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Ghost's song "Square Hammer" reminds me strongly of the Bangles "Hazy Shade of Winter" (originally by Simon and Garfunkel). What makes them seem so similar, and is this likely to be a deliberate imitation or tribute?

Ghost - Square Hammer

The Bangles - Hazy Shade of Winter

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    It would be helpful to have links to the two songs, particularly ones that start at the point of the riffs you're inquiring about. Also, your question is a subjective one. Consider asking whether anyone knows if the apparent lift was specifically intended. – Aaron Jul 14 at 15:20
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The music of Ghost is full of pop culture sensitivity, so I would not doubt the influence of bands like the Bangles on their sound. However, I think you're just noticing the hard-hitting, on-beat snare and the spooky, organ-like synths common to both songs. The rhythm of the riffs are not the same, nor are the notes or chord progressions. They are two distinct riffs played in similar atmospheres.

Hope this helps!


Ghost - Square Hammer

The Bangles - Hazy Shade of Winter

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There's a definite similarity to the riffs --the instruments are very close, the drums with their on-beat rhythm are nearly identical, and the opening four notes are basically the same. But after that they diverge pretty decisively.

I'm not familiar with Ghost's music, but it doesn't seem out of the question that this song is intended as a tribute to 80s hard rock, or is at least in a retro style that wouldn't have sounded out of place on 80s rock radio.

Given that, I'd say this isn't a direct imitation or a tribute to this particular song, but just a coincidence of genre elements. Riffs often tend to be quite similar, particularly within a given genre.

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I think the Ghost song has a similar intro to the Bangles,but it's just slowed way down. I rarely like chopped or screwed music, not sure if that is still a genre. But it sounds almost like Ghost was going for that vibe but the songs are very similar in my opinion.

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