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Ghost / Dead Soul http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/96/2a/3f/ghost-live-review-83-1459363801.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     March 30, 2016    
 
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Ghost / Dead Soul - Rock City, Nottingham (UK) - 14th December 2015

I was a little surprised when I learned that Ghost were to play Rock City tonight, as the previous three times I had seen them had been at Download, the last time being on Stage 2, and I just thought they might be doing theatres this time out. What surprised me even more was that when we turned up there was no queue, and when we got into the venue there was only a small handful of people in front of the stage. Maybe the rain had kept them in.

First things first, we had support band Dead Soul on. This was a bit strange to me, as there were only three people on stage, two guitarists and a vocalist. No bass and no drums. These sections of music were all on backing tape, which is not really my thing, and when they started the music was a bit "light", while the vocalist was trying very hard to look like Bono from U2. The signs were not good, but as the set progressed the material got better. I am not sure how to describe it, it's Rock, but I'm not sure what sub-genre it would fall under. One song that I did make a note of was 'Home By The Sea,' which was not a Genesis cover, but was melodic and quite powerful. By the end of their set the audience had definitely warmed to them.

Also by this time, the place had filled considerably, creating an undeniable sense of expectation as the "chant" came over the P.A. With their latest album 'Meliora' to promote, I expected to hear quite a few from that, and they kicked off with 'Spirit', quickly followed by 'From The Pinnacle To The Pit', which kind of backed up my suspicions. They then went back to 'Ritual' and 'Con Clavi Con Dio' from their first album 'Opus Eponymous'. These two were the only songs played from that album, the rest coming from 'Infestissumam' and 'Meliora' releases. Papa Emeritus III brought out the incense for 'Per Aspera Ad Inferior', then introduced us to the Sisters Of Sin, who handed out bread and wine to those stood at the front during 'Body And Blood'. Then, something I had not seen before; PEIII removing his mitre and robe (and looking a little bit like the Penguin from the Batman films) for 'Devil Church', the crowd singing along with the chorus. New track 'Cirice' and then 'Year Zero' was followed by 'He Is' and it was at this point that I suddenly thought that PEIII had been much more communicative with the audience than I had ever seen him before, while the rest of the band were more animated. The lighting was also excellent, especially during the latter and I suddenly realised that I had only seen them previously for a maximum of thirty minutes, and now I was seeing them for longer, I thought it was brilliant. The last two songs from 'Meliora' were 'Absolution' and 'Mummy Dust', which is the heaviest song they do and one I didn't particularly like on the album, but live it probably adds something to it. We even saw keyboard nameless ghoul come forward and strut his stuff on a portable keyboard. The last three songs were all from 'Infestissumam', 'Guleh/Zombie Queen', 'If You Have Ghosts' and the encore 'Monstrance Clock' – the meaning of which was explained to us.

This then was probably one of the best gigs I had seen in 2015. A full show, on their own terms, illustrated just what they are capable of. I like a bit of theatrics in my shows, and they definitely have that, and I have to wonder what they would do in an arena setting. Oh yes, and they are doing Download again this year. Wonder where they will be this time.

Andy Brailsford

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