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Rob Lowe – Vocals for Candlemass and Solitude Aeturnus

Date: 06/25/07
Interviewed By: Rich Catino



1. You recently became the singer for Candlemass correct?

ROB: Yeah it happened in January.

2. Are you still the singer of Solitude Aeturnus and will you continue to?

ROB: Yeah I am still part of the band we are actually working on some new material for the next record. Hopefully next year it will be out.

3. Did you get to contribute anything to the new Candlemass album “King of the Grey Islands”?

ROB: No I didn’t because when I jumped on board everything was already recorded.

4. Did you get to do what you wanted with the vocals or did they have a specific approach they wanted you to take?

ROB: No they pretty much gave me free reign. What happened was their bass player Leif Edling would send me stuff here in Texas and I would get it back to him in Sweden and he would say nay or ye to my ideas.

5. So were you a fan of Candlemass before joining the band?

ROB: O yeah definitely. I was into “Epicus Doomicus Metallicus” when it first came out in, what was it like 1986, and I followed them throughout the years all the way up through the last one the white album.

6. How would you compare the new record you sing on “King of the Grey Islands” with the older ones?

ROB: I think there is a progression of sorts just like how the self titled white one was also a progression from earlier Candlemass to newer. I would say it’s a mixture of the older doomy heavier riffs with maybe some more of an aggressive nature like what the white album had. Not so much up tempo but more aggressive say. I mean you are gonna know its Candlemass there’s no mistaken that.

7. Is “King of the Grey Islands” out yet in the States?

ROB: Well I thought it was coming out on June 22 but I looked at the Nuclear Blast site and it is showing for July 17th so I don’t know.

8. How has the reaction been from both the fans and critics with you as the new singer?

ROB: As much as I keep up with the gossip online, which is very little, they are saying they picked the right guy to replace Messiah and I don’t disagree with that. And from the press the people I have spoke to the response was good on their end. You know when it comes to replacing a singer that’s the first thing people are all up in arms about, and I’m guilty of that too. Like with the Ozzy Dio thing in Sabbath.

9.Well you come from Solitude Aeturnus which has a similar musical career to Candlemass so it can’t be that different with you singing?

ROB: Exactly, our careers have been paralleled for some time, there’s always the comparisons between the two bands. And I think it makes it easier for the fans to be more accepting of me now singing for Candlemass.

10. If both bands are so similar then what do you think makes Candlemass different from Solitude?

ROB: I think its definitely Leif’s songwriting style for Candlemass, our tone and sound in Solitude is different from Candlemass and then you have Messiah’s vocals which is a large part of their unique sound as well.

11. Can you tell us anything about the title of the new album “King of the Grey Islands” and the artwork?

ROB: As far as I can tell, and this my own opinion, the skull and the crown represents a dead king of some sorts, the “King of the Grey Islands” is Leif’s thoughts on society and the way things are. The themes around the whole thing surrounds the king’s own realm, like a persons own realm in a psychotic sense to where in the end its about suicide basically. Overall its about metaphor for a king and how nothing is what it should be or what you expect it to be be and in the end there is only one solution.

12. When you do write lyrics, is there a specific issue or topic you like to address?

ROB: Well as far as the new Candlemass record I had nothing to do with those but I like to write from own personal experiences. I don’t have any themes in my writing, like on “Alone” (Solitude Aeturnus last album) all those lyrics are very personal and come from an introspective place. They are not from an outside source unless that outside source is the reason for whatever misery I am experiencing.

13. Do you think you will be able to do the same type of writing on the next Candlemass album?

ROB: I don’t really know we haven’t discussed that yet. Traditionally Leif (bass) does the lyric writing.

14. Have you performed with the band yet and if so how did that go?

ROB: Yeah I did. Back in March they had a twentieth year reunion show with former singers Johan Lanquist and Tomas Vikstrom and even Tony Martin (former Black Sabbath singer). And I did four songs with them as a introduction. The response was great we did “Solitude” from “Epicus Doomicus Metallicus”, “Samarithan” from “Nightfall”, “Mirror Mirror” from “Ancient Dreams” you know that classic old stuff and people really seemed to dig it.

15. What are some of your personal favorite song by Candlemass and the ones you would like to perform live?

ROB: Well “Samarithan” is one of my all time favorites, the rest of the stuff really all of it is all fine with me but I bet we will do all the classics like “Solitude”, “Gallows End”, “A Sorcerers Pledge”, “Under the Oak” hell who wouldn’t want to do those songs if you’re a Candlemass fan. And then I’m sure we will do a couple from the white record which has some great stuff on it.

16. It has been a while since Candlemass toured the States. Any plans to do so behind this new album?

ROB: There is talk but it all depends on the response to the new album and how well it sells.

17. If you had to pick your top five all time favorite doom albums of all time what would they be?

ROB: Well lets see hear it depends I guess because there are so many genres out there and breaks off into this incredible oak tree of branches. But if I had to choose I would have to say “Nightfall” from Candlemass, definitely the first Trouble album and “The Skull”, Black Sabbath “Master of Reality”, ummm Cathedral “Carnival Bizarre”, see now you got me thinking, o Count Raven “High on Infinity” they are another Swedish band.

18. What if you had to choose a Solitude Aeturnus record?

ROB: Obviously “Alone” which is the most recent release simply because its new and its heavier. “Adagio” is my favorite because its very heavy and doomy, more eclectic. “Through the Darkest Hour” was the first album we came out with after “Beyond the Crimson Horizon” that really changed the direction for us where it was less progressive Power Metal and I changed my overall vocal style.

19. Is Candlemass doing some of the European summer festivals?

ROB: Yeah we doing one Gothenburg, Ireland and Berlin and then one in Finland. I have never played any of these festivals yet so I am looking forward to them. I am also flying back and forth setting up some dates for Solitude in the Texas area. Maybe in Sept/Oct there will be a European Candlemass tour.

20. Ever considered doing a Candlemass/Solitude Aeturnus tour?

ROB: Hahaha you know that has been talked and joked about. I mean I would love to but that would just be too much for my voice. Maybe a one off or something that would work but a tour I think just would be too much on my voice. That’s like over two hours of singing.

21. Working on any side projects?

ROB: Yeah as a matter a fact I just finished up all the work on a project called Concept of God. It’s a project that me, Steve Moseley from Solitude, and John Covington (former Solitude drummer) have been working on. It’s a mix between Solitude Aeturnus and pure heavy metal. If you go to www.eternalsolitude.com the Solitude Aeturnus website, I have a clip up in the media area. Like I said I just got done mastering yesterday and we are hoping to get it out the end of the year. Its gonna be on Massacre Records.

Official website: www.candlemass.se

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