The Scandinavian dark lord Cardinal Copia, held service and closed down the main stage on Saturday at this years Copenhell, with a gem infested pope and a saxophone solo that killed.

What else can you expect?

You might be thinking what the hell is going on here?… but this is kinda what you can expect from a band like Ghost. Masked, unnamed “Ghouls” playing instruments in a theatrical setup, musically leaning towards classic rock like Kiss, Alice Cooper, and a stage decoration that would make even King Diamond jealous. With the bombastic and charismatic Tobias Forge aka. Cardinal Copia in front of the wheel, we are in for a ride. Ghost packed the main stage, alot of people were there simply to see, what all the fuss was about. Musically Ghost is leaning more towards Roxette than Rammstein, with pop song structure and classic hooklines, they appeal to a large segment but separates the true metal purists from the masses.

The radio and album relevant band played songs like “Rats”, “Cirice” and the radio friendly “Dance Macabre” from their newly released “Prequelle” album. A couple of songs from their third album “Meliora” made its way to the setlist. However no songs were played from their Grammis nominated (Not to be confused with the better known Grammy award) first album “Opus Eponymous” and only one song “Monstrance Clock” were played from their second album. You might think this is odd, but when you look at Ghost´s catalogue of leadsingers, you will find that the leadsinger has been shifting quite a bit. This is one more Ghost gimmick, Tobias buried his old front figure Papa Emeritus (God rest his soul), before the newly released album came. “Previous” lead singers are:
Papa Emeritus – vocals (2008–2012)
Papa Emeritus II – vocals (2012–2015)
Papa Emeritus III – vocals (2015–2017)
Cardinal Copia – vocals (2018–present)

Ghost performed the set well, with alot of room to take in the whole scenery. And just as when you start to think that you have seen it all, you are taken by surprise. I mean really by surprise, when a gem infested pope playing a mean sax solo slams it on stage you have seen it all. The show was entertaining and some what amusing, Ghost didn´t really reach to the top of their full potential, they never really seemed to peak. They didn´t convince the audience fully. Maybe the timing of the performance was off, but the audience seemed tired and uninterested in interacting with the band.

The Ghost concept universe works. Don´t be fooled by the makeup and masks, these guys are definately good at what they do. As a whole they have it all. They are great composers and experienced musicians and it sometimes sounded so tight, that I thourght it was playback. Let me just emphasize, it was NOT playback!. With the always changing, charismatic Tobias Forge in front, he led the audience through a dark metal cabaret show but he forgot to show them out with maners, as a true gentleman.

Ghost Setlist, Copenhell 2018:

– Ashes
– Rats
– Absolution
– Ritual
– From the Pinnacle to the Pit
– Faith
– Devil Church
– Cirice
– Miasma (Papa Nihil on saxophone)
– Year Zero
– Spöksonat
– He Is
– Mummy Dust
– If You Have Ghosts (Roky Erickson cover)
– Dance Macabre
– Square Hammer

– Monstrance Clock