Monday, May 27, 2024

Blue Oyster Cult – Ghost Stories

In recent years, the Blue Oyster Cult (BOC) have joined the ranks of those elite bands who’ve racked up fifty plus years of making albums and playing gigs, and in doing so have created a considerable catalogue of classic rock tunes, becoming iconic in the process. Despite no longer having hit albums, and the fact many of their classic tunes are over forty years old, it’d be fair to say they’re still a considerable force in the rock world, and their impact and influence has been acknowledged by bands like Metallica.

Ghost Stories is a collection of reimagined and newly completed songs spanning 1978-1983, all bar one track, ‘If I Fell,’ from 2016. All the songs were derived from rehearsals, etc, but all recorded in the hope they’d see the light of day at some point. Many of the songs on this album (which has the added bonus of involvement by original band members Joe and Albert Bouchard), have never made it onto any albums previously and those which already have been reimagined for rerelease in 2024 for what, if the runes are to be believed, could well be the finale to the BOC’s illustrious recording career.

Having said this, however, this album doesn’t represent the best of the BOC. While tracks like ‘Soul Jive,’ ‘Gun’ and ‘Shot In The Dark’ are all fairly representative of the BOC, tracks like ‘Cherry’ and ‘The Only Thing‘ are, being honest, quite lame and wouldn’t even come close to consideration for any of the BOC’s major albums. What’s surprising on this release is the paucity of real guitar workouts, with only ‘Don’t Come Running To Me’ featuring any extended guitar workout.

There’s a cover of ‘If I Fell,’ by The Beatles and it’s dreadful .. why a band like BOC touch songs like this I do not know! But they partially redeem themselves with a couple of other covers which have featured on previous ‘live’ albums, such as a credible version of the Animals’ classic ‘We Gotta Get Outa This Place,’ plus a slightly more rocked up version of the MC5’s iconic classic ‘Kick Out The Jams’ ( sadly, writer Wayne Kramer died in February), though both songs sounded better on the Cult’s ‘live’ album Some Enchanted Evening.

Overall, there’s some quite decent music on this album, and with what they’ve contributed down the years. BOC have earned the right to do whatever they want, but I suspect this will be one for BOC completists only.

Laurence Todd
Laurence Todd
Took early retirement after many years as a teacher in order to write books as well as about music. A long-time music obsessive, has wide and eclectic tastes but particularly likes prog rock and rock in general. Enjoys going to gigs and discovering new acts.

Related Articles

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

20 − nineteen =

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

RAMzine is proud to support The Mike James Rock Show!

Latest Articles

In recent years, the Blue Oyster Cult (BOC) have joined the ranks of those elite bands who’ve racked up fifty plus years of making albums and playing gigs, and in doing so have created a considerable catalogue of classic rock tunes, becoming iconic in...Blue Oyster Cult - Ghost Stories