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Lusitanian Ghosts ~ Exotic Quixotic

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Lusitanian Ghosts ~ Exotic Quixotic

Portuguese-Canadian-Swedish alternative neo-folk collective Lusitanian Ghosts will present their new single 'Never Less Than Lonely'. Featuring ancient Portuguese chordophones and other European string instruments, this is a brilliant taste of the sonic prism through which they present ancient sounds in the 21st Century.

Founded in 2015, Lusitanian Ghosts are Neil Leyton, Mikael Lundin (a.k.a. Micke Ghost), João Sousa, Omiri, O Gajo, Abel Beja, Janne Olson and other artists that come and go within the collective. It all began when Neil Leyton brought Micke Ghost a Viola Amarantina in Stockholm when visiting from Lisbon, and they subsequently performed in Portugal, opening for Primitive Reason on the Ericeira beach.

Dedicated to the memory of Maria Narcisa Ribeiro, Leyton's great-grandmother, this was the first song written for this second album, and one that is ultimately about life, love, loss and freedom of choice. 


"'Never Less Than Lonely' is about loss of memory... from whichever perspective, really. Alzheimer's, for example, that end of the afternoon sundowning feeling... or cancer. Losing people slowly, watching them fade... there's no reason why human beings shouldn't be allowed to exit with dignity, so I suppose the song in a way is a defence of euthanasia, which has been in the news over the last few years here in Portugal as well as other EU countries," says Neil Leyton.

Following up their latest single 'Soul Deranium', these songs preview the band's second album 'Exotic Quixotic', to be released via European Phonographic. This album, recorded on analogue tape and mixed by Sebastian Muxfeldt (Elbow, Peter Doherty, Teenage Fanclub) at Hamburg's Clouds Hills Studios, recasts heritage folk violas into rock and roll songs

Lusitanian Ghosts write from a socio-political perspective about building a better world, creating songs from and for the heart and the mind. Their compositions mix indie songwriting with traditional Portuguese instruments like the Beiroa, Campaniça, Braguesa, Terceirense and Amarantina guitars (or violas as they are called in Portugal), each with its own string arrangements and tunings.

Their debut self-titled album, recorded at Portugal's Canoa Studios and produced by Ricardo Ferreira, was a successful experiment in mixing the various regional Lusitanian (Portuguese) chordophones with what has come to be the band's unique brand of singer-songwriter rock n roll.

The documentary 'Lusitanian Ghosts: Making Of the Lusitanian Ghosts debut album - Chordophone Rock n Roll' elucidates on why most of these Portuguese ancient instruments (the real Lusitanian Ghosts) have become forgotten over time. For this album, they've done away with the guitars, using only chordophones, along with bass and drums. Even the snare was replaced on many tracks with the Adufe, a Portuguese square drum.

"This is all Chordophone violas from Portugal - namely the viola Amarantina, Braguesa, Campaniça and Terceira, played by the Lusitanian Ghosts collective including Canadian-Portuguese artist Neil Leyton, Micke Ghost (the first Swede to play the viola Amarantina!), Vasco Ribeiro Casais aka OMIRI (Portugal), Abel Beja (USA/Portugal, viola Terceira from the Azores), João Sousa on drums (sometimes replacing the snare with the Portuguese square drum Adufe) and Jan-Eric Olson on bass. But not just bass! Janne borrowed O Gajo's viola Campaniça for some extra dark licks. Chordophone rock n roll, Alt-Folk, Urban-Country-Folk, however it gets labelled what should come across are the humanist messages in these songs," says Micke Ghost. 

As of October 15, 'Never Less Than Lonely' will be available everywhere online, including Spotify and Apple Music. The full 'Exotic Quixotic' album will be released on November 19 and can be pre-ordered via Bandcamp.

"Lusitanian Ghosts impressively channel tools of the past to create a beautiful sonic vision for us listeners now. Innovative in their use of traditional instruments to make clearly modern pop-rock, this music is upbeat, quirky, feels familiar and is catchy as hell. The fact that this is entirely performed with traditional instruments is mind-boggling" ~ Big Takeover Magazine

"Highly melodic and sonically great with applaudable production, for music performed with classical instruments, this is a pertinent, contemporary collection of songs that is full dignity, the artists' remaining true to their values and ethics" ~ Amplify Music Magazine

"Warms the heart and nourishes the soul... a crooning catharsis, a rush of adrenalin, that gleams and mediates whilst chasing utopian fantasies through the interval of stripped down acoustics and clapping beats" ~ The Manc Review


Lusitanian Ghosts
Exotic Quixotic
European Phonographic
Release: 15 October 2021

Neil Leyton: Lead vocals
Mikael Lundin: viola Amarantina, backing vocals, bass, Mellotron, viola Campaniça.
Lead vocals on 'Exotic Quixotic' and 'Hometown'

João “Johnny” Sousa: drums and Adufe
Vasco Ribeiro Casais: viola Braguesa
Abel Beja: viola Terceira
Jan-Eric Olsson: bass and viola Campaniça
All songs by Neil Leyton and Mikael Lundin aka Micke Ghost
Published by Lusitanian Music Publishing
Recorded at Clouds Hill Studios, Hamburg
Engineered and Mixed by Sebastian Muxfeldt
Produced by Neil Leyton and Mikael Lundin
Mastered at Soundgarden by Florian Siller
Cover Illustration by Johan Lindberg Brusewitz


01. Soul Deranium
02. Never Less Than Lonely
03. All the Sounds
04. Exotic Quixotic
05. Older and Colder
06. Living One Life (Just Ain't Enough These Days)
07. For the Wicked
08. Lisbon Calling
09. She Couldn't Jump
10. Live the Flea

Keep up with Lusitanian Ghosts
Website | Bandcamp | Facebook | Twitter 
 Instagram | YouTube | Spotify | Apple Music

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DIFFUSION October, 14, 2021

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