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Opeth – Mastodon – Ghost | April 27, 2012

Mastadon and Opeth, each with critically acclaimed recent releases (The Hunter, Heritage), teamed up for the co-headlining “Heritage Hunter Tour.”   Bringing along Ghost … one of the buzziest up-and-coming metal bands out there who by all accounts absolutely ripped San Francisco a new one when they played a sold out Bottom of the Hill back in February … Friday night at the Fox Theater in Oakland delivered what was certainly one of the best metal shows of the year.

Ghost Gallery

Mastodon Gallery

Opeth Gallery

Clearly the word is out on Ghost. By the time they took the stage at 8pm sharp, there was a sizable crowd waiting in anticipation and no shortage of Ghost t-shirts. First out was masked front man Papa Emeritus swinging a censer (I had to look that word up) filled with smoking incense and followed by the Nameless Ghouls. The chugging crunch from the Ghouls melded well with the soar of Papa’s vocals that would make any monk proud to have him in their choir. Together they presented what was certainly a more potent mix than their recordings would lead one to believe. In Christianity the burning of the incense apparently symbolizes the zeal with which the faithful should be animated; quite appropriate as Ghost was certain to expand their ranks during their short but mesmerizing 30 minute set.

Next up was co-headliner Mastodon. Whatever stupor the crowd may have been left in after the Ghost set quickly evaporated with the opening riffs of Black Tongue … “I burned out my eyes. I cut off my tongue” … what was now a packed sold-out floor went nuts to what would prove to be by far the heaviest set of the night. Never ones for a lot of between song chatter, Mastodon let the music speak for itself, blasting through a whopping 17 songs in 70 minutes. One of those bands that’s know to have its off nights, Mastodon was without a doubt “on” this night. Tight and ferocious.

After the Mastodon set, there appeared to be a massive shift in the crowd as the sweaty mass of Mastodon fans swapped positions with the Opeth loyals, chanting as they waited for the band to take the stage. While Ghost brought the mystery and Mastodon brought the heavy, Opeth ended the night with a groovier prog-oriented set … no less passion from the audience, just a mellower vibe. Kicking things off with a trio off of their 2011 release, Heritage, they kept things more melodic through most of the set including a few tracks off of Watershed. It wasn’t until the end of the set that they delved into their back metal roots with Demons Of The Fall and The Grand Conjuration as their epic set closer.

Ghost Setlist:

  • Con Clavi Con Dio
  • Elizabeth
  • Prime Mover
  • Death Knell
  • Satan Prayer
  • Ritual

Mastodon Setlist:

  • Black Tongue
  • Hand of Stone
  • Crystal Skull
  • Dry Bone Valley
  • Thickening
  • Octopus Has No Friends
  • Blasteroid
  • Stargasm
  • The Hunter
  • Crack the Skye
  • All the Heavy Lifting
  • Spectrelight
  • Curl of the Burl
  • Bedazzled Fingernails
  • Aqua Dementia
  • Blood and Thunder
  • The Sparrow

Opeth Setlist:

  • The Devil’s Orchard
  • I Feel The Dark
  • Slither
  • Windowpane
  • Burden
  • The Lines In My Hand
  • Folklore
  • Demons of the Fall
  • The Grand Conjuration

© 2012 Alan Snodgrass | Please do not use without express permission (contact). If you like what you see, leave a comment below and subscribe so you can be notified of new posts. You can also become a fan on Facebook.

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