Ghost + Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats + Twin Temple
@ OVO Hydro Glasgow
13th April 2022
Pictures & Review by Gavin Lowrey
Ghost’s “Impera” album was one of the most eagerly anticipated albums of 2022 and their resulting “Imperatour” in all its splendour has been blowing people’s socks off since it kicked off in Reno in January.
Reviews raving for its gregarious & dramatic show, it’s been the talk of the town and this evening they brought the show to Glasgow’s OVO Hydro arena.
Ghost’s eclectic mix of catchy tunes and rocky riffs leads to a wide range of characters in the audience, from your classic metal concert-goer to the cosplay family & guys in pink polo shirts more akin to Weatherspoons.
The support on this tour comes from stoner psychedelic aficionados Uncle Acid & the Deadbeats and everyone’s favourite doo-wop satanists Twin Temple
Twin Temple‘s satanic 60’s rock n’ roll is the perfect foil to Ghost and it’s them who open the show bang on time.
Twin Temple’s primary driving forces are the husband and wife team of Zachary & Alexandra James, whose love of all things satanic makes for a great show mixed with 60’s rock ‘n’ roll akin to Buddy Holly, using it to preach to the audience the values of all forms of equality.
Their sound is great and Alexandra James’ powerful voice is Amy Winehouse-esque at times. “Let’s have a Satanic Orgy,” she asks the healthy Glasgow crowd as the set is is in full swing, and the way things were going, she has plenty of takers.
The size of the crowd to see them goes some way to showing their popularity with the Ghost faithful and if you weren’t a fan at the start of their set, you definitely were by the end (8/10).
Let’s Have A Satanic Orgy
Sandwiched in the middle of the show are Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats. The opening chords of “Mindcrawler” hit the crowd with a Stooges-esque vibe and we’re off on a psychedelic trip of dark lighting and fuzzy sounds that get the crowd going very easily.
It’s like there are thick layers of sound emanating from the stage and beating your ears into submission. Obvious comparisons with the likes of Sabbath have been thrown at them since they started but to me, they have their own identity that sits somewhere around the late sixties/early seventies, and they are masters at it.
Despite the lighting effects not being the best (yet also matching the vibe in the arena), the band do have a connection with the audience and the set is well received. Again, I think they made several new fans as the evening wore on, which at the end of the day is what it’s all about, so mission accomplished (8/10).
I’ll Cut You Down
There are massive levels of excitement and anticipation in equal amounts as the lights go off and the only thing you can see is a silhouette of one of Ghost‘s Nameless Ghouls playing the intro to their opener “Kaisarion” against the white curtain covering the stage after the intro music has finished.
The curtain drops and we are greeted by three of the Ghouls coming to the front of the stage to meet the cheering crowd.
Then out of nowhere Tobias Forge, aka Papa Emeritus, appears and we are off and running. There is an audible cheer over the music as he begins to strut the stage, taking the adulation of the doting Glasgow crowd.
The catchy opener is lapped up by the crowd and there is no time to rest before we’re into “Rats”, which has the audience singing along in full voice, matching Forge’s excellent note-perfect delivery.
The crowd are struggling to breathe as the bass line of “Pinnacle to the Pit” bounces off everyone’s chests, reverberating through the Hydro like a ping from a submarine’s sonar.
We’re given a treat and a change of vibe as the band slip in “Mary on a Cross”, a song that hasn’t always been played on the tour so far. Then the organ sound of “Devil Church” leads into the guitar-wielding Nameless Ghouls giving us “The Bonny Banks of Loch Lomond”, a satanic twist on Duelling Banjos with a bit of a Scottish vibe.
The doomy “Cirice” sees Forge sporting a pair of bat wings on his latest headpiece before we are treated to the second song from Impera, “Hunter’s Moon” with Forge seemingly visit all sides of the stage to gaze upon his congregation.
The start of “Faith” delivers a marching beat for the track that gets the crowd banging their heads accordingly in admiration.
The pop side of Ghost’s repertoire is on show in “Spillway”, which sounds more ABBA than anything else, Forge’s tip of the hat to one of Sweden’s other most famous musical exports, with a bit of hair metal thrown in for good measure!
More pop harmonies are prevalent in “Ritual” before we get “Call Me Little Sunshine”, which was the first single from Impera. The simple yet haunting riff echoes out from the stage, showing us why it has been a firm fan favourite since its release.
Rather than instrumental solos, we are treated to the track “Helvetesfonster”, showcasing all the Ghouls’ instrumental talents as well as showing a bit of their individual personalities.
The biggest cheer of the evening however is reserved for the haunting vocal intro of “Year Zero” from their 2013 album Infestissumam.
“Spöksonat” feeds into “He Is”, a power ballad of the highest order, before we have more instrumental frolics in the form of “Miasma”, complete with the resurrection of Papa Nihil and his smooth sax playing.
Forge then asks us if we want our asses wobbled as they play “Mummy Dust”, which is probably their heaviest tune of the evening before we out showered with confetti and mummy dust, their very own Ghost currency!
A touch of Swedish pop rock in “Kiss the Go-Goat” closes the set (according to the setlist anyway) before Tobias Forge gives us an eloquent speech about love & inclusivity.
We were all expecting Tobias and his Nameless Ghouls to disappear and return to milk the applause (I later found out it was because the show over ran and there was a fine for every minute over the curfew) but they stay and deliver us their version of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman”, complete with haunting piano intro, their anthemic “Dance Macabre” and their ridiculously catchy “Square Hammer” to finish off proceedings (9.75/10).
Forge asks us to get home safely and “go and fuck someone, and if you can’t fuck someone, go fuck yourself!” which sums up their tongue in cheek attitude to everything.
Ghost seem to have made the transition from opening band to arena headliner with relative ease (combined with a lot of hard work and clever marketing) and this transition seems to have been taken to an even greater level today with their announcement as a headliner for Hellfest on 18th June later this year, long reign Ghost!