The Doom That Came From Sweden
But some serious Doom has indeed come from Sweden. Again. I finally got my hands on the new Candlemass album – eponymously dubbed Candlemass, despite being their 11th album.
I hesitate to say their 11th album together, since Candlemass underwent some serious changes through its day. While I enjoyed vocalist Johan Lanquist in Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, I have to admit that adding Messiah Marcolin for Nightfall was the start of something heavy. Marcolin’s awesome, opera-inspired vocals were the perfect counterpoint to the plodding, driven rhythms and dark sound.
It was a real shame that Messiah Marcolin left after Tales of Creation. Marcolin’s next project, Memento Mori, was pretty good, and their album Rhymes of Lunacy filled a void after Tales of Creation. Candlemass was not so lucky, though. Tomas Vikström tried to fill Marcolin’s sizable role in Chapter VI and failed miserably. It was a disappointing end to one of my all-time favorite bands.
When I stumbled across information that Candlemass had gotten back together last year, I was really stoked. And when I realized Messiah Marcolin was back in the fold, I was numb with anticipation. Could it be? Could Candlemass be back and bring their doom once more?
Well, the release of the new Candlemass album reaffirms that Candlemass was, is and will forever be the fathers of true Doom metal. Pounding, thunderous riffs. Melancholic, contemplative lyrics. Oozing theme, atmosphere and oppressive heaviness.
I’d go so far as to say that the new Candlemass album is their second best offering – only Nightfall, for its originality and phenomenal production (despite being nearly 20 years old, produced back in 1987) inches ahead.
But the new doom is amazing. I hope Candlemass sends more doom our way in the coming years.