How’s it hanging, Butcher Crew?! Ya girl, The Saw, sometimes feels mellow and mild while running The Butcher Shop. And in those times, the Swedish band, Ghost, is the go-to of choice for The Saw. Ghost have just released a new single, “Call Me Little Sunshine,” off of their upcoming fifth studio album, Impera, due to drop on March 11, 2022.
What is Ghost?
Now, Ghost, is a fascinating enigma. The musical components are Hard Rock/Metal in content. The vocal style is a flat (yet excellent) Rock-N-Roll/Pop style and pattern. But the concepts – the theatrical imagery – is VERY dark and anti-Christian. Likewise, the lyrical material, while benign in its delivery, is laced with haunting contexts and brutal intents. Ghost is a welcome sucker-punch to the In-Your-Face movement of modern music.
The Saw is very cerebral. I like nicely defined categories; order, systems, and schedules. Ghost is a challenge to the way my mind works because their imagery does not align with their sound! Ghost utilizes all the mythology of Black Metal and traditional Swedish culture, to an extreme, almost hyperbolic level; while sounding very much unlike the modern expressions of that sub-culture. The audible delivery is… innocent. While the visual imagery and lyrical content are horrifyingly threatening. So, on one hand, I love it! But on the other hand, I exclaim, ‘What the Hell is going on?!”
Ghost have enjoyed commercial success in the recent years, precisely because of their sound. They are three-time Grammis Award winning (Swedish award), three-time nominated (winning once) Grammy Award winning, 18-time nominated (three-time winner) Loudwire Music Award nominees, Metal Hammer Golden Gods Award winning, and P3 Guild Award winning.
The music is catchy, with some great hooks. Their visual theatrics is what’s controversial to the mainstream masses, it shines a light on exactly what frightens humanity. And if you pay attention to the message – the lyrics, with their various nuances – Ghost are clearly sowing a contrary worldview in human flesh.
Who is Ghost?
For all intents and purposes, I think legally and otherwise, Ghost is Tobias Forge (ex-Repugnant). The rest of the band, for most of its career, have been ‘Nameless Ghouls’. There have been many member changes and replacements of the ‘Nameless Ghouls’ over the years, and even Forge has evolved his character in the band as the ghastly narrative of Ghost progresses.
There have been several iterations by Forge, of ‘Papa Emeritus’ (I, II, and III), the Anti-Pope, along with storylines that narrate the removal of one ‘Pope’ for another. In 2018, Forge introduced a new leading character in the Ghost saga, ‘Cardinal Copia’. Also in 2018, the five ‘Nameless Ghouls’ – representing the Five Elements – were joined by a named sixth member, Papa Emeritus 0 (or Nihil) on saxophone (when Papa Emeritus III was dragged off stage!).
In January 2021, ‘Papa Emeritus IV’ made his public debut on a Swedish game show. It turns out that ‘Cardinal Copia’ has been consecrated the next Anti-Pope.
Ghost, for a few years, were legally known as ‘Ghost B.C.’ (Before Christ). For unclear legal reasons, the band spent five years under this name, but are now, legally, ‘Ghost’.
The New Single
“Call Me Little Sunshine” continues the irony utilized in the Ghost saga. The track (and video) are pleasant Hard Rock songs, while the lyrics and video reveal that “Little Sunshine” is actually the Devil. Waiting in the constellations of space/time, Little Sunshine is forever waiting for you to call.
“You will never walk alone. You can always reach me.”
“Even when you’re dead and gone, you can always reach me. Just call me.”
Ghost is a great band, and are very talented. Tobias Forge is a genius and a brilliant visionary. While The Saw reserves Ghost to the mellow category, musically, the concept of Ghost (in their theatrical imagery) permeates all of Metal, and all humanity to me. Ghost is a challenge to the status-quo. Not just challenging the way things are done externally (in the scene), but internally as well (in the psyche).
- Opus Eponymous – 2010
- Infestissumam – 2013
- Meliorate – 2015
- Prequels- 2018
- Impera -2022*