What Is The Coven And Why It Is Dedicated To (the band) Ghost

{Note to readers: this post talks about different subjects which are, in some ways, related to Ghost but in a wider view. It is quite long, so we honestly suggest you not to go through all of it if you are not interested in all the aspects involved in the band' s imagery. Don't say we didn't warn you ;) }


On Why We Chose This Name


   "It Is The Night Of The Witch Tonight
And The Vengeance Is Hers For As Long As She Stands By Him"
 

As it can be easily guessed, the name for this site was inspired by "Stand By Him" in particular. It's not necessarily because it is our favourite one, basically we love each song by Ghost, it's just that we have always been fascinated by the whole subject of witchcraft and occultism, historically and philosophically, and one night, listening to the 5th ritual on "Opus Eponymous", something "clicked" and brought up the idea for this site. Witches were considered to be (or should we say, labelled as) Devil worshippers, so we thought it fitted pretty well with the whole context  and with what we had in mind: we wanted a place to talk about all things Ghost and share it  with anyone else who is truly interested in doing so, not only with regard to their amazing music, but also to their overall concept.

On Why We Are Devoted To Ghost  


 I. The musical factor

 Well, first and foremost, we -obviously- find their music awesome and overwhelming to say the least, and we assume that anyone who visits The Coven  is likely already aware of this. They are undeniably talented songwriters, and the allure of their melodies, combined with the captivating vocals, got us hooked at first listen, and based on their fast-growing number of fans, that is what clearly happened to many other people as well. This also highlights an aspect of the band that basically differentiate them from a lot of other bands out there who involve some, or all, the same imagery that Ghost use (Satanism, costumes, anonimity...):  despite their appearance, they are playing  catchy and irresistible tunes.

 II. The theatrical -and "philosphical"- factor

 "The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist." 
('Verbal' Kint in 'The Usual Suspects', paraphrasing Baudelaire) 

Ghost, leading masses into temptation with their captivating
 music. We think that, in  the video for "Secular Haze", the
alluring nuances used in the scenery, paired with
their dark figures, depict very well their essence . 
 This combination between their image and their music, brings us back to a different idea of the Devil, not explicitly terrifying as presented and referred to by many others, but more of a fascinating and capturing figure, a "trickster", that uses mind-manipulation to make people believe they are getting what they want, only in order to have them doing what he wants (basically a sum of the mercurial-plutonic symbolism, for those of you who are familiar with these terms).

 "Ghost is the name of a devil worshipping ministry, that in order to spread its unholy gospels and, furthermore, trick mankind into believing the end is ultimately a good thing, have decided to use the ever so popular rock music medium as a way to achieve their ends." 

 This is what we read in their (initial) official description, and even if to most of us this is obviously humorous, what makes everything more enjoyable is that in their brilliance, Ghost have so far managed to give their audience  the opportunity  to pretend it could be true because nothing is out of place and   all their aspects, interviews and public communication included, are so well conducted. People who are, like us, horror-nerds and have always enjoyed the "creepy-yet-so-intriguing" vibe, can surely appreciate that they are keeping it as credible as possible.*[See note below]
It takes a little (or not so little, after all) more effort to keep everything together, maintain it in time, and put on an act that's not limited to music itself, you need your skills to be broader in order to create a more involving experience for the audience, and Ghost really have planned very well each side of their project - isn't this true commitment to the art of entertaining? And we love to be entertained, because it is cathartic, and it is probably one of the few tools that such "earthly beings" like us may rely on in order to deal with life and everything that's "unearthly" and therefore very difficult for us to understand.

 III. The anthropological factor

So eventually, what made us become so devoted, is that we admire the cleverness we see behind their overall concept which combines great musical skills of course, but also some acting skills (especially for Papa Emeritus) and  even a bit of, let's say anthropological skills, as we think they are able to offer, with their music and lyrics, a perfect allegory of  what most of us find liberating and appealing,  probably because  reminiscent in our collective unconscious of the playful and youthful side of us .

"[...] We promote disobedience, we promote sex, we promote a lot of things that, from a church point of view, are extremely blasphemous. And we promote laughter, which is highly highly highly blasphemous.[...]"
(A Nameless Ghoul)

 We have never accepted cultures that want us to believe that we are born guilty simply because we are human and that most of our instinctive desires are "evil", basically labelling as 'blasphemous' anything that's enjoyable. It simply makes no sense to us, at all. A human has the right to seek pleasure and fun in life and we think there's absolutely no guilt in that. Does that make us "devil worshippers" already? Well, probably yes, somehow. Therefore, we really couldn't have asked for a better "ministry" than a band like Ghost.    A spiritual leader and his clergy, who praise the archetype of rebellion itself, and they do it through rock music (read: catchy, awesome rock music). Count us in!  This is a "church" we like, a church of blasphemous entertainment. And that's why we call ourselves devotees instead of fans, because we enjoy playing our little part of  "church followers", in a sort of collective horror musical experience.

 But also, more literally, because we think that music is probably the closest humans can get to "divinity", so it's definitely one thing that's worth worshipping. ;)


*Note: It is perhaps better to specify that this was written and published almost a year ago (around February-March 2013) when things were slightly different, especially in interviews. However, we decided to just leave it at that as a memory of how the whole Coven started, and just add this quick note considering the more recent developments in how the whole concept of Ghost has been conducted.
Last edit: XXVIII.XI.MMXIII