FEATURE: Getting To Know…Ghost//Signals | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Retro dark popsters Ghost//Signals are set to play Independent in Sunderland on Friday 2nd November, and before that, we found out a little more…

So, tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?
I’m Rick, I sing/whine and play guitar in a band called Ghost//Signals, based in the North East. I know ‘North East’ is geographically broad but we literally have members all over Sunderland, Newcastle and Gateshead. 

What’s the first record you ever bought?
With my own hard cash, Pulp’s His N Hers. Seminal album – still listen to it today (Pink Glove man – what a tune!). 

What’s your guilty pleasure musically?
Oh the line that constitutes a guilty pleasure is so blurry these days innit. I still listen to Shakespear’s Sister occasionally. I think they’re often seen as a novelty pop act due to the ‘Stay’ single, but if you watch any live videos/listen to the albums, they were actually very formidable musicians & songwriters in their own right. It’s awesome that feminism in music is picking up the pace, but we have had some unsung champions already that should be celebrated. 
Another instance being when Ghost//Signals were recently asked to play Evo Emerging at quite short notice. I’d already made plans to go and see a Boy George Tribute act with some mates just for the craic (Boy Geordie – he was class, check him out). Years ago I’d probably have never confessed to sacking off a major Ouseburn event to go and see a Boy George tribute but couldn’t give less of a shit now. I’d already seen Casual Threats & Mouses by that point anyway so left very happy. 
Our drummer Mark went through a phase of getting pissed and sending people Def Leppard videos at 4am on weekdays. No-one was safe, not me, not the band, not even our studio engineer/producer Andi. 
Does Paul Young count? 

Favourite film of all time?
Really depends what day you ask. Ranges from The Goonies, The Lost Boys, Flatliners (original), through to Twin Peaks:Fire Walk with Me, The Motorcycle Diaries or Dallas Buyer’s Club. 
Oh and every single 80s Christmas Movie. Not convinced I’ve seen all of them, but they’re probably still favourites.  

Your guilty pleasure film?
Jaws 4. A shark that has the ability to follow a family from Masachussets to the Bahama’s is far greater a threat than any Megalodon. 

If you could recommend one TV series to binge watch, what would it be?
Aside from Twin Peaks, the 1996 TV Adaptation of Neil Gaiman’s ‘Neverwhere’. It still has the magic you’d expect from a Neil Gaiman movie, just with 80s Doctor Who production values. 

Your favourite book?
Party Monster by James St James. A lovely and ultimately tragic insight into 80s/90s New York. I remember quite liking the film adaptation at first, but came across a bit crap/contrived last time I watched it. 

Who or what makes you laugh the most?
Satirical Comedy – and it’s bittersweet the conditions are so ripe for it at the moment. 

Who or what makes you sad?
Two causations that jump to mind – fellow humans in a bad place & animal cruelty. You’ll tend to see G//S either play or curate a few charity gigs around Autumn/Winter time to tackle both….been doing so since inception, often with socialist themes. We’re not preachers, but if we can’t be a successful band, at least use what we’re doing as a platform for compassion. 

If you had super power, what would it be?
The ability to reset caffeine tolerances on demand would be really helpful. 

And finally, you get to play a board game with any three famous people from history, who do you choose and what’s the board game?
The ouija board was actually marketed as a board game right? I think I would just use that to have a friendly chat with Tony Hart, Rik Mayall & now Geoffrey from Rainbow. 

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