Ghost Delivers Sermon to Kansas City

Good day friends and fellow fans! It has been some time since my last writing. When I last left you all, I’m pretty sure I was reviewing an emo show, and it was just starting to get uncomfortably hot out. Well, folks, the review I am bringing you today is from a different climate and sound all together. Mama always said variety is the spice of life.

I don’t know if my friends are anything like your friends, but towards the end of September, people usually start really gearing up for all things spooky: goblins, monsters, skeletons, and GHOSTS! And what better way to get into the spirit of things that with a show from Carpenter Brut and the masters of satanic sounds, Ghost!

Carpenter Brut opened things up with a trippy red flashing light show to accompany their song Escape from Midwich Valley. Immediately, the sound reminded me of Daft Punk being directed in a horror movie.

Flanked by a few supporting band members, the set continued with heavy synth beats with a very liberal dose of the occult influence. Horror clips played in the background as the 10 song set list continued. IF it wasn’t for the band following them, I could have honestly watched them for a few hours. This band would be fun to see at some horror themed dance party. The set concluded with an amazing rendition of Michael Sembello’s Maniac. The combination of sound, visuals, and general spooky vibe yielded a very enjoyable experience.

Next up is a band that needs no introduction, but I’m going to do it anyway. Ghost either formed in 2006, 2008, or around time the Catholic Church experienced the East-West Schism of 1054. Papa Emeritus III and the Nameless Ghouls currently lead this group in a quest to overthrow both countries and churches.

Our hellish hosts opened up their set with their new song Square Hammer from their Popestar EP (also the name of the tour). After that, there wasn’t a place to stand in the whole venue. Not that the crowd sucked, either. It’s because from the second they begin, this show is something worth seeing.

After Square Hammer was one of my favorite songs, From The Pinnacle to the Pit. At this point, if you weren’t moving and grooving to this song, you were probably dead. Hell, even if you were dead, you’d still be dancing at this show.

During the first half of the show, Papa Emeritus was decked out in his finest pope hat and robe, while the Nameless Ghouls wore their signature masks. The first half raged on with songs from their earlier works such as Stand By Him, and Con Clavi Con Dio from Opus Eponymous, and Body and Blood, and Secular Haze from Infestissumam.

The second half of the show saw Papa Emeritus in a different outfit – this time wearing a black suit – but in no way rocking any less. (Photos of him in that outfit can be seen in our review of Rockfest) The second half seemed to favor more recent releases such as He Is, Absolution, Mummy Dust, and Grammy Winner Cirice, all from 2015’s album Meliora. After initially closing the set with Ritual, the band came back to encore with Monstrance Clock.

In between smoke, and beer breaks, I like to find out where people are coming from to see these bands. Despite Ghost’s rather large tour schedule, Kansas City’s Midland theatre still saw people coming from as far as a few hundred miles to see one hell of a show. Like with many other die-hard band followers, these people were no stranger to seeing Ghost before.

If you’re like me and have only seen this band play a festival OR if you haven’t seen this band play at all – I implore you –nay! – beg you to check this band out. They just kicked off the Popestar tour, and are playing through October in the United States. If you’re overdue for a nice road trip and an even better show, go buy your tickets now.

Words by Dallas Hessel
Photos by Josh Chaikin

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