocals wail about, often ignoring the suggestion of a tune, while his guitar offers some catchy riffs accompanied with a rhythm section driven by his feet. Jensen indulges us with multi-track recording tactics on a few songs, but largely the music is akin to the live experience, with slight mistakes adding a sense of intimacy. For most of the record, it’s as if Jensen walked into the studio, straddled his drum kit, strapped on his guitar, pressed the record button, played for 40 minutes and called it a day. The result is unadulterated blues-rock, void of any pretentious elements. If you require a comparison to put Jensen’s talent in perspective, think Mark Sultan (BBQ). Seeing as how they are both based in Montreal, often play as a one man band, and have that raw ‘50s blues-punk feel, the parallels are striking.
The Spirit of the Ghost is Jensen’s first full length offering, though he has released a number of seven-inches and is involved with numerous bands, including Scat Rag Boosters. The LP is consistent with his previous endeavors, highlighting his expressive guitar work and vocal bellows. From bouncy riffs in “Circling Around” to the country blues feel of “Revival,” The Spirit of the Ghost jangles its way through punchy motifs and catchy jingles. Jensen has achieved a sense of vitality by recording an album that resembles a live gig; this unfettered quality makes The Spirit of the Ghost highly recommended.