Enigmatic Swedish metal group Ghost are enjoying their best year yet, riding high on the success of their third album, last year’s Meliora, which garnered a Grammy win, high chart performance, and critical praise. Hitting the road in support of their latest effort, Ghost will pass through Nashville, where they recorded their 2013 sophomore effort Infestissumam, tonight, May 3 at Marathon Music Works along with London’s Purson. The latest in an unusually great streak of metal shows so far this year, we don’t have to tell you heavy music fans how memorable this one is sure to be. Tickets are still available right here, so grab yours now and read on for more!
Formed in 2008 in the southern Swedish town of Linköping, Ghost are one of many dark, conceptual, and immensely talented bands to emerge from the flourishing Scandinavian metal scene. Influenced by classic acts like Black Sabbath and Judas Priest, the band have adopted a doom metal sound with hints of death metal, progressive, and psychedelic rock, enhanced by their Satanic-for-show stage persona, which involves closely guarding their real identities (the members are only known as the anti-Pope-like Papa Emeritus III and five “nameless ghouls,” and they’ve altered their personas slightly with each LP), so much so that Dave Grohl was once able to sit in for a show on drums completely undetected. Controversial for their thematic and lyrical focus (notoriously, they couldn’t find a chorus in Nashville to sing their Satanic lyrics, and were forced to seek out talent in LA), it should be noted that the band’s schtick is more of a distilled essence of metal imagery employed for shock and performance art, moreso than a sincere social agenda. After debuting strong with 2010’s Opus Eponymous, the group quickly found an audience in Europe, soon bowing stateside with festival appearances and acclaim from within the metal community. Their sophomore LP, Infestissumam, debuted at #1 in Sweden, and earned the group a Swedish Grammis award, boosting their global presence. With Meliora, Ghost have not only made their best album to date, but have certifiably broken through in the U.S., earning a Grammy and landing in the Billboard top 10. If you’re a metalhead and these guys have yet to catch your ear, it’s time to get acquainted.
Fronted by Rosalie Cunningham, formerly of goth/psychedelic outfit Ipso Facto, English proggy, psych rock outfit Purson might, at first, seem like an odd choice to open this show, but, when you really dive into their sound, you’ll find that they definitely share Ghost’s affinity for unadulterated, guitar-driven, classic rock. Earnest and retro, the band’s sound is at once classic and timeless, and, with the recent release their sophomore LP, Desire’s Magic Theatre, the group seem poised to become a major player in the push to distill rock back to its essence. If your attraction to Ghost stems from the dark, heavier side of things, Purson might throw you, but we strongly encourage you to give them a fair shake!
Ghost and Purson will perform tonight, May 3 at Marathon Music Works. The show is 18+, begins at 8 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.), and tickets are available for $30.