As Peaceville Records are mostly in the business of re-releases these days, it does not come as a big surprise that they also have scooped up the rights for at least parts of the back catalogue of Swedish cult Doomers CANDLEMASS with bonus CD. Now I have originally reviewed “Ancient Dreams” already, same deal goes for “Tales Of Creation”, hence the same intro for both reviews, so I will refer you to my original review (which you can read right >>> here <<<), as it does not really make sense to write a second review about the same CD and just let you know about the bonus CD.
And said bonus CD contains four previously unreleased live versions of songs off the album and one 23 minute interview. The sound quality of the live songs is a little hit and miss, overall not too bad, but Messiah’s voice sounds a little strained here and there, while in some spots the sound itself gets rather muddy. The song quality per se, though, is undisputable as most of the songs the Swedes have crafted cannot be described as anything different than classics in the Doom genre that were an immense influence on countless bands, even though many tried to achieve the same majesty in their songs, yet inevitably failed more or less miserably. The interview seems to hail from around the same time period as the original release of the album, or rather a little later, as the band already talks about their gig at the Dynamo festival (and for some reason Big Macs stored away in Messiah’s jacket...don’t ask, just believe me when I say that from my own experience with him this can be absolutely true!), and is both informative and entertaining, which is the way it is supposed to be, isn’t it?
So...if you read that this is a re-release and because you already have the original you think that you don’t need this, you might want to think again, because not only do you get a pretty extensive bonus CD (the interview alone is almost 25 minutes long), but also equally extensive liner notes by Leif Edling, which always are interesting to read, so depending on the price this double-pack is going to hit the stores at, it might still be worth exploring and if you don’t have the original yet, then there is no way you can pass this one up!
(Online June 22, 2008)