Gröna Lund in Stockholm is one of the largest amusement parks in the North, and also an incredibly fantastic location for concerts. Over the last three years Gröna Lund has hosted a lot of metal events, such as Sabaton, Alice Cooper, Slayer, In Flames, King Diamond, just to name a few. And now Ghost, Swedish heavy metal/rock band formed in 2008 that has gained an increasing renown in the last few years and the status of a big band. The concert is scheduled on September 26, 2014 8:00 pm and it will be the last event of this season at Gröna Lund.
When I arrive there, the concert area is not completely filled yet; I notice at once that most of the audience consists of teenagers, some of whom are wearing costumes with face-paintings or masks that try to desperately imitate Ghost. But let's get back to the point.
The concert begins at 8:00 pm on the dot. The stage setting is very simple and only consists of a background depicting three aisles of a Gothic cathedral. The atmosphere heats up immediately when the anchorman comes onto the stage and kicks off the show. When the anchorman leaves, the lights go down and the intro begins: it is the notes of a music from Stanley Kubrick's last film Eyes Wide Shut. I do not know why, but when I listen to this intro, waiting for the band to come onto the stage, I understand from where the band has drawn inspiration for the masks of the Nameless Ghouls. And then Ghost arrive onto the stage and it is a delirium. Their first song is, as you can expect, “Infestissumam”, and then “Per Aspera ad Inferi” and “Ritual”. The area of the concert is now totally filled with people, and there are not only metalheads, but also families and “not metal” people whom you do not usually see at a metal concert: they are there probably for the roundabouts but they are joining the more usual metal fans, which is nice and remarkable especially if we consider the strongly provocative iconography used by the band. The concert goes on while all around you also see people riding the roundabouts. It is a unique atmosphere, but this can happen only here and in a few other places in the world. The contrast between the hellish atmosphere on the stage and the joy of the roundabouts around is awful.
The performance of Ghost is perfect from all points of view: the guys are technically impeccable, the sound is perfect, and the stage impact is impressive. All of the Nameless Ghouls know exactly what to do, and sometimes it seems that they move around in a synchronized way. Papa Emeritus (under whose disguise Tobias Forge is hiding) does not do much to entertain the audience, but when he does he is really fun especially because of his gestures and his mimicking an old prelate’s typical way of speaking.
The band performs a rich setlist of seventeen songs, two of which are covers and two are encores; one of the covers is The Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun” from the Japanese edition of Opus Eponymous. The show lasts about an hour and a half and ends at about 9:30 pm.
It was an awesome concert even if I still think that Ghost is too much image.
See below the gallery and the video of “Body and Blood”.
1 Infestissumam (from Infestissumam)
2 Per Aspera ad Underworld (from Infestissumam)
3 Ritual (from Opus Eponymous)
4 Prime Mover (from Opus Eponymous)
5 Secular Haze (from Infestissumam)
6 Satan Prayer (from Opus Eponymous)
7 Con Clavi Con Dio (from Opus Eponymous)
8 Elizabeth (from Opus Eponymous)
9 Body and Blood (from Infestissumam)
10 Death Knell (from Opus Eponymous)
11 Here Comes the Sun (The Beatles cover) (from Opus Eponymous Japanese edition)
12 Stand by Him (from Opus Eponymous)
13 Genesis (from Opus Eponymous)
14 Year Zero (from Infestissumam)
15 If You Have Ghosts (Roky Erickson cover) (from If You Have Ghost)
16 Ghuleh / Zombie Queen (from Infestissumam)
17 Monstrance Clock (from Infestissumam)
Papa Emeritus II - Vocals
Nameless Ghoul - Bass
Nameless Ghoul - Drums
Nameless Ghoul - Guitars
Nameless Ghoul - Guitars
Nameless Ghoul - Keyboards
Text, photos and video by Herjann