Ghost Conclude ‘Popestar’ Tour With Black Mass in Historic Brooklyn Theater [Review + Photos]
With the final date of their ‘Popestar’ tour at Brooklyn’s historic Kings Theatre, Ghost solidified themselves as one of the greatest live acts of metal's newest generation.
The Swedish collective has flourished by leaps and bounds since their first visit to New York City, performing to just a few hundred at Webster Hall’s smallest room back in 2011. Five years later, Ghost played one of New York’s most magnificent theaters for a sold-out audience of 3000.
We’ve seen Ghost perform at least half a dozen times since Infestissumam propelled the masked sextet into metals forefront, and we can attest that Ghost’s Kings Theatre performance is by far the best we’ve witnessed. First off, the Kings Theatre provided the perfect setting for a Ghost ritual, magnifying the band’s sonic qualities through lush and elegant architecture. The palatial structure, completely lined with golden nuance and red velvet, could provide the perfect setting for an opera or Shakespearean play, but on Nov. 12, a black mass was held.
Opening for Ghost was etherial pop musician Marissa Nadler. The dreamlike feel of Nadler's music proved to be sublime, and though it resembles nothing close to metal, her performance left the crowd feeling blissful in anticipation for the headliners.
The production value of Ghost’s live ritual has increased exponentially through five years of tireless touring. With three acclaimed albums and two EPs under their robes, Ghost have the freedom to craft a dense set filled with their most glorious compositions. Taking a cue from Iron Maiden, Ghost gave followers a night of extended epics like “Ghuleh / Zombie Queen,” “Devil Church / Cirice” and “Secular Haze.” Opening with new fan favorite “Square Hammer” was received especially well, as were trips back to Opus Eponymous with “Con Clavi Con Dio” and “Ritual.”
During "Body and Blood," a pair of Sisters of Sin walked out to hand communion wafers to the audience. Loudwire readers may have recognized one of them as 'Loudwire Nights' host Toni Gonzalez.
The flow of Ghost’s latest stage show was essentially flawless. The band’s precision of weaving one song into another felt truly magical, as did the unexpected pyro that would periodically go off in front of the group’s stained-glass backdrop. The feel of an unholy celebration hit yet another peak as Ghost unleashed cannons of silver confetti into the sky.
Papa Emeritus III’s hyper-sexual stage banter was on-point as always, teaching even the youngsters in attendance about the Satanic implications of the female orgasm. Papa even offered some words of comfort to New Yorkers still reeling from the 2016 election, professing that though the next four years will probably suck, everything is going to be okay.
Though Ghost’s live experience is now one of metal’s most elaborate and expertly crafted, it’s still a long way from what the band wishes to achieve. However, if the trajectory of the past five years is any indication of where Ghost is headed, expect your minds to continually be blown by Sweden’s premier aural Satanists.
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