The Door to Doom — the latest album from Swedish doom lords Candlemass — is kind of a big deal. Not only is it the band’s first album to feature vocalist Johan Längqvist since the group’s 1986 classic debut album Epicus Doomicus Metallicus, but it also features a cameo from a guitarist you might have heard of: Black Sabbath’s Tony Fucking Iommi, who tears out a characteristically killer solo on the LP’s third track “Astorolus – The Great Octopus.” The Door to Doom is set to drop February 22nd, but as grim and heavy as it is, Candlemass are not all about gloom and doom — indeed, the quintet’s bassist, songwriter and bandleader Leif Edling loves all sort of non-metallic fare, including the “surprising” albums below.
CROSBY, STILLS, NASH & YOUNG – “DEJA VU”
The great first album of this legendary band. Took me about 20 years before I understood. Now I love everything about them. Even read Nash’s book. CSN is essential stuff! Some might say that Deja Vu is better, but the first one is as good in my opinion. Wonderful!
SPARKS – “KIMONO MY HOUSE”
Odd ‘n’ quirky. Special. Mad. Insane! One of the first album I bought, still love it. They were way ahead of time. Untouchable! Every song is fantastic. “This town ain’t big enough for the both of us” — what an opener!
16 HORSEPOWER – “SECRET SOUTH”
Their fourth and best. To me, they peaked right here. Emotion, dirt, passion. Dave Eugene Edwards’ homage to Joe Hills’ America. Or epitaph … Feverish songs about wayfaring strangers, cloggers, hellfire preachers, miners, the unfortunate … Great live band!
PORCUPINE TREE – “LIGHTBULB SUN”
Another album by a band at their highest level. Before they were too atmospheric, after too commercial. But with “Stupid Dream” and “Lightbulb Sun” they mixed the progressive with melody and clever arrangements. Steven Wilson is extremely talented. Here he (and the band) excelled.
BEATLES – “REVOLVER”
The start of the divine era. People might not know this, but the Beatles are the band I rank the highest next to Sabbath. There’s been a number of re-releases of albums like Sgt. Pepper, “White Album”, Abbey Road in previous years, and I’m not gonna rave about the obvious. So I would like to mention Revolver instead. Just take a listen to it and you’ll hear that they are about to become gods!