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Ghost Releases Star-Studded Video For ‘Dance Macabre’ Single with Members of Metallica, Best Coast, Anthrax & More: Watch
Ghoulish rock band Ghost debuted their new single "Dance Macabre" last week and the accompanying video is packed with famous rockers and athletes.
By Mackenzie Cummings-Grady
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Last week ghoulish rock band Ghost debuted their new single “Dance Macabre,” and quickly followed up with a star-studded visual catered specifically for Instagram Story, featuring a slew of appearances from celebrities and fellow rockers jamming out to the new single.
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Iron Maiden, Ghost Crank Up the Heat in Brooklyn
The list of acts that bang their heads along to the mid-tempo rock tune include: Kirk Hammett ( Metallica ), Bethany Cosentino ( Best Coast ), WWE superstar Chris Jericho, NXT superstar Aleistar Black, Charlie Benante ( Anthrax ), M. Shadows ( Avenged Sevenfold ), actress Jessica Pimentel, Phillip Anselmo ( Pantera ), MMA fighter Josh Barnett, Mike McKenna (NHL Dallas Stars) and Chino Moreno ( Deftones ). The single is off of Ghost’s upcoming album Prequelle , which is set for release on June 1.
Check out the video below:
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Ghost Debut Catchy New Song "Dance Macabre" via Star-Studded Instagram Story
Ghost have unveiled the studio-recorded version of "Dance Macabre," a gloomy, catchy new song that the band has been playing live and which is set to appear on the group's forthcoming album Prequelle. The cut won't be officially released until tomorrow, May 18th, although fans can hear it now exclusively via Ghost's Instagram story — which you can watch above — where it appears alongside reactions from a number of notables: Metallica axeman Kirk Hammett, pro wrestler Chris Jericho, Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante, former Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo, Orange Is the New Black actress Jessica Pimentel, Deftones' Chino Moreno, Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino and Avenged Sevenfold singer M. Shadows, just to name a few.
During our in-studio interview with Ghost mastermind Tobias Forge earlier this year, he talked to us about "Dance Macabre." "Europe was in this turmoil in the late 1340s. The plague is extremely fast," he explained. "It starts off as the worst flu you've ever had and then it just goes worse and then you're dead after three days. So people were lying in the streets — corpses and all the surroundings were just falling apart. All the brothels and pubs were thriving because people started partying literally like there was no tomorrow because they were gonna die. They were just going for it. 'Dance Macabre' is capturing that joyous nocturnal sort of life in a disco song."
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Ghost Cram Rock + Metal Icons Into ‘Dance Macabre’ Video
Ghost 's fourth album is nearly upon us and Sweden's mysterious clergy has enlisted a wealth of rock and metal stars to react to their new song, "Dance Macabre."
The clip begins with Sister Imperator in a spellbound dance, swaying to the arena beat of this new Prequelle track as it blares through her headphones. Next up is Metallica guitarist and horror enthusiast Kirk Hammett , who taps his fingers in stride.
Other stars in the video include Chris Jericho, Charlie Benante, Mike Mckenna, Aleister Black, Jessica Pimentel, Chino Moreno, Josh Barnett, Bethany Cosentino, Philip Anselmo, Young Sister Imperator, and M. Shadows. As the song moves on and reveals its infectious hooks, gleaming melodies and anthemic splashes, the participants begin to digest "Dance Macabre," getting into it more, even singing along by the end.
"Huge song, huge song," affirms Anselmo as the video comes to a close.
The song is the second Prequelle track to be released, following the lead single "Rats." Speaking about "Rats," the man behind the mask, Tobias Forge, told us , "When we made 'Square Hammer,' we needed a big opening track. It was inspired by various explosive opening tracks and records. Specifically, when I was a kid, there was a concert called the Moscow Peace Festival. It was broadcast on TV. It's one of those moments that I remember so clearly, I was eight years old. Ozzy Osbourne opened with 'I Don't Know,' and it's such a fucking great opening track. This was in front of like 80,000 people, who went nuts. I wanted to have that feel with 'Rats.' It's supposed to feel like that sort of opening track. A song that could get 80,000 people to jump. If you ever want to play bigger places, you need to have records that sound like you're playing in big places."
Prequelle comes out on June 1 and Ghost are already on the road promoting the album. Check out the upcoming dates to see if they're stopping at a city near you.
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GHOST Releases New Song 'Dance Macabre' Via Instagram Stories
Grammy Award -winning rock band GHOST today treated fans to an early listen of track "Dance Macabre" off its forthcoming fourth sacred psalm, "Prequelle" . The song is available to stream in its entirety for a limited time exclusively via @thebandghost Instagram Stories . Watch Sister Imperator , Chris Jericho , Kirk Hammett , Charlie Benante , Mike Mckenna , Aleister Black , Jessica Pimentel , Chino Moreno , Josh Barnett , Bethany Cosentino , Phil Anselmo , Young Sister Imperator and Matt Shadows react to the song in the story here . The song will be available to hear tomorrow, May 18, on all platforms and as a complementary download for fans who pre-ordered the album.
"Prequelle" will be released on June 1 via Loma Vista Recordings . The record was tracked last year at Artery studios in Stockholm with producer Tom Dalgety ( OPETH , ROYAL BLOOD ) and mixed in January at Westlake Studios in West Hollywood, California with Andy Wallace ( NIRVANA , SLAYER ).
GHOST played the first official show of the "Rats! On The Road" U.S. tour on May 5 at Riverside Municipal Auditorium in Riverside, California. In addition to the previously released new single "Rats" , which opened the concert, GHOST played four more songs from the upcoming album, including "Faith" , "Dance Macabre" , "Miasma" and "Pro Memoria" . "Miasma" featured a saxophone solo from Papa Nihil , the aged "original" Papa Emeritus .
The band broke its show up into two sets, with the first featuring 12 songs and the second consisting of 11 numbers. The group spread out the new material across both sets, interspersed with fan favorites and hits like "Cirice" , "From The Pinnacle To The Pit" , "He Is" , "If You Have Ghosts" and show closer "Square Hammer" .
The band has expanded its onstage lineup to include at least eight musicians, not including the guest appearance from Papa Nihil .
Photo credit: Mikael Eriksson
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The story behind the song: Dance Macabre by Ghost
How Ghost’s Tobias Forge built a world around a myth, and reaped a gleeful “pure eighties rock-club banger” in Dance Macabre
"What I’ve tried to do is make Ghost a little more Queen than AC/DC ,” Tobias Forge says, of the ambitious menagerie of sounds of his band’s 2018 album Prequelle . “I don’t mind a good rock banger at all, but with Ghost every song has to have its own clear idea and structure.
" What I expanded on in Infestissumam and Meliora was that a Ghost song is not necessarily something that just starts with a big guitar intro. With Ghost you can do pretty much anything.”
He pauses, before adding with a smile: “I’m a little rock opera with my music.”
By this point the hitherto ‘secret’ (but not really) identity of frontman Papa Emeritus (reborn as Cardinal Copia, but more on that in a moment) was officially out. A lawsuit involving former bandmates accelerated Forge’s decision to ‘unmask’. Come 2018 and the release of fourth Ghost album Prequelle – with a new band – and the spotlight moved to the songs themselves.
They didn’t disappoint, least of all Dance Macabre . Classic Rock ’s album review said it was “a pure 80s rock-club banger that’s as audacious as it is glorious”. If Europe revisited The Final Countdown , with Satan, and swapped some (but not all) of the synths for guitars, this could have been the result.
Warmly embraced by the metal world, despite being about as un-metal as ABBA, Dance Macabre defied heavy music conventions and nailed one of the most irresistible choruses of the century. Like Iron Maiden , Marilyn Manson and Slipknot before them, Ghost have become one of those rare bands for whom a new album is so much more than a new album. It’s an event, a chance for fans who’ve waited with baited breath to see what new imagery, storytelling and feats of showmanship await them.
In the way only the best bands manage, it seemed that just as we were starting to get used to the Ghost formula, Tobias had fucked with it spectacularly.
“I’ve always tried to make things hard for myself,” he says with a sly grin. “Instead of just doing big, blunt commercial statements, I’m trying to do things in a more cinematic way. If we just continued with Papa to Papa to Papa to Papa, that would grow very boring.”
If this talk of Papas and secret identities has thrown you, here’s a brief explanation. Pre- Prequelle , Ghost’s frontman had always taken the form of Papa Emeritus, a corpse-painted, Pope-like figure delivering sermonic odes to life, love, death, sex and Satan on behalf of the mysterious Clergy, backed on stage by hooded, anonymous musicians known as the Nameless Ghouls. Each new album meant a ‘new Papa’ with a modified new look.
Then, just in time for Prequelle , things changed with the arrival of the more youthful, agile Cardinal Copia. Dressed in a black cassock, his sunken, haunted eyes peeking out from under his biretta, and sporting the kind of villainous ’tache that would have Dick Dastardly twiddling with glee, Cardinal Copia is part Monty Python, part medieval nightmare; the kind of character who perfectly occupies the murky space between camp showmanship and gothic horror that Ghost have inhabited since day one.
In short, he’s the personification of Prequelle , of which Dance Macabre is the ultimate drug that metalheads, rockers and pop fans alike just can’t resist. In the run-up to the album’s release, its gleaming, musical theatre-rivalling refrain of ‘ Just wanna be, wanna bewitch you! ’ was the one that everyone in the Louder offices sang at some point.
For Forge, being recognised as a shadowy, face-painted lothario, rather than his actual trendy Swedish 30-something self, feels comfortable for the time being. “I will never be able to outshine my characters,” he says. “And I’m fine with that. I am quite happy not being the main visual aspect of the creation. I would like to take credit, in as much as I’m responsible for it happening, but I don’t have to be the focal point.”
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Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He is also probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.
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Watch Ghost’s Star-Studded ‘Dance Macabre’ Video
Ghost have released a video for their new track “Dance Macabre,” featuring Kirk Hammett of Metallica , Charlie Benante of Anthrax , former Pantera frontman Phil Anselmo and a range of guests from the music, wrestling and acting worlds. The song appears on the band's upcoming album Prequelle , which arrives on June 1. You can watch the video below.
Ghost said in a statement: “We wish to inform you ‘Dance Macabre’ has infested the nation. A special thanks to: Kirk Hammett (Metallica), Bethany Cosentino (Best Coast), WWE Superstar Chris Jericho, NXT Superstar Aleistar Black, Charlie Benante (Anthrax), Matt Shadows (Avenged Sevenfold), Actress Jessica Pimental, Philip Anselmo (Pantera) MMA Fighter Josh Barnett , Mike McKenna (NHL Dallas Stars), Chino Moreno (Deftones) & Ghost's very own Sister Imperator.”
Ghost frontman Tobias Forge recently said his writing for Prequelle been informed by the “pre-apocalyptic aura” he saw in current political tensions between the U.S. and Russia. He argued that, in such environments, people felt as if they were “being attacked, or potentially could become attacked by anyone.” However, he went on to say that Prequelle took an unusual viewpoint of world-changing dramas. “[U]sually it's focusing on the idea of the half of the population that died, whereas I wanted to make a record that sort of shone the light on surviving through a turmoil like that," he said. "This is a record about survival, but through somewhat troubled times."
The band’s Rats on the Road tour began on May 5 and runs until May 27.
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Ghost unveil Papa’s romantic past in “Dance Macabre” video: Watch
"It's about dancing the night away"
Having recently released a disco remix of the song “Dance Macabre”, Ghost have now unveiled a music video for the original album track. The clip beautifully depicts the origins of a young Papa Emeritus and the start of his romantic relationship with Sister Imperator, a recurring character in the world of Ghost.
The video (watch below), directed by Zev Deans, starts out with a bit of an homage to The Rocky Horror Picture Show , as two young men knock on the door of a party, with a creepy host greeting them at the door. From there, the two get separated, as one of them falls for a blonde woman on the dance floor. From there, the story of Papa and Sister Imperator begins.
The song itself is about the 14th century Black Plague of Europe that decimated millions, with the video serving somewhat as a celebration of the End of Days.
“It’s about dancing the night away,” Ghost frontman Tobias Forge (aka Cardinal Copia) tells us of the video. “Ironically, this video is a little bit about the beginning, whereas the song is about the end, but then again, the world comes to an end often. You can regard it as the beginning of [Papa and Sister Imperator’s] relationship.”
As for the dance vibe of track, which is the latest single off the band’s Prequelle album, Forge explained to us, “Originally, I wasn’t necessarily entertaining the idea that it would be a Ghost track … but as soon as I started writing the full lyrics for it, I realized this is going to work [as a Ghost song]. I like the idea of trying to create unique songs … kind of like what Queen did — they have a hard rock song, then they synth song, then they have a ballad.”
Watch the full video below, and be sure to catch Ghost on their upcoming North American tour, which kicks off October 26th in Tulsa, Oklahoma. From there, Ghost will embark on a headlining European tour of their own, before supporting Metallica in the spring and summer of 2019. See the band’s headlining dates here and their support dates on Metallica’s trek here .
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Ghost unveil papa's romantic past in "dance macabre" video: watch.
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