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Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
Ghost - Prequelle

1. Ashes - An ominous building piece opens up Ghost's fourth album. The children singing the classic nursery rhyme are kinda like that thing in A Nightmare On Elm Street where they're jumping rope. It works quite well and the voices are quite sinister for such a youthful choir. Then a heavy riff smacks down upon the listener as things start really moving forward and synths start to build up all before we end just before the really opener sets forth. "Ashes" feels a little artificial in the sense that it's intended to be a sinister intro and is little more than that, but it's also that vibe that makes it works so well. "Infestissumam" is still the best intro, but "Ashes" is pretty damn cool nonetheless. 9/10

2. Rats - A really cool drum intro kicks off the album's first single before a really cool metallic riff comes in, leading straight to a cool verse in turn leading to a cool pre-chorus. I absolutely love how the word "rats" is pronounced here. The rolling of the "r", the sinisterness of it all, it's just awesome. We come through another time and get a longer chorus with some "oh-whoa-oh"s that feel like something straight from a '60s band, repurposed for a new day and age. The pre-chorus comes through and then the song slows down for the beginning of the solo section, which eventually gets faster again before we head into the ending section. The pre-chorus leads to a longer hold-over before we get that awesome chorus again. "They're still coming after you," sings our ghostly narrator before the song changes up into that sped-up version of “Spöksonat" that works as the song's outro. I really can't say enough about this song to give it justice. Literally every single second gives me chills and it's more perfect than perfect. Every time I listen to it it just does something new for me. I never expected to find a song that's better than "Square Hammer" on this album, but "Rats" is in fact that song. 11/10

3. Faith - A cool guitar intro opens up this song before we enter into a heavy, plodding riff that leads to the verse. It's a typical Ghost verse but it works better than its predecessors. The chorus melody is really, really good, and I love the way we get that "aaah!" piece at the end leading to the sinister "faith. is. mine!" Another round through and we get a cool solo before we build down to the bridge, which is the chorus lyrics but performed with deeper vocals. Then the chorus comes back in twice before the guitar intro backs the "faith. is. mine!" piece and closes out the song. Not sure why the intro piece to "See The Light" got stapled to the back of this song, but that's not an issue to dwell on. This song could've been a paint-by-numbers affair, yet this incarnation of Ghost really managed to take the track to the next level. It's fantastic. 10/10

4. See The Light - A build-in from the previous track leads to a calm piano-backed verse that's kind of weird to hear. It feels inspired by the pop ballads of the '80s, but it works decently well. The song gets a bit better with the pre-chorus, as the heavier guitars come in, but it's the chorus where the song actually hits its stride. Forge seems to be calling out his previous bandmates that sued him in 2017 to "drink me, eat me" - or so a lot of people seem to think. Or maybe it has to do with the "body and blood" of Jesus Christ. I like how there are different interpretations open for this song. Another round through and we get a cool synth solo and the chorus comes back for a last hurrah. This song isn't quite as good as the first two, but it works pretty damn well nonetheless. For such a drastic style change from literally everything the band did before, they pull it off. I like it. 9/10

5. Miasma - A building intro that feels like clouds on the horizon comes in in a very synth-laden piece before some cool drumming leads to a guitar/synth piece that serves as the "verse" of the song. The "chorus" piece is even better. The "verse" comes back with guitars more in the forefront than the previous time. After we go through the "chorus" again we enter a really cool piece that feels like an ice spectacle. It's like an ice skating tournament and ballet piece put together and I love it. We get an even better piece after the "chorus" repeat that mixes guitars and synths together quite well. There's a cool solo section that culminates in a friggin' sax solo of all things. It could've easily broken the song completely there and yet it sounds so damn good nonetheless. This would've been a really cool song with lyrics, but it shows the audacity of this album in keeping it completely instrumental, putting all their faith in the music itself over sing-along stuff. And it pays off too, because this song is fantastic. 10/10

6. Dance Macabre - A really nice riff opens up the other single from the album before we break into the thumping, bopping song it is. The verse really feels like a part of a dance song, and the pre-chorus brings that vibe up even more. But holy shit that chorus is the catchiest thing these fuckers have ever done. It took me a while to realize that Forge was actually saying "bewitch you" and not doing some sort of New Yorker pronunciation of "be with you". But I like that dual meaning it gives the song. This is another perfect song, it works both as a poppy love song for the people who like that sort of thing and as a piece of the Black Death narrative this album tells. In both ways they pull this song off really, really well. The best song on here after "Rats" and probably the best Ghost song after "Rats" and "Square Hammer". 10/10

7. Pro Memoria - A cool orchestral piece opens up this song and kinda reminds me of Alestorm's "Sunset on the Golden Age", so bonus points for that. Piano returns for this song in the verse, which is pretty cool. The chorus has cool lyrics but I'm not sure if they're executed as well as they could be. The songs gets a bit heavier in the second round through. There's a cool instrumental section before we come to another verse that subtly calls out the band members that sued Forge and then we go through the chorus before we come to another cool instrumental section. Then it's back to the chorus and finally some nice vocals close out the song. Honestly, this is my pick for the weakest song on the album, but it's a testament to the utter strength of the release as a whole because despite that, it's still a really solid song. Just not quite outstanding enough. 8/10

8. Witch Image - A cool drum intro kicks off this song as the chorus instrumental opens the track. The verse is pretty cool, but the pre-chorus is awesome and the chorus is even better. The Garden of Earthly Delights and Black Death imagery combined together is a genius move on their part. Another round through and we get a cool instrumental section culminating in a nice drum feel that leads us right back into the chorus. This song is pretty short but holy crap is it good. It's another perfect piece of music. 10/10

9. Helvetesfönster - I really like how "European" this instrumental feels. From the opening through it feels like a walk through the forests where all the old fairy tales took place. The instrumentation is masterfully executed, with a cool balance between piano, orchestral stuff, and guitars. Mikael Åkerfeldt's acoustic piece at the ending is really cool too. This song has a lot of atmosphere, a lot of mood to it, and it works really well. Not quite as good as "Miasma" was, but it's another great instrumental. 9/10

10. Life Eternal - Moving on from the tolling bells in the ending of the previous song, we get an emotional Forge open with an emotional chorus piece. This is a really, really beautiful take on accepting death as a natural part of existence. Whether it's a bridge to a new world or merely an eternal slumber, Ghost convince us to appreciate life while you can and then move onto the next chapter without fear, but with peace. Forge sounds fantastic here and the multi-tracked vocals work extremely well. Perfect ending to a nearly perfect album. 10/10

Up to this point, Ghost's albums have been hit-or-miss in some way or other, but Prequelle really is as good as the hype suggests. This new style of theirs is the poppiest stuff yet, but the guitars sound more metallic than ever, and it works really well like that. The album has more highlights than any other Ghost album to this date and is a really, really cool take on the Black Death stitched together with some of our current events. Despite the shitstorm they had in 2017, Ghost came back stronger than ever and with this album proved fully that they had what it takes to be a great band. I love it.

Rating: 96%
 

Number 6

Ancient Mariner
I'm going to listen to the album tonight, but I have a feeling that I already know what songs I'll be voting for. The thing is I don't think I'll be able to choose a seventh one (from what I'm predicting, it's gonna come down to "Cirice" vs. "He Is", and I just can't choose between those).
 

Collin

Chasing Ponce De Leon's Phantoms
I didn't think Prequelle would be so good that it warranted a profile picture change.
 

Diesel 11

As you scream into the web of silence...
I thought you would like it as much as Infesstissumam.
You thought wrong.

So now that I've heard every Ghost song, you knew what was coming... a list.

1. Rats
2. Square Hammer
3. Dance Macabre
4. Infestissumam
5. Life Eternal
6. Witch Image

7. He Is
8. Faith
9. Ritual
10. Miasma
11. Year Zero
12. Cirice
13. From The Pinnacle To The Pit
14. Deus In Absentia

15. See The Light
16. Ashes

17. Elizabeth
18. Helvetesfönster
19. Genesis
20. Spirit
21. Pro Memoria
22. Mummy Dust
23. Spöksonat

24. Jigolo Har Megiddo
25. La Mantra Mori

26. Zenith
27. Absolution
28. Per Aspera Ad Inferi
29. Prime Mover
30. Monstrance Clock
31. Con Clavi Con Dio
32. Depth Of Satan's Eyes
33. Majesty
34. Stand By Him
35. Ghuleh / Zombie Queen
36. Death Knell
37. Devil Church
38. Satan Prayer
39. Body And Blood
40. Secular Haze

41. Deus Culpa
42. Idolatrine

So with this in mind, I'm voting for everything left from Infestissumam + "Absolution" and "Ashes" (because unlike "Infestissumam" it's really little more than an intro, though a damn good one at that). I hate voting for "Jigolo Har Megiddo" but alas.
 

Collin

Chasing Ponce De Leon's Phantoms
you knew what was coming... a list.

1. Rats
2. Square Hammer
3. Dance Macabre
4. Infestissumam
5. Life Eternal
6. Witch Image

7. He Is
8. Faith
9. Ritual
10. Miasma
11. Year Zero
12. Cirice
13. From The Pinnacle To The Pit
14. Deus In Absentia

15. See The Light
16. Ashes

17. Elizabeth
18. Helvetesfönster
19. Genesis
20. Spirit
21. Pro Memoria
22. Mummy Dust
23. Spöksonat

24. Jigolo Har Megiddo
25. La Mantra Mori

26. Zenith
27. Absolution
28. Per Aspera Ad Inferi
29. Prime Mover
30. Monstrance Clock
31. Con Clavi Con Dio
32. Depth Of Satan's Eyes
33. Majesty
34. Stand By Him
35. Ghuleh / Zombie Queen
36. Death Knell
37. Devil Church
38. Satan Prayer
39. Body And Blood
40. Secular Haze

41. Deus Culpa
42. Idolatrine
Oh shit...
 

Wogmidget

Shitpost bot
You thought wrong.

So now that I've heard every Ghost song, you knew what was coming... a list.

1. Rats
2. Square Hammer
3. Dance Macabre
4. Infestissumam
5. Life Eternal
6. Witch Image

7. He Is
8. Faith
9. Ritual
10. Miasma
11. Year Zero
12. Cirice
13. From The Pinnacle To The Pit
14. Deus In Absentia

15. See The Light
16. Ashes

17. Elizabeth
18. Helvetesfönster
19. Genesis
20. Spirit
21. Pro Memoria
22. Mummy Dust
23. Spöksonat

24. Jigolo Har Megiddo
25. La Mantra Mori

26. Zenith
27. Absolution
28. Per Aspera Ad Inferi
29. Prime Mover
30. Monstrance Clock
31. Con Clavi Con Dio
32. Depth Of Satan's Eyes
33. Majesty
34. Stand By Him
35. Ghuleh / Zombie Queen
36. Death Knell
37. Devil Church
38. Satan Prayer
39. Body And Blood
40. Secular Haze

41. Deus Culpa
42. Idolatrine

So with this in mind, I'm voting for everything left from Infestissumam + "Absolution" and "Ashes" (because unlike "Infestissumam" it's really little more than an intro, though a damn good one at that). I hate voting for "Jigolo Har Megiddo" but alas.

73e3x63ek8021.jpg
 

LooseCannon

Enterprise-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Con Clavi Con Dio - probably prototypical early Ghost. 7/10.
Ritual - what Ghost will be come. 9/10.
Elizabeth - it's fine. 6/10.

Per Aspera Ad Inferi - yeah, this is good. 8/10.
Secular Haze - It's kinda slow and I don't think it ever hits a gear that it should. 6/10.
Jigolo Har Megiddo - 7/10, decent but unmemorable.
Ghuleh / Zombie Queen - Wish you could skip the first part. 7/10.
Year Zero - 10/10 one of my favourite Ghost songs.
Monstrance Clock - so much better live. 8/10.

Spirit - great track. 8/10.
From the Pinnacle to the Pit - also very good 8/10.
Cirice - if this isn't Ghost at their best, then Square Hammer is. 10/10.
He Is - 8/10 very good, fun singalong chorus. Much better live.
Mummy Dust - I like this better on the album than live. 7/10.
Absolution - Still a good song 8/10.
Square Hammer - if this isn't Ghost at their best, then Cirice is. 10/10.

Ashes - 6/10, intro.
Rats - 9.5/10, best on the album, too bad it never gets that good again. Top 5 Ghost song.
Faith - 7.5/10, pretty good track, good chorus. Could use a little oomph to get over the hump. Loses half a point for tacking an intro on at the end of the song.
See the Light - poppy, sappy, and kinda bleh. Technically fine. Instrumental is a let down. 6/10.
Miasma - Overproduced and under developed. Same basic music looped on different instruments. It's elevator music for the first half, then kicks up a notch which barely gets it to 6/10.
Dance Macabre - Designed for radio play. Still a catchy as fuck track and a solid entry in the Ghost canon. Sad they had to hire famous Swedish pop writers to make a second song on Prequelle that isn't utterly forgettable. 8/10, loses a point for not being written by the band.
Pro Memoria - A nice throwback to some more classic Ghost, but it definitely has pop compromises on it. Much better live. 7/10.
Witch Image - Starts promising, ends up in the same pop-rock sound. Not memorable. 6/10.
Helvetesfönster - First half is a revised Witch Image, but way lamer. Second half has nothing interesting in it. Miasma was more interesting. 3/10 utter garbage.
Life Eternal - It's not bad, I wish it was, you know, heavy. And it has the same problem as Dance Macabre in being written by a famous Swedish pop artist. Still, it's nice. 6/10.

The album isn't a step back - it's a step sideways into a far more poppy sound. If that's what you like, great. Me? Give me some heavy fucking metal - this isn't quite heavy metal anymore.
 

LooseCannon

Enterprise-class aircraft carrier
Staff member
Voting for:

Secular Haze
Ashes
See the Light
Miasma
Witch Image
Helvetesfönster
Life Eternal
 

Number 6

Ancient Mariner
"Per Aspera Ad Inferi"
"Jigolo Har Meggido"
"Ghuleh / Zombie Queen"
"Monstrance Clock"

"Spirit"
"From the Pinnacle to the Pit"

"See the Light"

Turns out I didn't have to choose between "Cirice" and "He Is" after "See the Light" came along. I feel like it might grow on me with future listens, but for now it's just not that great.

Overall, though, I think this might be Ghost's best era yet. This doesn't necessarily mean Prequelle is better than Meliora (I still haven't made up my mind about which of the two I like more), however, regardless of my personal views on the album, it's more than clear that this is the band's most cohesive album so far. With Prequelle, they jumped headfirst into the type of sound that clearly suits them best, hints of which have been appearing all across the previous albums (e.g. "Ritual", "Square Hammer") and is finally fully fleshed out here.

I hope they keep going down this route with future releases.
 
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