Candlemass (band)

Last updated
Candlemass-Live-Wacken 2010.jpg
Candlemass live at Wacken Open Air 2010
Background information
Also known asNemesis (19821984)
Origin Stockholm, Sweden
Genres Epic doom metal [1]
Years active
  • 19841994
  • 19972002
  • 2004present
Associated acts
Members Leif Edling
Mats Björkman
Johan Längqvist
Jan Lindh
Lars Johansson
Past membersKlas Bergwall
Matz Ekström
Messiah Marcolin
Thomas Vikström
Björn Flodkvist
Jejo Perkovic
Michael Amott
Carl Westholm
Mats Ståhl
Robert Lowe
Mats Levén

Candlemass is a Swedish doom metal band established in Stockholm in 1984 by bassist, songwriter and bandleader Leif Edling and drummer Matz Ekström. The band had a defining influence on doom metal, and the genre itself is named after their debut album Epicus Doomicus Metallicus .[ citation needed ] After releasing five full-length albums and touring extensively throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, Candlemass disbanded in 1994, but reunited three years later. After breaking up again in 2002, Candlemass reformed in 2004 and have continued to record and perform since then.

Doom metal is an extreme subgenre of heavy metal music that typically uses slower tempos, low-tuned guitars and a much "thicker" or "heavier" sound than other heavy metal genres. Both the music and the lyrics intend to evoke a sense of despair, dread, and impending doom. The genre is strongly influenced by the early work of Black Sabbath, who formed a prototype for doom metal. During the first half of the 1980s, a number of bands from England, the United States and Sweden defined doom metal as a distinct genre.

Stockholm Capital of Sweden

Stockholm is the capital of Sweden and the most populous urban area in the Nordic countries; 965,232 people live in the municipality, approximately 1.6 million in the urban area, and 2.4 million in the metropolitan area. The city stretches across fourteen islands where Lake Mälaren flows into the Baltic Sea. Outside the city to the east, and along the coast, is the island chain of the Stockholm archipelago. The area has been settled since the Stone Age, in the 6th millennium BC, and was founded as a city in 1252 by Swedish statesman Birger Jarl. It is also the county seat of Stockholm County.

Leif Edling Swedish musician

Leif Edling is a Swedish musician, best known as the main songwriter, bass player and one of the founding members of the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass. He's the only constant member of the band since its inception to the present day. Nevertheless, since band's second reunion in 2002 Edling has been backed up again by founding rhythm guitarist Mats Björkman, who had been absent from 1997 to 2002 and was replaced by Michael Amott.



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. [2] 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 Lindh joined the band on drums, and Lars Johansson joined the band on guitars following the completion of the album.

<i>Epicus Doomicus Metallicus</i> 1986 studio album by Candlemass

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 translation rendering of Epic Doom Metal — the genre which the band helped pioneer and with which it is most commonly identified. Although he was actually a guest musician at the time of its recording, this was the only Candlemass album to feature vocalist Johan Längqvist until he joined the band, officially, in 2018.

Messiah Marcolin Swedish singer

Messiah Marcolin, also known as Eddie Marcolin, is a vocalist best known for his work in the doom metal band Candlemass. Marcolin is well known for his operatic voice and for his signature 'Doom Dance'.

<i>Nightfall</i> (Candlemass album) 1987 studio album by Candlemass

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.

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.

<i>Ancient Dreams</i> 1988 studio album by Candlemass

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.

<i>Tales of Creation</i> 1989 studio album by Candlemass

Tales of Creation is the fourth album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released in 1989 and reissued in 2001 with a bonus CD.

<i>Live</i> (Candlemass album) 1990 live album by Candlemass

Live is the first live album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass released in 1990.

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 [ citation needed ] 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 ,[ citation needed ] which was a combination of songs for a new Abstrakt Algebra CD and some new material.[ citation needed ] A year later the album From the 13th Sun was released.

Thomas Vikström Swedish singer

Thomas Vikström is a Swedish vocalist best known for working with hard rock and heavy metal bands including doom metal bands Candlemass and power metallers Stormwind. He is the son of opera singer Sven-Erik Vikström. He is also a permanent vocalist for the symphonic metal band Therion.

<i>Chapter VI</i> (album) 1992 studio album by Candlemass

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.

In 2002, the members of a past Candlemass line-up reunited. They performed some well-received live shows[ citation needed ] 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 Levén and two members of Entombed.

Remaster refers to changing the quality of the sound or of the image, or both, of previously created recordings, either audiophonic, cinematic, or videographic.

DVD Optical disc

DVD is a digital optical disc storage format invented and developed in 1995. The medium can store any kind of digital data and is widely used for software and other computer files as well as video programs watched using DVD players. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than compact discs while having the same dimensions.

Documents of Doom is a DVD release by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass. It contains their historic Live at Fryshuset performance in 1990, as well as a bonus DVD of performances from 1991 to their 2002 reunion.

Second reunion (2004–2006)

Messiah and Leif at Wacken Open Air 2005 Candlemass - wacken.jpg
Messiah and Leif at Wacken Open Air 2005

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), [3] [4] 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. [5]

Robert Lowe (musician) American musician

Robert Lowe is an American singer. He was brought into the band Solitude Aeturnus by his friend Lyle Steadham in 1988, replacing Kris Gabehardt. He is also the main lyricist on later albums. Lowe also appeared as a session singer on the first Last Chapter album. In 1996, he sings on the debut album by trio out of Arlington, TX: Liquid Sound Company: "Exploring The Psychedelic".

Solitude Aeturnus is an American epic doom metal band that was started in spring 1987 as Solitude, in Arlington, Texas. Their vocalist, Robert Lowe, was also the singer for the influential doom metal band Candlemass between 2007 and 2012. Former bassist Lyle Steadham is now guitarist and lead vocalist for the horror punk/psychobilly band Ghoultown.

<i>King of the Grey Islands</i> 2007 studio album by Candlemass

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.

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). [6] [7]

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. [8] The album was scheduled to be released on March 27, 2009, but it was delayed until April 3, 2009. [9]

In 2009, bassist Leif Edling told Soundshock that work on the next Candlemass album would likely begin before 2011. [10] 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 . [11]

On October 14, 2011, it was announced that Candlemass were signed to the Austrian label Napalm Records, who released their eleventh studio album Psalms for the Dead in June 2012. [12] [13] Despite this, bassist Leif Edling stated that the band would not split up but wanted to stop before they "get too old and start putting out half-lame albums." [14]

Mats Levén as new singer (2012–2018)

Candlemass at Party.San 2017 Candlemass Party.San Metal Open Air 2017 13.jpg
Candlemass at Party.San 2017

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. [15]

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. [16] [17] 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 had stated that he was open to recording new music with Candlemass again. [18] To coincide with the 30th anniversary of Epicus Doomicus Metallicus , Candlemass released the EP Death Thy Lover on June 3, 2016. [19] Additionally on April 29, 2016 the band released a career-spanning coffee-table book. [20] The book also contained two CDs containing the top picks by Leif Edling and Messiah Marcolin respectively, a CD with rare tracks from their early career (including the Witchcraft demo), and two DVDs with three live performances. [21]

Return of Johan Langquist (2018–present)

On September 3, 2018, Candlemass announced the return of Johan Langquist to the band after a 32 year hiatus. The band stated, "We wanted to find our way back to the roots of Candlemass, back to the soul and essence of the band. Johan Langquist is back and we hope this will give us some new energy and kickstart the heart of doom again. We don't know if it will last 10 more years or even 5, but if it will give us just another year of having fun and playing the music that we love so much, it will be a blast! The circle is closed, Johan is back!" The band also announced that they were recording a new album, which was tentatively due for release in 2019; not only will this be the first Candlemass album since 2012's Psalms for the Dead , but their first with Langquist since 1986's Epicus Doomicus Metallicus . [22] [23]

On December 6, 2018, Candlemass announced that their new album was titled The Door to Doom and will be released on February 22, 2019. It was also revealed that the album will include a guest appearance by Black Sabbath's Tony Iommi, who contributes to a guitar solo to one of the album's tracks "Astorolus - The Great Octopus". [24]




  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Klas Bergwall lead guitars
  • Matz Ekström drums, percussion
  • Johan Längqvist lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Klas Bergwall lead guitars
  • Matz Ekström drums, percussion
  • Messiah Marcolin lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Messiah Marcolin lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Messiah Marcolin lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Thomas Vikström lead vocals


  • Leif Edling bass
  • Michael Amott rhythm & lead guitars
  • Jejo Perkovic drums, percussion
  • Björn Flodkvist lead vocals
  • Carl Westholm keyboards
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Michael Amott rhythm & lead guitars
  • Jejo Perkovic drums, percussion
  • Björn Flodkvist lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats Ståhl rhythm & lead guitars
  • Jejo Perkovic drums, percussion
  • Björn Flodkvist lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Messiah Marcolin lead vocals


  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Messiah Marcolin lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Robert Lowe lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Mats Levén lead vocals
  • Leif Edling bass
  • Mats "Mappe" Björkman rhythm guitars
  • Lars Johansson lead guitars
  • Jan Lindh drums, percussion
  • Johan Längqvist lead vocals


Candlemass (band)


Related Research Articles

Abstrakt Algebra was a Swedish experimental metal band with influences from power metal and doom metal. It was founded by bassist Leif Edling in 1994, shortly after his main project Candlemass split up.

Mats Levén Swedish singer

Mats Levén is a singer. His most notable recent collaborations have been with symphonic metallers Therion and doom metallers Krux and Candlemass.

<i>Candlemass</i> (album) 2005 studio album by Candlemass

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.

<i>Dactylis Glomerata</i> 1998 studio album by Candlemass

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.

<i>Doomed for Live – Reunion 2002</i> 2003 live album by Candlemass

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<i>Death Magic Doom</i> 2009 studio album by Candlemass

Death Magic Doom is the tenth studio album by the Swedish epic doom metal band Candlemass.

<i>Lucifer Rising</i> (Candlemass EP) 2008 EP by Candlemass

Lucifer Rising is an expanded EP released by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass in 2008, on the label Nuclear Blast. Candlemass recorded two new tracks, "Lucifer Rising" and "White God," and re-recorded "Demons Gate" for this release. The collection is also primarily composed of a series of 9 live tracks recorded in Athens, Greece on their 2007 tour. Recording on the new material was completed in April 2008. The title track, "Lucifer Rising", is included as a bonus song on the digipak edition of the full-length album Death Magic Doom, which was released six months after the EP.

Metallicus may refer to:

<i>Psalms for the Dead</i> 2012 studio album by Candlemass

Psalms for the Dead is the eleventh studio album by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released on 8 June 2012. At the time of its release, the band stated that this would be their final album, though bassist and founding member Leif Edling has since retracted this claim. Psalms for the Dead is, however, the last Candlemass album recorded with singer Robert Lowe, who left the band just six days before its release.

"Solitude" is a song by the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass. It is the opening track on the band's debut studio album, Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, released in June 1986. It is one of the band's signature songs, and has been a feature of all the band's live setlists since the release of the album.

<i>The Door to Doom</i> 2019 studio album by Candlemass

The Door to Doom is the twelfth studio album by Swedish doom metal band Candlemass, released on 22 February 2019 via Napalm. It is the band's first full-length studio album since 2012's Psalms for the Dead, marking their longest gap between studio albums, and the first one to feature vocalist Johan Längqvist since 1986's Epicus Doomicus Metallicus.


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