Opeth
Ghost Reveries


4.0
excellent

Review

by Nick Mongiardo CONTRIBUTOR (131 Reviews)
March 30th, 2015 | 199 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Ghost Reveries may not be anything drastically new for the band, but it has everything one could possibly want from an Opeth record.

There came a point in Opeth’s career where their critical acclaim reached a seminal level. Still Life began to push the boundaries for modern progressive music and Blackwater Park further solidified that claim. The band then decided to try something different with creating one of their softest records and one of their most hard hitting records before Ghost Reveries, which earned them even more acclaim and popularity in the process. Therefore, Ghost Reveries was released during the band’s critical peak and even eight albums later, they still managed to deliver. While it does drag quite a bit on some of the longer epics, this record showcased the best of both worlds, with the record providing some fantastic progressive rock ballads and the gritty evilness of the progressive metal epics.

Throwing the listener right into the fray in the first few seconds, Mikael belts out some of his most amazing growls, while at the same time showing off his signature metal riffs that never let up. “Ghost of Perdition” features all of this, but also still takes everything down a notch for a few instances, with the band’s now perfected heavy to slow contrast they’re known for. Make no mistake that this brilliance continues into “The Baying of the Hounds” while really driving home the effective use of Mikael’s growls. Aided by sinister guitar riffs, brooding lyrics and fantastic musicianship all around, he sounds genuinely evil here while delivering the lyric “I hear the baying of the hounds in the distance/I hear them devouring!” They explore more of what made Blackwater Park such a masterpiece with these elements, but Ghost Reveries sees Opeth doing what they do best. Overall, it truly isn't anything new, but that’s quite alright.

While the more grandiose songs surely serve as the centerpieces and bulk of the album, the slower songs also showcase more of Opeth’s tamer expertise. “Atonement” is a superb progressive rock ballad with absolutely ominous guitar work along with Mikael’s exceptional clean vocals and tribal drumming. These types of songs are always a nice change of pace on Opeth’s records so the listener can take a bit of a breather and take it all in. “Hours of Wealth” also happens to be another little piece that shows off more of the memorable positives mentioned here in an even gentler light.

Despite the exemplary nature of this album, there does exist a few problems. As opposed to Still Life and Blackwater Park, where there is not a moment wasted, some of the songs on here do meander quite a bit in some sections. For example, “The Grand Conjuration” is quite the carefully constructed progressive metal epic, but as for keeping the listener’s attention for its entire running time, it fails to keep it. The repetitive guitar riffs and overall vibe of not being nearly as interesting as the first two epics mentioned above really makes the song overstay its welcome. “Ghost of Perdition” also strays for a bit towards the end due to a bit of an excessive length, but the rest of the song easily makes up for that one. All in all, what it really comes down to is that the longer lengths of these tracks aren't nearly as justified in general due to hearing some of this before. However, the sheer power of Opeth’s soul for music and Mikael’s guttural performance can certainly make the listener appreciate songs like “Harlequin Forest.” Length aside, the lovely acoustic sections and stunning musicianship are more than enough.

Much like every single record they’re released before this one, Mikael and co. clearly poured their hearts and souls into this one. They've always been a band that did their own thing, but also wanted to keep their fan’s happiness in mind. Therefore, any fans wanting more of Blackwater Park will surely find more of that in this record. It has everything one could possibly want from an Opeth record and that includes inhuman growls, charismatic musicianship and lush acoustic sections. It draws influences from the band’s seminal masterpieces, but also takes elements for their heaviest record and softest record in between. It’s Opeth attempting to be the best Opeth they can and they for the most part accomplish this goal.



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user ratings (3820)
Chart.
4.2
excellent
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Because why the fuck not? Very sweet record.



Hope you guys enjoy the read!

BigPleb
March 30th 2015


47500 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Love the review Mongi but, having said that, this is a hard 5.

Digging: Every Time I Die - Low Teens

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Haha thanks bro. And I know, your fav band and all that. So. Many. Opeth 5s!

BigPleb
March 30th 2015


47500 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Yeah man, like I said everyone has that 'one' band and Opeth are definitely that band for me.

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yea I hear ya. They're among my favs for sure, but right now PT and Isis are probably my two best ones now.

TalonsOfFire
Staff Reviewer
March 30th 2015


14868 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great review Mongi, agreed on pretty much all accounts.

Digging: Alcest - Kodama

CalculatingInfinity
March 30th 2015


5829 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

One of the 2 Opeth albums I want to buy still, awesome album.

Artuma
March 30th 2015


25687 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

harlequin forest is the best on here bro

Digging: Touche Amore - Stage Four

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

My favorite on here is The Bay of The Hounds by like a mile

InFlamesWeThrash666
March 30th 2015


5011 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Came here just to say: GHOST OF PERDITIOOOON

Digging: Alcest - Kodama

Tunaboy45
March 30th 2015


13306 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I was just listening to this, funny coincidence.

Great review as always Mongi.

Digging: Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds - Skeleton Tree

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks dude, and same. Listening to the album while writing it always helps.

Tunaboy45
March 30th 2015


13306 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Absolutely, sometimes you'll hear something and feel you need to point it out in the review.

CalculatingInfinity
March 30th 2015


5829 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Just the whole run from Ghost to Beneath the Mire is solid gold. Also god damn Hours of Wealth will always be my fav 'calm' track from this band.

EvoHavok
March 30th 2015


5526 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Very nice! This should be the default review, pretty much nails all aspects in a clear manner. Baying of the Hounds is also my fav off it. Grand Conjuration becomes quite repetitive, but it always manages to keep my attention, as I really enjoy that ominous and ritualistic vibe it offers.

Digging: BUCK-TICK - Atom Miraiha No.9

trackbytrackreviews
March 30th 2015


2983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"The band then decided to try something different with creating one of their softest records and one of their most hard hitting records in between Ghost Reveries, which earned them even more acclaim and popularity in the process."



This makes it sound like Deliverance and Damnation were products of side projects or something

Mongi123
Contributing Reviewer
March 30th 2015


17875 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm just saying that they're the two records before it. I changed "in between" to "before" but I'm not saying that.

BigPleb
March 30th 2015


47500 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

The 'beneeeath the deeep miiireeeeee' part in Hounds is so fucking good and beautiful.

Tunaboy45
March 30th 2015


13306 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Cover art for this looks so much better without the band logo.

zaruyache
March 30th 2015


13928 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

GHOST OV PERDITION

LINGERING DEATH

GHOST ON MOTHER'S BED

Digging: Imbaru - Vigias



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