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When I first came to red about this album on Metal Archives, I had just taken a listen to the album, so I was really amazed. There weren't many reviews there yet, so I just felt I should say something. I ended up messing my review a little, but now I will have it much clearer and deeper, as deserved by this awesome group.
To begin, I must say Ghost's music simply has everything to grasp your attention and simply make you feel their music on your guts. Anything graspable can be found in their music. Groovy music played by skillful musicians blasting excellent lyrics. Such a net of qualities would usually make the music confusing and random-like. However, Ghost has such a cohesion and flawlessness in their music one can even feel inside it.
The album starts with Deus Culpa, an organ playing a very deep melody, an intro that doesn't fail in grasping your interesting. Then, there is an escalation of instruments to their first metal track, Con Clavi Con Dio, followed by 7 tracks of the same kind. In the end, there is a track called Genesis, consisted of many fast arpeggios, escalating and falling all throughout this thrilling track. These tracks communicate, creating a story that opens and closes. However, both for the name of the track and the way it escalates, I suspect there's another thing coming...
The approach this band has to occult themes is also very admirable. Their main inspiration of occultism wasn't either out of the blue nor totally new. Their riffs and lyrics is very near to bands such as Mercyful Fate and Angel Witch, while their licks and atmosphere seems to have something from Blue Öyster Cult and Pentagram. Only classics, simply and solely classics.
I'd say their instrumentation is particularly excellent, oscillating the focused instrument. A good example of this oscillation is the beginning of Con Clavi Con Dio, when a bass intro is followed by very well-played keyboards that lead the other instruments through an insane trip, then followed by the strong vocals made by Pope Emeritus. These instruments sound altogether like some dark orchestra playing metal.
These elements create altogether great music, always with energetic riffing, an awesome rhythm section and smart elements creating the main base, complemented by great vocals. This structure rises til it culminates in their catchy choruses and trippy solos. This whole structure makes their music very memorable.
This is only my analysis of the music itself, but that's not where Ghost's quality's over. This album has a production that's superior the average professionally produced album (which is a lot, considering no one from the staff was renowned for anything), and the band has a very interesting sense of aesthetics, with the amazing "satanist pope" and "nameless ghoul" costumes used by the band. Getting deeper into their image stuff, I'd say I admire their art all over the release (the multicolored vinyls, the cover, the amazing sketches on the booklet, and even the ink on the CD).
The result is unbelievable. I personally think Opus Eponymous is a debut that already sounds like a masterpiece. Bravo.