This is a full review of the 13th album of My Dying Bride under the name Ghost Of Orion. You will read my opinion on the album and I will show you pictures of the vinyl record I bought for my record collection.
At the end of the review you can watch the video I have uploaded to Vinylom’s YouTube channel along with other interesting videos. Enjoy!
My Dying Bride were founded in Bradford back in 1990. In 1992 they released their first album titled As the Flower Withers.
Since then, it’s been 28 years and 13 great albums. My Dying Bride is an iconic band for the doom metal genre.
The use of violin in their compositions is their trademark sound and their music has something special that the fans of the band seem to enjoy. A mix of despair, melancholy, pain, and loss.
The outcome is exceptional and paints a vivid picture of the tone the band wanted to give to the world. The great production keeps the quality of the album very high.
Ghost of Orion was released in May 2020 with the band having to face a lot of challenges and difficulties in the process. A lot of members left the band and the founding member and lead singer Aaron Stainthorpe has to face one of the most serious issues that a parent would ever have to face.
His 5-year-old daughter was diagnosed with cancer in 2017. After a lot of psychological struggle everything turned out OK and Stainthorpe came back one year and a half later expressing through his lyrics all this tension and all the thoughts that this event caused.
Andrew Craighan, the guitarist of the band wrote alone the whole album and in 2018 Stainthorp started writing the lyrics and being part in the whole process. In 2020 the album was released to the world.
It may not be their most commercial album but it sure is the one being created under the most difficult circumstances and its tone, for which we will talk about soon, was caused by specific reasons.
The Cover – Artwork
The cover was a design by Eliran Kantor. Eliran Kantor is a Berlin-based artist and illustrator known mostly for creating album covers for metal bands such as Atheist, Iced Earth, Mekong Delta, Sodom, Testament and more.
In an interview, he said that Aaron Stainthorp gave him the lyrics and the album title and he trusted him to present with his design something symbolic that would fit not only the title but the overall undertones of all the lyrics.
Kantor’s idea was to present the symbolism of the obsession with loss and one’s unwillingness to face the death of a loved one. The outcome is one of My Dying Brides’s finest covers.
Versions on vinyl
Ghost of Orion was released in 2020 in 8 different versions of vinyl, 3 of which were American and 5 European. The version I’m going to unwrap is the European Edition with 2 white vinyl records.
The songs (Review)
The album has 8 songs and its’ duration is 56 minutes. It’s 100% doom metal with some progressive touches. There are no outbursts in this album.
Everything is moving in a slow and steady tempo. Even though it comes from a place of deep sadness, Ghost of Orion isn’t a depressing album. It’s an album that celebrates the ascendance of life against sickness .
Some songs are easier to digest even from the first listen like the first three songs of the record. Broken Shore, Outlive the Gods and of course Tired of Tears, wherein its’ end Stainthorp sings the lyrics ” Lay not thy hand upon Lay no hand on my daughter”, a very powerful moment emotionally, especially if you are a parent. It is without a doubt the most intense moment of the album emotionally.
The, ten minutes long, The Long Black Island is my favorite cut on the album. Especially the second half of the song, I believe is the highlight of the record. Dark, intense, and commanding.
The Old Earth is a song with a remarkable intro and various vicissitudes. It’s the second to last song before the album ends with the instrumental “Your woven shore”.
Ghost of Orion includes two remarkable interludes. “The Solace”, with beautiful guitars and female vocals and “The Ghost of Orion” a very intense and atmospheric cut. One must listen to it two or three times to successfully enter their world.
The making of the album seems to be calculated and cautious. It’s not a record made in a hurry but a musical act, a theatrical piece. Although the steady slow, and for some boring, tempo My Dying Bride manage to keep the interest in.
Which songs should I listen to first
If someone asked me which songs to listen to first, I would suggest three: Το Broken Shore, το Tired of tears και το the long black land
Having listened to the Ghost of Orion over 20 times I give you my rating for each song and in the end the overall rating of the album.
My Rating for each song
- Your Broken Shore 8/10
- To Outlive The Gods 8/10
- Tired Of Tears 9/10
- The Solace 7/10
- The Long Black Land 8/10
- The Ghost Of Orion 7/10
- The Old Earth 8/10
- Your Woven Shore 7/10
There may be disagreements about the ratings and I would love to read comments with your ratings on the songs of the album, along with your rating for the entire album.
Ghost of Orion that one must listen front to back to fully understand and feel what MDB are trying to say.
My Dying Brides – Ghost of Orion rating
8 / 10
My Dying Bride’s “The Ghost of Orion” is a special record. It was created with blood sweat and tears and it was quite challenging for the members of the band.
When push comes to shove, you have to show what you’re made of and the British band overcame the difficulties and pain and came back with a great record, a record that may never be their most popular cut, but looking at their entire rich and important discography will always be the most unique and the one having a very painful story.