Blue Oyster Cult - Ghost Stories / Frontiers SRL (2024)

Blue Öyster Cult – Ghost Stories (Album Review)

Blue Oyster Cult 2024

Originally released in 1976, Blue Öyster Cult’s “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” has sustained itself as one of the most iconic Rock songs ever. A band originating out on Long Island, New York, BÖC are easily recognizable by their Psychedelic, Heavy Metal signature sound that unquestionably has influenced many. Taking stages by storm and exerting a powerful impact on the soul of Rock-n-Roll, they are celebrating their 50th anniversary with a new, yet unique album entitled Ghost Stories.

Due out on April 12, 2024 through Frontiers Music Srl, this amazing collection of ethereal tunes is a compilation of songs that were originally recorded from 1978-1983; except for “If I Fell,” which was recorded in 2016. A treat for fans, as the cherry on top, one of the tracks included here is their concert performing favorite, the MC5 cover ”Kick Out the Jams.”  Dusted off from the recesses of the closet, BÖC unlocked a treasure chest chock full of lost songs that were hidden from the light of day. That is, until one day they had an epiphany moment and decided to chisel away at these forgotten ores and see if they had the potential to become stunning masterpieces. Now the real question is… was it all worth it?

Answering that with a resounding yes, this look back at the past works like a charm. Made possible to present in high quality due to technology, the songs were transferred to digital audio, taken apart and remixed with the assistance of Steve Schenck (long time band collaborator) and Richie Castellano (engineer and current member of the band). Additionally, the studio work for the album was completed by Castellano, along with remaining original members Eric Bloom and Donald “Buck Dharma” Roeser. Also, if you were wondering, both Albert Bouchard and Rick Downey appear on drums with additional overdubs recorded by Joe Bouchard. If this was not all, George Geranios (original Blue Öyster Cult audio engineer) produced the tracks along with the band themselves. 

All of this in mind, the album is made up of pieces that were initially recorded during rehearsals or working out song ideas/concepts years ago. Fortunately the stars have aligned and with it you get 12 tracks of studio recording gold. Looking at it deeper, there are tracks like the bluesy “Late Night Street Fight” which is catchy and gives you an adrenaline rush. This is while others, like, “So Supernatural,” have a slow pace matched with some sound distortion and vocals that give off an eerie vibe. The intertwining of instrumental notes makes you snap to attention. 

Keeping you engaged, it is not surprising that “So Supernatural” is followed by a remastered “We Gotta Get Out of This Place.” Giving you a version that is not so heavy on the instruments as it is on vocals, it is definitely a must listen. Then there is “Cherry,” a kickass Rock anthem that has unbridled high energy and danceability, “Kick Out the Jams” and “If I Fell,” which are both enjoyable pieces that will appeal to new and old fans.

Overall, the otherworldly Blue Öyster Cult have performed a supernatural feat. A reanimation ritual if you will, they have successfully resurrected the ephemeral souls of lost songs. Now celebrating 50 long years established, they demonstrate that you are never too old to rock, and remind you to never throw anything out… because you just never know when it can come in handy. That is why Cryptic Rock gives Ghost Stories 5 out of 5 stars.

Blue Oyster Cult Ghost Stories
Blue Öyster Cult – Ghost Stories / Frontiers SRL (2024)

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