Ghost's Tobias Forge and Metallica's Kirk Hammett are currently in the middle of a three-month European tour during which the Swedish theatrical rockers are opening for the thrash megastars in sold-out stadiums and arenas across the continent. Despite the jet-setting summer run, the two musicians took a few minutes of their day to sit down backstage and chat about guitars, preparing for shows big and small, and how bands can fail at really "reaching" the audience sometimes.
Forge and Hammett first bond over Fernandes guitars and how it was difficult for the young Ghost musician to acquire one in the 1980s. When asked by the thrash shredder how he got his hands on one of the Japanese instruments all the way in Sweden, Forge says the chance finding: "I was seven or eight years old ... this was '89? I found one at the guitar shop."
The two then turn to their current tour together, and Forge explains how it can be difficult to hold the attention of 30 or 40 thousand people if you're a newer band with little exposure. Nowadays, he reveals that he takes comfort in knowing Ghost have reached a bit higher level of exposure, saying "We've gone to most of these places several times and we already have a crowd, it feels like there are enough people to like [nods and points] 'Hey yeah, I like what you do.'"
Hammett offers some praise for Ghost's cinematic live shows, before expressing his own pre-show jitters — explaining that he goes into every gig, large or small, with an idea that it's an equally important outing. "In my mind, it's an event and I'm going to approach it like it's the fucking last show I'm going to play and just fucking give it my all," he enthusiastically muses. "Having that mindset allows me to go out there and play the same show ... it's always an event in my mind."