Ghost are counting down on their Monstrance Clock
It’s pretty amazing to look at how far Ghost (now Ghost B.C. for our North American friends!) have come in the three years since their debut album release, Opus Eponymous. I remember very clearly the day that this random album turned up in our inbox at The Number Of The Blog, and how no-one had ever heard of it. Surprisingly, it blew everyone away and brought back a style of metal many believed had long since died out, the classic Black Sabbath vibe, but surprisingly still fresh. They made occult metal that was heavy, catchy as hell and ridiculously over the top, implementing some ludicrous synths and overly satanic, tongue in cheek lyrical content. If you’ve never seen them live, it’s a true sight to see a venue packed out all swaying side to side singing about praising Lucifer.
This year, Ghost released their sophomore album, Infestissunam to some divisive reviews. The Satan worshippers made certain shifts to their sound that abandoned the heavy old school riffing of old and eschewed a more psychedelic vibe that was received well by some, but proved divisive for some of their audience. Initially I was not a fan of this new direction as I felt it was softening their sound as a form of pandering, however on repeated listens the record reveals itself to be a rather intelligent and pleasurable listen, despite the unspellable nature of the album title.
“Monstrance Clock” is one of the latter songs from Infestissunam and is a relatively chilled out number. While it’s disappointing that it doesn’t have a great central riff like some of their earlier material it’s a surprisingly catchy and memorable effort. Ghost are renowned for their amazing live shows, so making a live video for a song is an obvious play to their strengths. One can’t help but feel though that the satanic lyrical content just wasn’t as sharp on this second album, feeling a lot more forced than the first time around.
Despite how you feel, Papa Emeritus is always an absolute joy to watch.