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Ghost – Popestar


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Depending on who you ask, Ghost’s new EP is either a gorgeous piece of baroque pop metal or a bloated, kitsch monstrosity that is only worthy of the Eurovision song contest. There is precious little room for the middle ground here. While the metal community either loves or loathes them, the rest of the world is slowly being won over by their sheer nerve and irresistible hooks. OK, there are also those who are offended by the band’s sweetly barbed, overtly satanic aesthetic, but these people are idiots, so fuck them.

In any case, Popestar continues their habit of releasing EPs full of covers in between albums and it’s an absurdly catchy proposition. Square Hammer, the only original song, would make Bon Jovi blush with its’ enormous, sugar- coated stadium chorus. It’s exactly the kind of thing that metal purists despise, but it’s so much fun that no one in their right mind would resist.

Everything else is covers and it leans towards the 80s new wave end of the spectrum, with versions ranging from the adequate (the Eurythmics’ Missionary Man, Echo & the Bunnymen’s Nocturnal Me), to the excellent (their version of Simian Mobile Disco’s I Believe is a blasphemous jewel). And then, there is their cover of Bible, originally by Swedish rockers Imperiet, and there is no way of being subtle about this: It’s fucking stunning. Probably the most preposterously overblown power ballad since Cher rode that warship canon. Maybe Sweden should send them to Eurovision after all. They’d probably win.

(-Dimitrios Kontogiannis-)

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