The long awaited Poets of the Fall 9th studio album, Ghostlight, has landed in mailboxes all over the world and on most streaming platforms. I received the CD one day before its release date. The package was rather big as I ordered some extra merch’ 😅. I only unwrapped the CD though and after some struggles to get my CD player working, I poured myself a glass of Pinot Gris – sorry no Beaujolais for me. I put on my jacket, grabbed a blanket and headphones on, I sat on the balcony. I was ready.
Wrapped in my blanket, I pressed play and started to listen as the sun danced with the trees. No phone to distract me, no booklet to focus on, only a sensory experience to live, just me and the music.
Breath-taking intro – Firedancer
A little ambient sound and Marko starts speaking, in a low baritone voice, the words that are going to set the tone for the entire Ghostlight album. A voice we all know so well, which whether speaking or singing cannot be mistaken for any other. A voice that commands undivided attention, speaking words that just now – after hours of listening to the album – recalled memories of other great works and unnamed memories, lost deep within yet present. They aren’t good or bad, they just are…
In the space between thought and wonder
Memory cannot pull you under
It is strange that such four verses are starting the album and immediately put me in some kind of inexplicable trance, for lack of a better word. Of course, the first chords kick in after a few seconds and we all know that this song has to start the shows… seriously, there is no other way 😁.
Out of ten songs, only two are under five minutes and above three. We’re in for a treat!
Ghostlight left me completely stunned like I had just witnessed the birth of new wonder. I starred at the forest, flabbergasted that the music had stopped. I could barely move for a few minutes, numb. I am not exaggerating, this is truly how it was… and still is somehow. Who else better than you could understand what I am talking about? I smiled, shivered, laughed and cried… sometimes all at once. There is something so deep in the music, the voice, the words that it touches me to the core.
I fell in love with Poets of the Fall all over again. I did not want to go to bed because it felt like a sacrilege to stop the music. But I did, and I slept incredibly well for the first time in a very long time. Go figure. I am over enthusiastic again, but I am telling you, Ghostlight made me feel… everything. Like my entire life flashed in front of my eyes with the good, the bad, the forgotten and everything in-between. Surreal!
Now, if you did not understand that I loved the album… well, yeah you’re right I don’t love it. I truly adore Ghostlight 💖. This is the best Poets of the Fall creation, according to me, myself and I. Ghostlight is the pinnacle of Poets of the Fall trilogies.
Grand finale of the trilogy of trilogies
Ghostlight is one of these albums that is dancing between styles and genres, with no obvious catchy tunes or at least not where you’d expect them to stick. It goes against the current of standard format – according to me. It is complex, sophisticated and haunting. I don’t like labels, music should not have labels. Ghostlight is all that Poets of the Fall was, is and will be. Ghostlight is the end of an era… it concludes Marko’s obsession for trilogies 😅 his words, not mine.
Musically accomplished, as for each album, the music shifted to match the part of the trilogy (- ies) that was depicted. It stands to reason that the grand finale of the trilogy of trilogies should sound almost like a defiance to life itself. Epic! It is about being done with the struggles, finally rising as we are, stronger and at peace with who we are. As the phoenix, we rise from the ashes full of hope. This is mainly without digging to deep into the lyrics, but it is how the music made… makes feel.
I am usually holding the booklet as a life vest at this stage, but not this time. Yes I read the lyrics and sang along once or twice, but there is so much more than the lyrics in Ghostlight (even more than on other Poets albums). The orchestration is phenomenal. As Captain mentioned on his Twitter mixed by Jesse Vainio and Lauri Hämäläinen, mastered by Svante Forsbäck. No idea who these geniuses are, but they captured our Poets to perfection. Thank you!
Poets of the Fall is thriving on this album. Incredible to witness! I don’t know how many times I have listened to it yet, but I stopped counting after 10 and it was around 10 o’clock this morning (it is now 19:30 🙃). When you think you have a good grasp on what you’re listening to, a new layer arises and whispers in your ear like a ghost in want of company.
I don’t care about the technical aspects of the music, as you are well-aware by now. Still not versed in it… but, the guitar solos, they let loose on Ghostlight. The solos are powerful and uplifting. They speak to me on different levels, but the one that got me good is the from Lust for Life. Jaska did it again. He has a way of playing, it is like his guitar talks to my soul. I don’t know how he does it.
Calling out to the past
Some melodies are calling out to Poets of the Fall previous work, such as Lust for Life reminds me of little of Signs of Life at times. Would it be an answer to it? Could be, I think. Some verses winking at old songs like “The carnival closed down” in Chasing Echoes (I heard ever so slightly some reminders of the Adele’s cover “Rollin’ in the Deep” the band did a few years back).
I am sure that I could find more, subtle throwbacks, as Marko revealed that for every album, he had to carefully choose the words with the trilogies in mind.
Some track by track
A few select ones, but it is not because I selected them that they are my favourites – Ana 🤣. I need to say something to Marko. When I wrote about Requiem, I did not highlight your voice as I should have. Today, although I believe I did not do you justice then and I apologize, you should confess that you did hold out on us in Requiem. Your singing is flawless as always, but you still held out, big time. Thank you! 😅 This makes Ghostlight so much sweeter indeed.
Sounds of Yesterday
Captain!!! 🥰 Smooth piano… Marko, voice like honey… “Ghost of light”… and I cannot get rid off the chills running on my skin rendering my brain rather dull, not easy to write something that makes sense. Marko’s falsetto here takes hold of my heart telling me, wait I’ve got more to say… stick around, let’s continue the journey together! The story’s not over yet.
Rock on! The guitar riffs are catchy and puts me in the zone.
It cuts so deep that the fool in you is me
Dang! So much to dig in these lyrics, fun! Probably one of the heaviest guitar riffs in Revelations. The lyrics are calling out to Requiem for my Harlequin, I think. This is great rock!
Heroes and Villains
If I say that this song stole my heart, I’d lying because they all did. Falsetto again that reminds my of Morten Harket here. Similar intensity of feelings in the voice… although, Marko brings it to yet another level, with added sensuality, perfect timing (goes without saying), overwhelming emotions guaranteed.
Marko has the gift of an empath in reverse when he sings. He expresses the emotions so well, never over doing it. He out-did himself on Heroes and Villains, or so I thought the first time I listened and had not heard the rest. Can it get any better, yes it can, keep listening!
Weaver of Dreams
This is the song I picked when Tiia asked which song we thought would be our favourite based solely on the title. Weaver of Dreams spoke to me on an almost organic level. I cannot explain it – “Try!” would say Mr Palmer (Hugh Laurie) to his wife, in Sense and Sensibility from 1995. It felt like a friend was telling me about me.
Anyway, 3:24 the instrumental part is out of this world. This is chill, rich and Gorgeous. Jani, your bass keeps me warm and cosy 💖.
Ocean blues out of greys […] Even shadow’s embrace tells me, you will find your beautiful day.
Again, how does he know all this?
Are you alright my love?
What are they trying to do here, give me a heart attack? No, I’m not alright! I don’t want the music to stop and there is only one song left after Hello Cabaret… oh right, “repeat”… Hello Cabaret is intimate and grandiose at the same time.
The soft guitar and the strings are the accompaniment of choice for the way Marko is singing on this song. His falsetto is blurring my vision… and then when the song goes full instrumental, the grandeur gives an unexpected extra depth. When you think that this is it, the guitar solo stops you in your tracks and at about 3:60, Marko pulls the carpet from under your feet and you end up on the floor wondering what has just happened. But you can’t recover because comes the next track…
Beyond the Horizon
This is where I stopped breathing and ended up gaping for air, literally. Awestruck, Beyond the Horizon is THE conclusion. Perfect, flawless, tear jerking at the same time as I am laughing with joy and delight. I still need to pause as I am writing these words. The drums here are so powerful they still resonate in me. It ends with Marko, speaking the last words, not without reminding me a little of Nightwish and their “The Greatest Show on Earth”.
The outro calls out to the start of the album though and in a swift too short 55 minutes and 32 seconds, the circle is closed. Just like that, the epic conclusion is concluded.
Poets of the Falls has always made me feel more than I usually allow myself, and with Ghostlight they pushed even further. I expected greatness and I got grandiose as a bonus. This is Poets of the Fall like I’ve never heard them before, at the top of their form they delivered a masterpiece through and through. What else can I say that I have not already said over and over? Go buy Ghostlight if you haven’t already 🥰.
Now, when Requiem for my Harlequin was released, we fans chatted a bit with the band waiting for the premiere on YouTube. Marko suggested a name for Poets of the Fall community: The Harlequins of Fate. We graduated from Children of the Fall. But now, listening to the end of the album and as one of my fellow fans justly wondered… are we to be Ghostlights?
Food for thoughts… and on that note, I will let you ponder on that. I need to go back to my reverie listening to Ghostlight and let the shivers run their course unhindered.