CHAPTER VI (1992)
Music For Nations
LP/CD MFN 128
Released may 25
Info: The cover didn’t come out right. The correct cover can be seen on the Peaceville cd reissues.
The Dying Illusion
Julie Laughs No More
Where the Runes Still Speak
The Ebony Throne
Temple of the Dead
The End of Pain
“Chapter VI” was a result of a very chaotic period in the bands carrere. After the recording of the “Live” album things wasn’t well in Candlemass. The manager had left, sick of all the problems with the band. Nothing worked, they refused to tour (if the money wasn’t right) and different bullshit regarding monetary matters were flying around – both within the band and in public. Yes, it was nasty. Top that with a bunch of people totally unwilling to listen to good advice and you have the picture. He left. Leif Edling soon understood the full meaning of what it meant being the manager for Candlemass as he took over during a six month period spring – fall 1990. Finding himself in an completely impossible situation he knew it was time to split up. A lot of harsh words were said and Candlemass went separate ways even before the “Live” album was released.
Leif and Messiah started to rehearse with Mike Wead and a couple of friends in the autumn/winter in something that later would turn into Abstrakt Algebra. One of the songs was called “The night of the witch”. A number that was featured on tour in America and later renamed “Dying illusion”. Upcoming tours, finance and one more contracted record got recordlabel MFN to try to save the day. Dave Constable,the ex-manager, was contacted and a campaign of persuation began. After several “goodwill” gestures from most parts a big meeting was held at Hard Rock Café Stockholm. Leif and the others agreed to continue. Fantastic gigs in England, Poland and USA did help the overall situation, but Candlemass was still a band in turmoil.
During the rehearsals for “Chapter VI” in the summer of ’91 the shit really hit the fan. Messiah refused to listen to us. We told him not to smash micstands during the UStour because we had to pay for them ourselves. He told us to fuck off! In England he went with the support act to be able to watch videos in their tourbus, even though we told him not to. It was during a blizzard in northern England and we almost had to cancel our show as well when they hit the ditch. Fuck off, was the answer! When we tried out material for “Chapter VI” we wanted him to sing rawer and turn off his vibrato a bit like he did on stage. He told us to fuck off again I know you can’t replace me, was his comment. So he was replaced. Leif looks tired when he thinks back on this rather painful part of the bands history. If Messiah left us or got the boot is difficult to say, really. He gave us the middle finger and took off.
What can be said is that Candlemass found new inspiration with the blond viking Thomas Vikström. Leif heard him do a perfect Painkiller at a club and knew he would be good. As a singer he could imitate anyone. Brilliant covers of Kiss and Queen with Thomas behind the microphone in full make-up are classic moments of the Stockholm clubscene. Thomas Vikström sang “Dying illusion”, “The runes still speak” and “Ebony throne” with confident. He fitted right in, giving Candlemass another year in the sun – this time in Sweden for the very first time. Before, Candlemass would tour England at least twice with every album, Germany, Holland and the States. Now the band toured Sweden; clubs, icehalls, festivals. And even the girls showed up. If it was because of Thomas or the more mainstream touch together with good media interest – “Dying illusion” and “Ebony throne” were frequently played on the radio, Candlemass was even nominated for a grammy with “Chapter VI” – is hard to say, but the guys had a great time. And the gigs were phenomenal. Packed venues in Göteborg, Uddevalla, Borlänge, Umeå;, – from south to north. A triumph and a worthy final to the bands carrere.
Especially some Stockholm nights were incredible. One classic is the Elm Street gig with Europes Ian Hauglan on the drums when Jan was sick. An overenthusiastic crowd nearly wrecked the place and Ian was chocked. He had never seen anything like it! (Makes you wonder eh??). Two videos were recorded; “The Dying illusion” and “Julie laughs no more”, featured hordes of young gorgeous swedish models. The videos were sadly banned from the MTV because of alcohol and drug intake. These girls showed up at gigs and parties around Stockholm during that magic summer of 1992, giving an extra flair to a great period for the band.
Leif never really liked “Chapter VI”, and didn’t give his best in the songwriting department (just listen to the Abstrakt Algebra record and you will understand. A lot of the material was written before “Chapter VI”, Leif kept the best stuff for what he knew would come).
If I could make things undone “Chapter VI” would never had been released, he says. That might be a bit radical, but it is certainly not the best thing bearing the name Candlemass. Not by a long shot. But, knowing the circumstances… understandable.