Copenhell - 2015

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

As the third Swedish band seen in a row for us, Ghost had the unrivalled honour of closing down the main sage section of Copenhell this year. This was quite a move up on their part, considering that only two years prior they had a common daytime slot, on the medium stage.

As had been the case with the clash between Bloodbath and Marduk an hour earlier, Ghost was now up against fellow Swedes in Blues Pills, who played the same time on the Pandæmonium stage, and again I found the combination of bands odd, as I would have thought they would appeal to the same people. Would it not be better to change places on Marduk and Blues Pills? Either way, it was fun for the Swede in me to see four Swedish bands top the day at this Danish festival.

I digress however, and we should move back to the Helvíti stage, and Ghost.
That Ghost deserved this spot in the eyes of the audience was clear, as they had pulled together almost the entire Copenhell crowd for the gig.
They had some new stuff up their sleeve as well – new, and very stylish masks adorned the Nameless Ghouls, and Papa Emeritus III (yes, he upgrades apparently) also displayed a new outfit. They had a new single out, Cirice, and their third album, Meliora, was only a couple of months away.
The performance and sound hadn’t really changed all that much though. It was still a very ‘Seventies sounding rock/metal style with a healthy dash of horror they were going for, and they certainly hit the mark on that. There was only a very limited amount of talking between songs, and mostly it was only song upon song delivery. I would have liked a bit more personality shown, but I guess that’s part of the act with these guys, not showing who they really are, to keep the image intact.

It worked on the audience, which once again came out in droves, to praise Satan in the unholy name of heavy metal.
While the band held mass on the stage, with Papa Emeritus III swinging a ball of incense, and the Nameless Ghouls swinging and posing with their instruments, the Copenhell crowd swayed in accordance with the blasphemous rhythms they were pumping out. For all the people amassed here, there weren’t many voices that stayed silent in the Luciferian choruses that echoed over the old harbour area.
For my part, I could clearly see what this band brings to the altar table, but I have yet to be spellbound by their sound. Thus, especially in light of their chosen lack of audience contact, the show began dragging on after a while, and Copenhell didn’t quite go out with the boom that I was hoping for. Still, they deserve to play after dark. In fact, this is the only right way to see this band.

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