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digipack cd. 'new love' is the second album on upset the rhythm for former ghosts. former ghosts is jamie stewart (xiu xiu), freddy rupert (this song is a mess but so am i) and nika roza (zola jesus). 'new love'. it's two words, but one title. 'new love' is a cure for the heartbreak and jealousy of the past, but a beginning to a new obsession: the search to replace the old love. this obsessive search radiates through former ghosts' latest album. freddy ruppert's newest collaborative project is as much an emotional obsession as it is an obsession with sound. the new album is poppier, cleaner. more seductive, sweet, charming, but more bitter. the claustrophobic reverb from the last album has been replaced. the syrupy, entangling wash of sound has been hollowed out and exploded in size. 'new love' listens hollow, empty, endless. but as bleak and expansive as the new album is, the engine that propels it forward is obsession - an obsession over loss of love, over jealousy, over ruppert's inability to move on from the past - and not simply a loss of love, but a love of loss. the vast sense of space in the album doubles the feeling of being on the outside of a relationship - of being the third unrequited member of a romance between a couple oblivious to your heartbreak - outside the feelings of someone who has, long ago, fallen out of love with you. maybe, in this way, the female collaborators on the album (nika roza danilova
of zola jesus and first-timer yasmine kittles of tearist) materialize more as simulations, stand-ins or memories of lost loves than as simple musical partners. roza danilova's intense, operatic style and kittles' softer, coquettish beckoning surround ruppert as the core, writhing, masculine presence in an open, chaotic album.