Ghost – Popestar (EP)

Ghost released last week their latest EP named “Polestar”. As they have previously mentioned, this EP has followed the same track then their previous EP “If you have Ghost” and consists of covers. Their previous cover was simply serendipitous, putting a big layer of dark and heavy metal into pop songs, giving that nightmarish and horrific picture. For instance “I’m A Marionette” initially a pop-song by ABBA suddenly became a dark, nightmarish and depressing song. Or listen to “Crucified” bartering the baroque of The Army of Lovers into a mysterious and occult song with the voice of Papa Emeritus.
Altough this dark, doom and gloom is not present in the EP, being more into a progressive metal side, this second EP just reinforce one opinion I have about Ghost: these guys are like the King Midas. They transform any cover they touch into some masterpiece gold.
I will not post any track from the EP, except anything officially on Youtube.

The first track is “Square Hammer” that is the only track not being a cover. Using a thematic inspired by Fritz Lang “Metropolis” and “Nosferatu”, the title is very catchy and maybe suggest a transition of the band into a more progressive metal/rock domain but still much more enjoyable.

The second track is a cover of “Nocturnal Me” by Echo and the Bunnymen. This is the track that gave me some chills down the spine, by giving a mysterious and oppressing atmosphere that was the hallmark of their previous EP. I could even feel like the influence of Fabio Frizzi in that one. Thats in my opinion one of the best cover of that EP that overpass the original song.

The third track is certainly the most bizarre cover because of his clear deviation of the original song. If King Midas could transform some electro-poop into gold, so does Ghost. Instead of having some electro easy-listening song of the original, Ghost did some remarkable work on this one. With an opening sequence that would reminds the early work of Pink Floyd, replacing the electronic beep sounds with a dry guitar and atmospheric sounds. It gives some interesting ambient atmosphere to the song. If you have to compare to the original video, that would something you would illustrate with some kind of refined and zen environment, almost like an Apple advertisement.

The fourth song is taken from Eurythmics “Missionary Man”, giving a strong 70’s progressive rock blended with a touch of blues. It is also the least favorite one.

Finally, the last one. Maybe the most unknown except maybe by Swedes that grew in the 80’s. It is called “Bible” by Imperiet. Dont be surprised if the number of viewers on the Youtube literally explode. Thats certainly THE COVER of that EP. Ghost transformed that new-wave song into something as powerful as “He Is” from their last album “Meliora”. It is so well arranged and produced that you still have the original feel of the 80’s into that song but with the layer of progressive metal of the band. It is so good you could almost sneak it into your Sunday church and bluff the preacher on that as “He Is” was. This is where I give the genius touch to the band that somehow succeed to humanize the beast with many names.

Ghost has some bad rep among metal elitists but indeed I found the band provides this nice escape pod by nicely blending progressive metal and pop songs, transforming with their magic touch into heavy masterpiece.

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