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Ghost-Meliora - 98%

enshrinedtemple, September 4th, 2015

Ghost returns with their brand of catchy, rock and metal influenced music in their new album Meliora. Ghost took a less is more approach featuring eight well crafted songs and two delicate instrumentals. Andy Wallace is the producer for this album and he captured the essence of their first two albums and put everything together into one neat package. We have the scary and demonic lyrics. We have the pop choruses that easily get stuck in your brain. Heavy riffs and dramatic mellow songs give Meliora great balance. Everything from prog rock to doom metal is captured here.

Ghost are not retreading ground here with this album and they did outshine their previous releases with Meliora. The mysterious nameless ghouls are competent musicians. The guitarists can shell out the heavy menacing riffs but can also incorporate a unique folk style acoustic riff. The bass player does his job well and the intro to “from the pinnacle to the pit” is monstrous. Finally, the keyboard player shines on the very beginning of the album opener spirit. Throughout the album he adds a unique layer to each song without sounding like a cheesy 80’s band. The nameless ghouls craft the songs and ensure that Papa is able to spread his satanic and majestic diversity all over Meliora.

Papa Emeritus III adds to each track with his genre hopping mayhem. “He Is” is the album's ballad and Papa shines with his soothing and blissful vocals. There are many sinister and beautiful moments which gives the album a delightful light and shade element. Every track is one stellar performance after another in the vocal department and papa fits every mood like a glove.

Infestissumam was a stylish and beautiful album that showed what ghost were capable of.Opus was all hard hitting metal but not quite grandiose in the style department. Meliora takes the positives from each and slams them together creating a beautiful monster. This is important because it shows the progression of the band into new territories. The band expands their sound outside the metal realm quite a bit. Meliora’s concept was designed to be dramatic with many twists and turns. It is clear they catered to and perfected many moods.

Some may complain about the length of the album, but it really does its job quickly and effectively. This reminds me of an old classic Master of Reality by Black Sabbath. The light and shade effect that Sabbath used is comparable to that of Meliora. Ghost is one of those bands that is transcending their label of a rock or metal band as their strive for a higher success. I fully expect ghost to trudge on and create even more diverse music as they continue their formula. To me the theatrics and the old school magic of Ghost will not get old anytime soon. One of the most memorable and imaginative albums of 2015 certainly goes to Ghost. While I'm not ready to call this their magnum opus or peak of creativeness, I do think Meliora will be one of Ghost's most critically acclaimed albums when their career is over.