If you're unfamiliar with the band Ghost (known as Ghost B.C. in the United States), then you may be unaware that no-one really knows who they actually are beneath their hooded robes. Their music take elements from both traditional Heavy Metal and occasionally veers into Doom Metal, but they do have an extraordinary musical talent and there songs are very listenable indeed.
Their current album, 'Infestissumam' (Latin for hostile), was released to rave reviews earlier this year and to tie in with the band's world tour to support it, they have recently released the 'If You Have Ghost' EP - produced and recorded by Dave Grohl - containing cover versions of four songs and one original track.
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Title track 'If You Have Ghosts' is a cover of a song written Roky Erickson, a pioneer of the psychedelic rock genre, back in 1981) and is a great way to kick off the EP. The music has an upbeat quality to is and the vocals are very well performed - there's (strangely) something of a (REM vocalist) Michael Stipe sound to the vocals but that doesn't take away from what a great song this actually is. There is a well executed guitar solo towards the end too, which adds an extra rock element to the track.
The second track is 'I'm A Marionette' from Swedish pop stars ABBA and originally appeared on their 1977 opus, 'ABBA - The Album'. Although markedly different from the original version - the Ghost version is just great. The keyboards here have a doomy quality that was lacking in the original version and when mixed with some heavier guitar sounds, it just gives this new version a more menacing sound.
'Crucified' is a 1991 dance track recorded by the Swedish band Army of Lovers, and what Ghost do here is to completely change the style of the song. A lovely piece of acoustic guitar and harmony vocals at the start belie the fact that the heavier portion of the song is just around the corner. The vocals here are again excellently performed both by vocalist Papa Emeritus II and with added harmony vocals from the rest of the Ghouls, this song is far superior to the original version.
The final cover version featured here is 'Waiting For The Night' by Depeche Mode which was featured on their from their 1990 album 'Violator'. The Ghost version of this track is a solid rendition with the drums and keyboards in particular being to the fore in the mix. The long instrumental section in the middle has an almost Pink Floyd (think 'The Wall' album) feel to it also but this doesn't take anything away from what is ultimately a really good song.
The final track on this EP is a version of the original track 'Secular Haz' recorded live at the Music Hall of Williamsburg in New York and the original version of the track can be found on their current album 'Infestissumam'. Listening to the tracks they chose you have to wonder how and why the band picked these tracks but it's safe to say that these are all very different but very good cover versions of songs that you might never have discovered.
The 'If You Have Ghost' EP will be available on CD, 12-inch vinyl and digitally from all the usual vendors.
If You Have Ghosts (Roky Erickson cover)
I'm A Marionette (ABBA cover)
Crucified (Army of Lovers cover)
Waiting For The Night (Depeche Mode cover)
Secular Haze (live at Music Hall Of Williamsburg In Brooklyn, NY)
You can hear the track 'If You Have Ghosts' here:
You can catch Ghost live here:
Wednesday 20th November - Markthalle, Hamburg
Friday 22nd November - C-Club, Berlin
Saturday 23rd November - Backstage Werk, Munich
Sunday 24th November - Stollwerck, Cologne
Monday 25th November - Mejeriet, Lund
Tuesday 26th November - Trädgårn, Gothenburg
Thursday 28th November - Rockefeller, Oslo
Friday 29th November - Folken, Stavanger
Saturday 30th November - USF Verftet, Bergen
Monday 2nd December - Byscenen, Trondheim
Wednesday 4th December - Gasklockorna, Gavle
Thursday 5th December - Club 700, Orebro
Saturday 7th December - Flygel, Norrkoping
Sunday 8th December - Münchenbryggeriet, Stockholm
Monday 9th December - Idunteatern, UMEA
Wednesday 11th December - Club Teatria, Oulu
Thursday 12th December - Pakkahuone, Tampere
Friday 13th December - The Circus, Helsinki
Friday 17th January - Big Day Out @ Western Springs, Auckland
Sunday 19th January - Big Day Out @ Matricon Stadium, Gold Coast
Friday 24th January - Big Day Out @ Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne
Sunday 26th January - Big Day Out @ Sydney Showgrounds, Sydney
Monday 27th January - Big Day Out @ Sydney Showgrounds, Sydney
Friday 31st January - Big Day Out @ Bonython Park, Adelaide
Sunday 2nd February - Big Day Out @ Claremont Showgrounds, Perth