Going to see one of your favourite bands perform live isn’t something that happens every day. Having watched this particular band 2 times already in the past with its legendary first frontman, though the performances were unsatisfactory, creates second thoughts on whether to see them again or not. The fact that the band’s leader wouldn’t join the rest of the band due to health issues, create additional suspicions about this gig. Is the gig held just for the money? The venue in which the gig would take place was a strip club some years ago, so this idea doesn’t make your mood, as well. Plus, the town’s main roads were closed due to the strikes of the country’s farmers, so everything was a mess.
With many reservations in mind, we choose to go and see the Swedish gods Candlemass, with the wish and hope for none of the above to happen. We arrived early at the venue. The doors opened at 19:00 yet the concert started at 21:00. Why did that happen? There was no support act after all. The venue was great and the town needed something like that, as it can accommodate many people, the stage is viewable from every spot, it’s clean and as it turned out it has very good sound.
The time was 21:30 and the Swedish lords of doom, punctual with their appointment, took their place on stage on time. From the first notes one could understand that any hesitation about this evening would disappear! With an awesome performance and in the cries of a demented crowd, the band performed each hymn in an exceptional way. “Crystal Ball”, “Solitude”, “A Sorcerer’s Pledge”, “At the Gallow’s End”, “Bewitched”, “Mirror Mirror”, “A Cry from The Crypt” and many more kept our interest undiminished for about an hour and a half. It was one of the best concerts I have ever attended in Greece. This is partly explained by the exceptional Mats Leven who gave an amazing performance and had an excellent voice. He is certainly one of the best singers of the genre nowadays. The gig was great and you really wanted the time to freeze!
Surely we missed tracks like “Dark are the Veils of Death”, “Black Dwarf” and others, on the other hand though, when you have such a monumental discography certainly some hymns will stay out of the gig’s setlist. There should be no complaints. We experienced a perfect performance of an outstanding band!