How do we define “ghost”? Are they amorphous shapes that can fly and move through walls, but also talk like humans? Perhaps they’re a version of Casper the Friendly Ghost? Or even, have people’s corporeal selves and the five senses been figments of our imaginations? Ghosts are a construct created by our thinking selves as disconnected apparitions, desperate for some semblance of physical and emotional bonding.
In the verse previous to the one on ghosts, singer-songwriter Matthew Brue and producer-instrumentalist David Butler posed an arguably bleaker thought experiment.
Of all the existential tangents, this one, if carried to its farthest extent, has the potential to level listeners, to make them, at noon, crave crawling back into bed and calling it a day.
Humans have long been the only animal species conscious of our own mortality, a double-edged sword to be sure. Ephemeral experiences have been more beautifully meaningful; simultaneously, they’ve left us stricken with fear that it’s all going to come crashing to a halt one day… maybe today.
Whenever that day does come for each of us, what will that be like? Those who’ve been pronounced legally dead and revived by medical personnel lack substantive memories that can explain what we should expect. Short of eyewitness accounts or spiritual faith, there has been no confirmation of an afterlife, reincarnation, etc.
What if listeners could no longer hear? What if existence merely ended?
Putting aside the calamity that would be a world without music, what about a world asleep? No matrix, nor simulation-running overlords. Complete unconsciousness, that unfathomable absence of life, a black nothingness that rendered us devoid of thoughts, feelings, or even awareness of our own identities, will be all that we have left.
If listeners were fond of relatedly masochistic hypotheticals, the EP/Film/Q&A for Skeletons III would be well-worth the time, and “Losing My Mind” would be the perfect primer to that short film shot in Joshua Tree, California.