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A Vast Improvement - 93%

winterforest666, July 17th, 2016

I was skeptical about even trying this album at first because I had been disappointed with much of Ghost's previous work such as Infestissumam and If You Have Ghost. I felt that they were hollow, void of feeling and generally uninteresting. Long story short I had low expectations. However, I then turned on the amazing track "Cirice" and instantly fell in love with the album. It's psychedelic, ritualistic, heartfelt, creepy, transportational and maybe even relaxing in a way that only a truly creative metal album can be. The song "Majesty" felt very ritualistic, like something you would listen to while summoning a demon or even the devil himself. "Cirice" was my favorite, the vocal harmonies are gripping, beautiful and the guitar riffs really add to the atmosphere of the song.

"Meliora" also has a lot to offer musically. The guitars provide low, chuggy, sparse riffs during verses then build to majestic, full chords for choruses and pre-choruses. This adds contrast between loud and soft points in the songs which I value as a listener. The drums are really interesting. They're complex enough to be interesting but also simple enough not to pull attention away from the rest of the band. The bass provides a solid foundation and adds to the overall tone of the album. "From The Pinnacle To The Pit" has an awesome bass intro that compliments the song nicely. Papa Emeritus III's vocals are clearly the focus of the album. They're fairly high pitched but in the best way. The singing sounds natural and as though it comes easily to him. Perhaps the most impressive aspect of "Meliora" musically is the keyboard/synths. Often times when a band adds a synth to their mix, it becomes very overbearing and pulls all attention towards itself. "Meliora" is a remarkable exception to this norm. The synth adds to the atmosphere and takes nothing away from the album.

I would recommend "Meliora" to anybody who is interested in bands like King Diamond, Judas Priest, or Iron Maiden. I don't like to think too much about genres but I found that this album reaches out to many fans of metal music by incorporating elements of many different genres of metal into the songs, such as psychedelic rock, doom metal, heavy metal etc.

Ghost's "Meliora" is very much worth listening to and is a big step forward for the band. I'm excited to see what else the band has to offer in the future.