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Ghost w/ Mastodon and Spirtbox

September 12, 2022

Providence, RI

Ghost was pretty sweet! In case you don’t know, they’re a Swedish rock band (some say metal band, but I disagree) and they showed up for a nice Monday night treat at the Providence Civic Center (call it what you will). They’re shtick is that you don’t know who they are. The musicians are all masked and the lead singer is covered in face paint. But his identity was eventually found out. Anyway, let’s start at the beginning of the night.

Spiritbox was the opening band. They got a couple songs on the ole satellite radio these days. Great “up and coming” band with a female lead. She makes a lot of ruckus too. Clear singing, good screaming, hard ass growls. Pretty versatile and a nice heavy, industrial sound. My only complaint was that they played for what felt like only 20 minutes. We wanted more!

Mastodon was next. These dudes have been around since 2000 according to the Google, but I thought they were an older band…like Manowar era. Guess not. Either way, they were kinda shitty. I wasn’t a fan. The guitar playing was decent at times, but I just couldn’t get into it. From my observations, there were two guys there to strictly see Mastodon. And their goofy asses were standing next to me and my buddy Frank while the rest of the arena was all seated. Thanks for blocking our view. Douchebags. We moved back a row and stayed there the rest of the night as the seats were pretty empty.

So why were the seats empty? I don’t know. Perhaps the tour/show wasn’t well promoted. I’ve really been digging Ghost lately and I just happened to find out by chance a week prior that they’d be in town. It was a Monday night, tickets were pricey, and Providence is going down the crapper – this may explain why an arena that holds 14k people was less than ½ full.

The show started with a huge white curtain blocking the stage while Imperium played. I’m still not sure if the band was playing it or if it was pre-recorded. But it’s a great opener to the album and the show. Silhouettes started to appear as the band started playing Kairsarion and then the curtain dropped. Big ole cathedral-like background revealed, pyros ignited, show kicks off!!

Now am I the world’s biggest Ghost fan? By no means. I wasn’t covered in face paint, wearing a mask, dressed in a cape, or dressed as a nun, priest, etc. But I dig their music as a casual listener. Their latest album is fantastic! But there were many hardcore fans there which made for some great people watching. Let your freak flags fly I say!

The night was filled with theatrics, pyros, a hell of a light show, guitar battles, and poor acting right in line with WWE level acting. Tobias Forge, aka Papa Emeritus is quite the showman. He likes to talk with the crowd, commands the stage, and seems to be having himself a good time. During some of the guitar solo and battle shenanigans, they did a heavy guitar version of the opening them for Family Guy – a cartoon based in Rhode Island. Coincidence? No, probably not, but maybe.

When they busted into Miasma, another Papa was rolled out in a glass looking casket that was standing up. They shocked him “back to life” which ignited more pyros, and then he wailed on the saxophone for a bit. It’s a great tune that I recommend checking out. How often do you hear saxophone in a great rock tune? At this point, if I’m keeping track, this made the 10th musician to appear. They had two guitarists, a bass player, drummer and singer as one would expect. But then there were two more backup singers, and two keyboardists. Later in the night, there was a keytar player which may have been number 11 or perhaps one of the keyboard players. Badass!

They played all the hits one would expect including their latest viral hit thanks to TikTok, Mary on a Cross. The night also included Rats, Spillways, Hunter’s Moon, Call me Little Sunshine, Watcher in the Sky, Dance Macabre, and many more. Check out the full setlist here.

I’d go see them again for sure. I just hope the tickets are a little cheaper next time. Anyway, that’s it for now, but more shows coming soon!

About Rob the Concert Guy

I love live music and will pretty much go to just about any concert. I've made a lot of friends because of my willingness to put that extra ticket to good use. I've been to hundreds of shows and finally I decided I should start writing about them. Better late than never I guess.


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