Live Report: Candlemass

Estimated reading time: 6 minute(s)

Club Quattro, Tokyo, Japan
January 26, 2024

After having complained about the layout of this cramped and poorly-designed venue in past reviews, I have to admit it was a sight for sore eyes for me on this night after having been so long away from live music. With no opening act, Candelmass started its 90-minute show on time and moved smoothly through a set list that heavily favored the first two albums, broken up only by a couple songs from Ancient Dreams and one from their new album. Johan Längqvist is a charismatic performer with a powerful voice who, while not Messiah Marcolin, nonetheless is still able to handle the vocals as he had on Candelmass’s first album. A smiling Leif Edling seemed returned to health but also appeared to have accepted a job as an instructor at Hogwarts.

Lars Johansson’s soloing remains timeless and beautiful. Throughout the evening, two thoughts stayed with me. First, doom metal both ages gracefully and allows the aged to play it gracefully, so it is a great genre of metal for musicians who want to have long careers as live performers. Second, what a surreal experience it was to be enjoying a performance in 2024 by essentially the same group of musicians that released Epicus Doomicus Metallicus in 1986 (and Jan Linh joined the band shortly after that album was released). Forty years in one night. Just amazing!

Set List

  • Intro: Marche Funebre (Nightfall)
  1. Mirror Mirror (Ancient Dreams)
  2. Bewitched (Nightfall)
  3. Under the Oak (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus)
  4. Bearer of Pain (Ancient Dreams)
  5. Dark Are the Veils of Death (Nightfall)
  6. Samarithan (Nightfall)
  7. Sweet Evil Sun (Sweet Evil Sun)
  8. Crystal Ball (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus)
  9. Demon’s Gate (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus)
  • Encore:
  1. The Well of Souls (Nightfall)
  2. A Sorcerer’s Pledge (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus)
  3. Solitude (Epicus Doomicus Metallicus)

Band: Leif Edling, bass; Mats Björkman, guitar; Jan Lindh, drums; Lars Johansson, guitar; Johan Längqvist, vocals

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