You need to have spent your time from playing Top 40 pop rock in order to know how to play a song like 'Ritual,' a song like 'Absolution' or 'Idolatrine.' You need to know your classic drumming and your classic guitar.
In grade one and two, I was definitely into heavy metal and Satanic rock music, bands that had attributes that were quote-unquote 'Satanic,' even things like the Rolling Stones with 'Their Satanic Majesties Request' and 'Sympathy for the Devil,' but also like Motley Crue and Kiss and Alice Cooper.
I would like to say, and I think I am truthful, and I think I am honest when I say that I love doing Ghost. And if I didn't feel as passionate as I am and have been, about it, wanting to focus, basically, all my time on it, I don't wanna do it.
I grew up in Sweden. It's a profoundly Americanized country. We have a strong tradition of Americana and always had non-dubbed American television, and embracing American culture a lot, so I always knew that I wanted to go to America.
I like the fact that my work in Ghost is famous, and people know it, and we have our crowd. But I am not as antsy about getting recognized on the street as I might have once been.
I'm an okay drummer, I'm an okay bass player, I'm an okay keyboardist, and I'm a quite good guitar player.
You don't accidentally turn into a big band. Not even Nirvana accidentally turned into a big band. They toured - they wanted to become a big band. They didn't necessarily want to become that big of a band, but they still wanted to make a really good record and wanted to come out and tour.
I usually write a lot. I don't make an album and don't write for two years and then end up with a blank paper starting over.
Even when I wrote death metal songs for a death metal record, I was always trying to do my best to make it as catchy as possible because that's how I like music.
I prefer catchy, passionate, temperamental music. And as an upside of that, Ghost's repertoire has, over the years, been piqued by a few, sort of, hits.
If you're going to a show that we're providing support for, or a large festival, you're obviously going to see a condensed version. We have to shave off some fat from the show, so we have to stick to the so-called 'bangers.'
Not only did we read a lot at home, we also watched a lot of films. So I had already seen a lot of films that were about the crucifixion and the temptation of Christ, like Bible history and the Ten Commandments - stuff like that.
Even though 'Prequelle' is a record about death, essentially, it's a record about survival, and I think that that is something that's gone through all the records. Even back to 'Opus Eponymous,' there was a double meaning to things that doesn't necessarily have to do with evil sermons out of some old grimoire somewhere how to summon the devil.
Most bands that don't want to become big at all, they don't play. If you don't want to be known, if you don't want to make it, don't play. That's the easiest way not to do it.
There are many artists that I know exactly where they are born and what their names are and where they live, which are still very, sort of, hidden. Even Nick Cave, who has a film about himself nowadays, is still someone who I would claim to be utterly enigmatic.
The original idea of being anonymous - it was a great, naive idea on paper in 2008, not knowing to what degree we'd be touring or to what extent this was going to be a professional operation. That regimen is very hard to live by. What I hadn't foreseen was the fans and their willingness to embrace that and play along.
When you have a fruitful relationship with someone, and you've both chosen to work together, then it can spawn really good things.
Technically, a Ghost song could just be piano and vocals, but it could also be full, pounding, heavy-thrashing hard rock.
Even in my hometown of Linkoping where I grew up... the church we had was very lavish - very boasty. So it ticked most of the boxes of big, imposing Christianity. And I love being there if I'm in town... because it's just this haunting place.
Even when I was a kid, I always sort of identified myself with Keith Richards and Slash more than the singers of the bands.