The Ghost Inside

Album: Broken Bells (2010)

Songfacts®:

  • Broken Bells is the self-titled debut album from Grammy-winning artist producer Brian Burton (aka Danger Mouse) and James Mercer, who is best known as the founder, principle songwriter and frontman of the Shins.
  • This song is different to anything Mercer had done vocally before. He told The Sun February 19, 2010: "I sing in a falsetto for the first time. Brian just encouraged me to experiment."
    Burton added: "We'd already done a lot of the songs by that point. He'd tried a lot of things vocally and it sounded a bit like the Bee Gees. That's how I heard it - like a psychedelic Bee Gees."
  • Christina Hendricks, who plays Joan Holloway in the acclaimed TV series Mad Men, stars as a "beautiful android" in the song's music video. Mercer explained the collaboration to Entertainment Weekly:"We assumed we would ask and that'd be it. She's got to be so busy, and who the hell are we? But she said yes! Turns out she's a fan of our record."
  • When asked by Spinner UK what was on Broken Bells mind when they penned this, Burton replied: "We try to shy away from giving too literal of meanings on songs. There's three different of kind of melodies and sections in the song itself. There's [James] doing the falsetto and then there's the doubled kind of bridge and then there's the outro that really sounds like, you know, very James Mercer. It turned into this longer song, but it was one of the last songs we did."

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