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Ghost | Opus Eponymous | review | metal | Lollipop

Ghost

Opus Eponymous (Rise Above)
By Mike Delano

As the Sunday Morning Mass organ sounds of opener "Deus Culpa" attest, Ghost's debut album has a reverent feel to it. Opus Eponymous is a loving portrait of heavy metal circa the NWOBHM, although it strips out a lot of the speed and punk energy of that era in service of expertly crafted mid-tempo songs. Everything is in its right place in these nine tracks, and the vocals and guitars pull from the finest of influences, incorporating Mercyful Fate's theatricality, the subverted pop sensibility of Black Sabbath, and the peerless melodies and song structures of Blue Öyster Cult. The overtly pop sound of some songs, like the irresistibly catchy odes to Satan, "Stand By Him" and "Satan Prayer," are enough to raise an eyebrow as to whether this is deadly serious or a goof on metal (or if They Might Be Giants or Ween have a side project we don't know about). Either way, whether you're grooving along with the affable incantation of "Ritual" or the King Diamond-on-Quaaludes "Elizabeth," this is too good to resist.
(www.riseaboverecords.com, www.metalblade.com)

 


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