During an appearance on Rock Talk With Mitch Lafon, Ghost leader Tobias Forge was asked about the importance of the band's image to its overall success so far.
"Well, it's very important," the musician replied, adding ( transcribed by UG ):
"But I will always hold the fact that with, Ghost music did come first.
"And because I knew that there was going to be a visual presentation that was going to be spectacular, I also made sure that the songs came out on MySpace before any photo did.
"I can honestly say that anyone who listened to Ghost early on did so without knowing what it looked like, what it was going to be looking like, so I know for a fact that the first thousands of people that started liking Ghost did so without even knowing what it looked like.
"Therefore, I dare to say that the music did come first. It was music."
"And now, fast-forward 10 years, I'd say that if we had a real kick-ass image - if the image here was great, we had the bombs and the fire and all that... but if the song stunk, we would not have been here.
"For me, they go in tandem. For me, it's, like, my work, my job is to write cool songs for Ghost and we package it in this awesome sort of theatrical show. I don't spend much time trying to overanalyze that. It is what it is, I just try to improve it.
"Every time I write a song, I try to write a better song than I've ever written before. Sometimes you do it, sometimes you don't. Every time we put together a new stage show, we try to do something that we haven't been able to do before, and luckily so far, we've managed to make better records and bigger shows.
"So far, we're sort of we're moving in a trajectory that sort of points slightly up."
You've changed band members over the years. Where do we go in terms of new music? Is it still a band thing or is it just going to be Tobias?
"I'm going to make this next record the same way that I've done every record, and that is me being in charge - that's how it's always been. And then there's been, like, various people coming in and out in terms of performing for the most part, which is not a secret anymore.
"But I've used the same drummer that has never been with the band ever throughout most of the recordings, and I think that will remain because we have a very good working relationship and he does a very good job, and it feels like one of those nice reunions every time there's a recording.
"Nowadays, also, I've found there is this good thing about considering the amount of time that we spend on the road, it is actually quite good for sustainability to be able to part when it's time to wrap a tour, and then during the recording you don't see much of each other.
"That was the point also during all those years, so some people that were playing in earlier incarnations of the band, incarnations were not at all present during the downtime, and some of them insisted on being, just because they wanted to be present, but I was always for the idea of parting at those moments just to be able to tour as much as I wanted to.
"As you've seen throughout rock history, there's been a lot of bands breaking up because you basically spend all that time together."