Beneath The Mask – An Interview with Ghost

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As we sat in the upstairs bar of Manchester’s Academy, the venue which plays host to Grunge legends Alice In Chains and all-star Seattle outfit Walking Papers, Ghost Cult is greeted by a member of rock’s most mysterious and clandestine coven, namely Ghost.

What is so disarming about this interview is instead of a habit-wearing disciple of the dark order; we are greeted by a charming, smiling, diminutive yet handsome gentleman who introduces himself by a human name.

As the interview begins, fans are filing into the venue for a “meet and greet” session with the headliner completely oblivious to GC and our anonymous interviewee.

We have found this is becoming easier,” the man tells us. “Anonymity is not all about wearing masks. If I sat here in my stage attire we would not be able to have this conversation without being bothered.” What unfolded is a revealing account from our nameless member of the unholy clergy.

What is it like touring with acts like Alice In Chains and Walking Papers? They are great classic rock acts, but their show aspect is very stripped down compared to your own. How is it being the most theatrical act on this bill?

We knew both of these bands before we toured together. They are very accommodating and supportive. We were specifically asked for, this was not a tour cobbled together by a record company. We try to play with bands that aren’t very theatrical because we want to be the odd band. It might be fun for punters if we did a package tour with Alice Cooper and King Diamond but that would not be so unique.”

Infestissumam is a much bolder record in some ways than Opus Eponymous in that you added new elements such as choral vocals. We have heard that you needed to record a choir in Los Angeles as when you were originally recording the album in Tennessee you could not find one who would sing the blasphemous lyrics! Is that the case?

Yes that’s correct. Nashville is right in the middle of the “Bible Belt”. Even thought there are practioners who can play instruments, they play music styles that are very housebroken. It was a hassle to find people so we recorded elsewhere. If we had the funds on the first album, we would have used the choir on ‘Con Clavi Con Dio’. That was supposed to have a choir. Much of what you see on the second record is the benefit of being on a bigger label (Spinefarm/Loma Vista) who could give us the funds to do this. That is why the first record had to be done in a more primitive manner.”

 

What are your plans for the next album? Can we expect a more lavish production and more sections that are orchestral or will it be more guitar-based?

The new record we are working on will not be more orchestral because we plan on using more of that on the fourth album. We have it all planned out in terms of concept and theme, we just need to execute these ideas. I think we are clear on what will happen, at least two records ahead from now. We have ideas on changing the appearance and the thematics in order to make it interesting. We have painted ourselves into a corner in a sense that we will reinvent ourselves every time to keep this interesting. Papa will be reinvented each time too. He will evolve alongside our albums.”

a nameless ghoul quote

 

Read the full interview in Ghost Cult Issue #15, later this week!

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Ross Baker