- Mats Levén – Vocal
- Mats “Mappe” Björkman – Guitar
- Lars “Lasse” Johansson – Lead guitar
- Leif Edling – Bass
- Jan “Janne” Lindh – Drum
Formation and early career (1984–1990)
After the breakup of his first band Nemesis, bassist Leif Edling started his own band under the name Candlemass with vocalist Johan Längqvist, drummer Matz Ekström, guitarist Mats “Mappe” Bjorkman and Klas Bergwall. Their first release, Epicus Doomicus Metallicus(1986), immediately secured their standing, positioning the band within metal circles, setting a milestone in the doom metal scene. Following the band’s debut album Längqvist was replaced by Messiah Marcolin. By the time the band entered the studio to record their second effort, Nightfall, in 1987, Bergwall and Ekström had left the band. Jan Lindhjoined the band on drums, and Lars Johansson joined the band on guitars following the completion of the album.
Candlemass’s next two albums were Ancient Dreams (1988) and Tales of Creation (1989). In 1990, the band released a live album Live. Shortly afterward, a dispute between the band members resulted in Messiah Marcolin’s departure.
New singer-era, hiatus and first reunion (1991–2003)
After Marcolin left, Candlemass recruited vocalist Thomas Vikström and recorded Chapter VI (1992). The band then toured in support of that album. By 1994, Candlemass had called it quits, partly because Chapter VI was unsuccessful and partially because Edling had formed another project under the name of Abstrakt Algebra. With Abstrakt Algebra not doing well, Leif suddenly recruited a new line-up under the name of Candlemass and recorded the album Dactylis Glomerata, which was a combination of songs for a new Abstrakt Algebra CD and some new material. A year later the album From the 13th Sun was released.
In 2002, the members of a past Candlemass line-up reunited. They performed some well-received live shows and released another live album. Other albums released by the reformed band were remastered versions of Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, Nightfall, Ancient Dreams, and Tales of Creation. A DVD called Documents of Doom was released as well. The band was working on a new album and recorded some new songs while searching for a record label when differences arose again, resulting in Candlemass disbanding a second time. In the meantime, Leif Edling started a new project, Krux, with former Abstrakt Algebra singer Mats Levénand two members of Entombed.
Second reunion (2004–2006)
In November 2004, the band announced that they had re-united for the second time. They had recorded a new album, named simply Candlemass, with the same line-up. It was released in May 2005. They won a Swedish Grammy for it in 2005.
In 2006 the band announced that a new album was in preparation, to be released sometime in 2007. In October 2006, after much uncertainty regarding Messiah Marcolin’s participation, it was settled that Messiah was out for good.
Robert Lowe era (2007–2012)
Candlemass found a new vocalist, Robert Lowe (Solitude Aeturnus), who recorded with the band’s ninth album King of the Grey Islands, which was released on June 22, 2007. The album is self-produced except for four songs produced by Andy Sneap.
On March 31, 2007, Candlemass celebrated a slightly delayed twentieth anniversary. To commemorate the celebration, original singer Johan Längqvist appeared live with the band for the first time. The event was recorded and later released as a DVD.
Mats “Mappe” Bjorkman was sentenced to serve two years behind bars for grand theft in March 2008. He has been convicted of stealing over 35,000 CDs and DVDs priced at around 3 million Sek (Around $500,000).
Candlemass worked on a tenth studio album in 2008. It was intended to be titled Hammer of Doom, but they renamed it to Death Magic Doom because the name coincided with a German festival. The album was scheduled to be released on March 27, 2009, but it was delayed until April 3, 2009.
In 2009, bassist Leif Edling told Soundshock that work on the next Candlemass album would likely begin before 2011. However, this plan fell through, and Leif had stated that the album’s release date was pushed back to 2012, in order for the band concentrate on the 25th anniversary of their 1986 debut Epicus Doomicus Metallicus.
On October 14, 2011, it was announced that Candlemass were signed to the Austrian label Napalm Records, who released their final studio album Psalms for the Dead in June 2012. Despite this, bassist Leif Edlinghas said that the band will not split up and they want to stop before they “get too old and start putting out half-lame albums.”
Mats Levén as new singer and future (2012–present)
On June 2, 2012, Candlemass announced via their website that Robert Lowe had left the band as vocalist, mainly due to the quality of the live performances and explained to be “a very difficult decision for the band”, and would be replaced for the band’s upcoming shows by longtime friend and collaborator of Candlemass, Mats Levén (of Yngwie Malmsteen, Therion, Treat and At Vance fame, among others). Levén had earlier worked with Leif Edling in Abstrakt Algebra and Krux and sang on demos from the Candlemass and King of the Grey Islands sessions, found on the box set Doomology. In addition, keyboardist Per Wiberg (ex-Opeth, Spiritual Beggars) would also join the band on stage for these live shows.
In January 2013, Candlemass was voted the greatest Swedish hard rock/metal band of all time by the writers of Sweden Rock Magazine, Scandinavia’s biggest hard rock magazine as well as Sweden’s biggest music magazine by circulation. They were featured in a list of the 100 greatest Swedish hard rock/metal bands of all time in a special jubilee edition, to celebrate the magazine’s 100th issue. In connection with this, it was also revealed that Candlemass, along with death metal band Entombed (No. 2 on the list), were to perform jointly at a special jubilee concert in Stockholm arranged by the magazine. In July 2014, Candlemass headlined the Väsby Rock Festival in their hometown Upplands Väsby.
Despite earlier claims that Psalms for the Dead would be their final album, bassist Leif Edling has stated that he is open to recording new music with Candlemass again. To coincide with the 30th anniversary of Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, Candlemass released the EP Death Thy Lover on June 3, 2016. Additionally on April 29, 2016 the band released a career-spanning coffee-table book. The book also contained two CDs containing the top picks by Leif Edling and Messiah Marcolin respectively, an CD with rare tracks from their early career (including the Witchcraft demo), and two DVDs with three live performances.
The Door To Doom / 2019
Psalms For The Dead / 2012
- The Sound Of Dying Demons
- Dancing In The Temple (Of The Mad Queen Bee)
- The Lights Of Thebe
- Psalms For The Dead
- The Killing Of The Sun
- Siren Song
- Black As Time
Psalms for the Dead is the eleventh studio album by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released on 8 June 2012. Despite claiming that this is their final album, the members of the band have insisted that they will not break up, and bassist Leif Edlinghas stated that he is open to recording new music with Candlemass again. It is, however, the last Candlemass album recorded with singer Robert Lowe, who left the band just six days before its release.
As like as the two previous albums, Psalms for the Dead received rave reviews by either music critics or band fans upon release.
Death Magic Doom / 2009
- If I Ever Die
- Hammer Of Doom
- The Bleeding Baroness
- Demon Of The Deep
- House Of 1000 Voices
- Dead Angel
- Clouds Of Dementia
- My Funeral Dreams
Death Magic Doom is the tenth studio album by the Swedish epic doom metal band Candlemass.
King Of The Grey Islands / 2007
- Emperor Of The Void
- Devil Seed
- Of Stars And Smoke
- Demonia 6
- Man Of Shadows
- The Opal City
- Embracing The Styx
- At The Gallows End (With Rob Lowe)
- Solitude (With Rob Lowe)
King of the Grey Islands is the ninth studio album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released on 22 June 2007. This is the first album recorded following the departure of vocalist Messiah Marcolin, who left the band during the pre-production phase of the album. He was replaced by Robert Lowe, who would stay with the band until his departure in June 2012.
A digipak version contains two bonus studio session tracks with Robert Lowe. The album was also released as a double vinyl LP with the bonus track “Edgar Grey”. A tin box set edition (limited to 500 copies) was also released, which included a bonus 3″ CD with two bonus tracks: “Black Dwarf” and “Demonia 6 (early version)”. “Black Dwarf” is a re-recording with Lowe on vocals. These songs also appear on the “Black Dwarf” 7″.
Upon its release, the album was met with widespread acclaim from both critics and fans.
Candlemass / 2005
- Black Dwarf
- Seven Silver Keys
- Assassin Of The Light
- The Man Who Fell From The Sky
- Born In A Tank
- The Day And The Night
- Mars And Volcanos
Candlemass is the eighth studio album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released in 2005. This was the band’s last album with singer Messiah Marcolin.
A video for the album’s opener, “Black Dwarf”, was made. The song “Witches” was also included in the soundtrack for the 2009 video game Brütal Legend.
From The 13th Sun / 1999
- Elephant Star
- Blumma Apt
- Arx/NG 891
From the 13th Sun is the seventh studio album album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released in 1999. The CD liner notes say it is “dedicated to the greatest band of all time: Black Sabbath”.
Dactylis Glomerata / 1998
- I Still See The Black
- Abstract Sun
- Lidocain God
- Soothe Me Into Oblivion
Dactylis Glomerata is the sixth studio album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released in 1998. This was their first album released since their split in 1994.
The album was originally destined to be the second release by Candlemass main songwriter Leif Edling’s side-project Abstrakt Algebrabut, under request from the record label Music for Nations, it was converted in a Candlemass album. There were many musicians involved in the long process of recording, including members of the Abstrakt Algebra’s line-up, guitarist Michael Amott of Arch Enemyand Carcass fame and new singer Björn Flodkvist.
The music on the album lacks much of the epic doom sound of previous works and embraces a more experimental and progressive approach, with elements of stoner rock and space rock.
In 2006, it was reissued by GMR Music as a 2 CD edition. The second disc contains the previously unreleased album Abstrakt Algebra II, from which this album’s tracks derived.
Chapter VI / 1992
- The Dying Illusion
- Julie Laughs No More
- Where The Runes Still Speak
- The Ebony Throne
- Temple Of The Dead
- Black Eyes
- The End Of Pain
Chapter VI is the fifth studio album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released in 1992. This was the first Candlemass album not to feature Messiah Marcolin on vocals since their 1986 debut Epicus Doomicus Metallicus. On this one, Thomas Vikström took his place. After poor sales of the album, Candlemass subsequently disbanded in early 1994, only to reform three years later.
Tales Of Creation / 1989
- The Prophecy
- Dark Reflections
- Voices In The Wind
- Under The Oak
- Into The Unfathomed Tower
- The Edge Of Heaven
- Somewhere In Nowhere
- Through The Infinitive Halls Of Death
- A Tale Of Creation
Tales of Creation is the fourth album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released in 1989 and reissued in 2001 with a bonus CD.
Some of the material from this album (“Dark Reflections”, “Under the Oak”, “Into the Unfathomed Tower”, “Somewhere in Nowhere” and “A Tale of Creation”) were originally recorded in 1985 by one of the earliest incarnations of Candlemass. “Under the Oak” is actually a remake of a song from their 1986 debut Epicus Doomicus Metallicus. The cover art is a modified Gustave Doré’s work “The Creation of Light”.
Tales of Creation was also the last to feature vocalist Messiah Marcolin for 15 years until he (temporarily) came back.
Ancient Dreams / 1988
- Mirror, Mirror
- A Cry From The Crypt
- Darkness In Paradise
- Incarnation Of Evil
- Bearer Of Pain
- Ancient Dreams
- The Bells Of Acheron
- Epistle No. 81
- Black Sabbath Medley
Ancient Dreams is the third album of Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released in 1988 and reissued in 2001 by Powerline Records with bonus CD. The cover art of the album is a painting made by Thomas Cole, second in his series, “The Voyage of Life”, entitled “Youth”. Ancient Dreams was the first Candlemass album to chart in the US, debuting at No. 174 on the Billboard 200 album chart.
“Epistle 81” (Märk hur vår skugga), was written by Swedish poet/musician Carl Michael Bellman (1740 – 1795). “Incarnation of Evil” is actually a reworked version of the old Nemesis track “Black Messiah.”
The band is not happy with the album mix, and they place the blame on their (then) record label rush-producing the LP to coincide with a US tour.
Nightfall / 1987
- Gothic Stone
- The Well Of Souls
- Codex Gigas
- At The Gallows End
- Marche Funebre
- Dark Are The Veils Of Death
- Mourner’s Lament
- Black Candles
Nightfall is the second studio album by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released on 9 November 1987 through Axis Records. After being dropped from the label Black Dragon Records, Candlemass were the first band signed to Axis. The group had a new line-up from their previous album including vocalist Messiah Marcolin, whose decisions became instrumental during the production and release stages of the album.
Two singles were released from Nightfall: “Samarithan” and “At the Gallows End”. A music video was directed by for the song “Bewitched” by Jonas Åkerlund. The album has been re-released in various formats and was followed up by Ancient Dreams in 1988.
Epicus Doomicus Metallicus / 1986
- Demon’s Gate
- Crystal Ball
- Black Stone Wielder
- Under The Oak
- A Sorcerer’s Pledge
Epicus Doomicus Metallicus is the debut album of the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass. It was released June 10, 1986 on Black Dragon Records.
On its release, the album had a significantly different sound than other European heavy metal bands of the time, because of their use of operatic vocals mixed over slow and heavy guitar riffs. The album did not sell well on its initial release, which led to the group being dropped from the label during the same year. Since then, the album has been re-issued in several different formats. The album title Epicus Doomicus Metallicus is a Dog Latin rendering of Epic Doom Metal — the genre which the band pioneered and is most commonly identified.
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