After the stunning ‘Meliora’ album from 2015, expectations to the Swedish clerical crew GHOST run high. With the EP ‘Popestar’, which is out today, they only in part live up to those expectations.
The EP consists mainly of cover tunes, and only Square Hammer offers new, original material from Papa Emeritus and the ghouls. That song, I have to say, is Ghost as I like it: dynamic progression of the song, the infamous, updated retro sound, warm production, yet with that slightly cold, distanced and eerie edge that Ghost do so well. And it is first and foremost a lesson in rock groove and melody. Very nice.
The rest of the EP consists of cover tunes of rock and pop songs. Echo and the Bunnymen’s Nocturnal Me gets a fine treatment. A lot of dark atmosphere – it suits Ghost well. Simian Mobile Disco’s (never heard of them!) I Believe is also alright, but kind of loses momentum along the way.
Missionary Man, originally recorded by The Eurythmics, on the other hand, falls flat on the face and doesn’t do justice to neither Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart’s highly energetic pop tune, neither to Ghost’s own capabilities. Imperiet’s Bible I don’t know, but this is also below par in a Ghost context. Not very interesting and quite frankly boring.
A mixed output on this short release, and only in part good. Let’s consider it a sort of warm up for the next full-length, shall we?
1. Square Hammer
2. Nocturnal Me (cover version – Echo And The Bunnymen)
3. I Believe (cover version – Simian Mobile Disco)
4. Missionary Man (cover version – The Eurythmics)
5. Bible (cover version – Imperiet)
Release date: 16th of September, 2016