Live Review: Ghost – First Direct Arena, Leeds [November 23, 2019]

Theatrical rock is back, and is on a trajectory to being bigger than ever! This show marks the biggest venues Ghost have been to on a UK tour, and the […]

Theatrical rock is back, and is on a trajectory to being bigger than ever! This show marks the biggest venues Ghost have been to on a UK tour, and the incredible staging and onstage theatrics have scaled up with the band to justify this. Like a modern love letter to bands like kiss and Black Sabbath, a Ghost concert takes you through melodic masterpieces, dark worship and fist pumping anthems all in the span of one concert.

Cardinal Copia is the ringmaster of the proceedings this evening, a different take on the previous character, Papa Emeritus. The Cardinal is fun, looking like Vincent Price whilst performing somewhere between the hip shaking of Barry Manilow and vocal intensity of Meat Loaf. We also get a cameo from Papa during the concert who came out to play the saxophone.

The production is sharp, and lead singer Tobias Forge knows exactly when to be onstage as the front man you can’t take your eyes off to stepping backstage to let the band shine.

Although each of the band wear the same horned mask and are dressed identically, they are given time to show their musical skills. Each of the members have a personality and by the end of the concert, you can identify them individually through their character and craftsmanship.

Ghost now have a rich back catalogue, and use it to its fullest from their debut Opus Eponymous to their newest EP Seven Inches of Satanic Panic, it’s a setlist which shows the breath of Ghost’s work, and in particular Tobias Forge’s vocal range.

Ghost are not just a band you deserve to see live, but a band that demands to be seen.

Anthony Neylon

About Anthony Neylon

Writer.