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Candlemass - Psalms For The Dead - 90%

Vishaalmetal666, July 7th, 2012

With the start of yet another month of pure Metal taking us on a roller coaster ride, it is time we bid farewell to one of the greats, who steered this ride and touched our hearts with their music. Candlemass, the Black Sabbath of Doom Metal, have now released their final studio album Psalms for the Dead, waving their fans a final goodbye in style! This album is a perfect example of how a band should end their career in the studio. From sheer evil and diabolic riffs too some face melting solos, the album has it all! But sadly, just when Robert Lowe began to hit the right note to fit in the band through this album, he was announced no longer a part of the band quite recently.

The opening track, “Prophet” was a great start to the album with the typical elements of doom embedded in it. This makes you crave for some more and as you move to the next track, you will be greeted with a tweak of a surprise with “Dancing in the Temple”. This song seemed to deviate slightly from their heavy, slow and haunting sound to more of a slow power metal inclination. This song sets you right into the mood for more of Candlemass, with 3 blistering solos. Noticeably, almost every song treats you with some diverse solos by Lars Johansson. Per Wiberg (ex-Opeth) has added his own spices to this well cooked piece of art with a beautiful solo in the “Siren Song” on the keys.

Every song in the album has a different feel to it. Like, “Killing of the Sun” gives you a total Black Sabbath feel to your ears. Not to forget, Leif Edling has done a fabulous job on the bass with some hot and heavy portions in “Black as Time”. I certainly expected some intricate acoustic guitar magic like that of the most well-known song of the band, “Solitude”, from their first album Epicus Doomicus Metallicus. But setting that apart, this album seems flawless, and yet another masterpiece!

To choose the 3 best tracks from the album, I’d say my number one choice would be “The Lights of Thebe”, because in this one, although the band maintains their reputation of sounding evil, it takes a different turn with some lovely symphony and a sweet solo with an oriental feel to it. At second place would be, “Dancing in the Temple” because of the downpour of three solos and the slight deviation from the typical sound they usually play. Lastly, I’d choose the track “Psalms for the Dead” that matches its title to that of the album, because of the very impressive strong structure! The dual solo song is well fitted with some commendable transitions and an outro that will surely leave you in a trance, at the end.

I always felt as long as Candlemass will exist, the standard of doom metal will remain high. Without much ado, I’ll conclude by saying that this album was sick enough to be called legendary and is a perfect full stop as they fade away from the limelight, leaving their legacy behind. For me, Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, Nightfall and now Psalms for the Dead stand at the top of my list of best doom metal albums ever made and Candlemass will remain one of the biggest influences for this genre. Even though the sub-division of this doom metal style does not have many bands that would make it proud, Candlemass is enough, and this album shows why. Now, solely a touring band, they have replaced Robert Lowe with Mats Leven on the vocals. Buy the album, irrespective of what sub-genre of metal you prefer because this album is the pinnacle of sheer mastery.

Original review by me on :
http://www.metalwani.com/2012/06/review-candlemass-psalms-for-dead.html