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Candlemass Ranked (odd but new official rank)

These guys are my first introduction to doom metal of any sort. I've been jamming metal in general since I was as young as I can remember, but never had much intrigue in this genre. I must say, throughout the course of this discog run, not only did they get me a new 5, but they also became one of my favorite bands. Here's my odd, but new official, ranking of every Candlemass LP.
Dactylis Glomerata


From the 13th Sun

God damn this album falls apart after Elephant Star. Aggressively boring, bar one song, after the first three tracks. And even those were nothing overly special

Top tracks:
1. Droid 2.Tot 3. Elephant Star

The Door To Doom

The (not so) triumphant return of Johan. He delivered my favorite C'mass vocal performance on Epicus, but he pales in comparison here. I'm not saying he's poor by any stretch, he does actually sound good, it's just not comparable to Epicus is all. As with their prior album, Psalms, they tease the listener extravagantly with the sheer quality of the opener and never find that gold again throughout the album. Although, Astorolus made a valiant effort (Iommi solo rules btw) and, as last time, every song is at least decent. This one is pretty much toe-to-toe tied with Psalms

Top tracks:
1. Splendor Demon Majesty 2. Astorolus - The Great Octopus 3. Death's Wheel

Psalms For The Dead

Prophet starts this album up remarkably, with a memorable hook, great Rob performance, and face-smashing instrumentation. Sadly, this album just never reaches that height again. That's not to say the album is bad, but it has very few memorable characteristics, coming off somewhat bland too often. Especially when stacked up to their body of work. Also, not a huge fan of the keyboards. All of these songs are at least decent, however. For whatever that's worth.

Top tracks:
1. Prophet 2. The Lights of Thebe 3. Siren Song

King of the Grey Islands

First album with Robert, and while the opener really kicks off the album on a positive note, I cant help but feel the vocals, while not poor by any metric, seem more limited than I would like on a Candlemass record, or as if they just dont always mesh, which is something that persists throughout the runtime. Now, if I understand the situation correctly, it's because the album was written with Messiah on mind (correct me if I'm wrong), but that doesn't stop it from holding the album back a bit. Still, this is a collection of quality headbangers

Top tracks:
1. Embracing the Styx 2. Emperor of the Void 3. Of Stars and Smoke

Ancient Dreams

The highs of this album are about as good as Nightfall's (especially A Cry From The Crypt), but the last two tracks just really hold this album back, straight-up threw an anchor in the sand. That, and, like with Nightfall, Messiah's vocal inflections are occasionally a tad irritating. I'm willing to chock it up to some production issues here, though, as it wasn't always the greatest in general

Top tracks:
1. A Cry From The Crypt 2. Mirror Mirror 3. Darkness in Paradise


This record starts off with a mighty roar of an opener and, mostly, keeps up the quality throughout. I do wish Messiah was brought just a tad more to the forefront in the mix, though. Still, very nice to have this after the two back-to-back disasters of Dactylis Glomerate and From the 13th Sun

Top tracks:
1. The Day and the Night 2. Black Dwarf 3. Witches

Death Magic Doom

My favorite Rob performance of the three records he's on. Also, this is my favorite comeback-era album. The first three tracks delivery back-to-back-to-back haymakers of top-tier Candlemass tuneage. The album never quite recaptures that glory on the remaining 5 songs, but they placed a mighty high bar to follow. One that, if met, could have potentially landed this record in the top 3. Instead, what we're left with is still another remarkably solid Candlemass release to add to their catalogue, which is more than okay with me.

Top tracks:
1. Hammer of Doom 2. The Bleeding Baroness 3. If I Ever Die


While I thoroughly enjoy Messiah on Tales of Creation, he does occasionally bother me on this album, though, admittedly, not to a major degree. Also, Mourner's Lament is the first boring track they put out imo, aside from the guitar solo section from 3:34-4:12, which is nice. Those reasons are what holds this album back from being at a higher spot.

Top tracks:
1. At The Gallows End 1. Dark Are The Veils of Death 1. The Well of Souls

Chapter VI

The aggregate reception of this record on Sputnik is just bewildering to me. No, this doesn't have the atmosphere or doom qualities of Epicus or Nightfall (although I would argue this record DOES have some of it's own great atmosphere that I thoroughly enjoy), but, man, does it have RIFFS. Now, obviously most Candlemass albums come chock full of great riffs, but never have I been so in love with an album's collective riffs since my first time hearing Down - NOLA. Which, to be fair, was only like 8 months ago, but my point still stands. The ones on display here are just truly stupendous to my ears. Not from a technical standpoint at all, but from the catchiness and memorability that oozes out of them, plus how well they sound just simply in conjunction with Thomas' voice. They get stuck in my head to an absurd degree. On top of that, he delivers my third favorite Candlemass vocal performance overall. This album feels tailor made for his voice in the best way possible.

Top tracks:
1. The Dying Illusion 1. Julie Laughs No More 1. The Temple of the Dead

Tales of Creation

This is the closest they came to recapturing the feeling/atmosphere of Epicus. Tales is also home to my favorite Messiah performance and has absolutely stellar production.

Top tracks:
1. Dark Reflections 1. Tears 1. A Tale of Creation

Epicus Doomicus Metallicus

The album that introduced me to C'mass. I wasn't head over hills for this record at first (probably because I was on an upper and this is mf slow), but I, thankfully, revisited this several times over the following year and a half and it grew on me each time. Johan sounds absolutely impeccable here. Some wonderful evil sorcerer bs. The songs are brooding, the production is gothic, the instrumentation is menacing and memorable (especially those riffs omfg), the atmosphere is creepy--I really cant adequately explain enough my love for this record and why it all works as well as it does. This is easily Candlemass' best record. While it is somewhat unfortunate that they released their best one first, they still had oodles of vigor and quality up through 2009, and I would certainly say their entire LP discography is worth a peep (even the less than stellar ones at least once)

Top tracks:
1. Whole tracklist; listening to just one is a crime

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