Sabaton – “Carolus Rex”

Sabaton – “Carolus Rex” (Nuclear Blast)

Majestic power metal is what Sweden’s Sabaton play and certainly rousing it is! “Carolus Rex” may the existing band’s final album but it is also their finest hour. From heart pounding vocals to operatic choirs to glorious melodies to exquisite violins, songs like ‘The Lion From the North’, ‘A Lifetime Of War’ and ‘Long Live The King’ resonate tales of glory told with passion and classical fervor. This is the stuff that military bands dream of playing and Sabaton have it drilled to perfection! Traditionally basing their material on historical wars, this time they have returned home to tell the tale of Sweden’s ‘Stormaktstiden’ – essentially how Sweden became an empire – and its last proponent, Charles XII (aka Karl XII or Carolus Rex) who spent over half his life at war. Like I said, it’s chest beating stuff and not without contention given its modern day associations with Swedish nationalist movements, but politics aside, “Carolus Rex” is as regal as its title and befitting of an empire itself!

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