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Ghost was formed in 2006, when future band leader Tobias Forge wrote the song “Stand By Him”. He said, “I said that this is probably the most heavy metal riff that has ever, When the chorus came to me, it haunted my dreams. Every time I picked up the guitar, I ended up playing that progression, and when I fit the words in, it seemed to cry out for a Satanically-oriented lyric.” Forge then contacted his former Repugnant bandmate Gustaf Lindström to record the song.
Ghost’s music has been categorized in many genres, critics have classified them as hard rock, heavy metal, doom metal,pop rock, progressive rock, psychedelic rock, occult rock,and arena rock. Adrien Begrand stated that Ghost recalls “the early sounds of Black Sabbath, Pentagram, and Judas Priest, as well as the progressive and psychedelic rock of the late ’60s.”A Nameless Ghoul described Ghost as a black metal band in the traditional sense, but said that they probably do not fit into the norms of the current black metal scene.
Their lyrics are often Satanic in nature; one Ghoul said, “the first album is about the forthcoming arrival of the Devil, spoken very much in biblical terms, much like the church will say that doomsday is near. Infestissumam is about the presence of the Devil and the presence of the Antichrist.” However, the band has said several times their image is all tongue-in-cheek, citing that “We have no militant agenda. We are an entertainment group.”Additionally, a Nameless Ghoul said the second album is about “how mankind—predominantly men—what they have deemed to be the presence of the Devil, throughout history and even nowadays. And that’s why the record is so fueled with sexual themes and females … the Inquisition was basically men accusing women of being the Devil just because they had a hard-on for them.
The group’s theatrics are influenced by Kiss, David Bowie and Alice Cooper, but a member said they are more influenced by Pink Floyd.