The news that Mr Candlemass, Leif Edling’s side project Avatarium turned into a real band came as great news to me. After the band’s amazing self-titled debut in 2013, I wasn’t sure whether they would keep the band going or it it was just a one-off album and since that record totally floored me right off the bat, I was really happy to hear that they had decided on continuing the band with a new record. I had huge expectations on 2015’s The Girl With The Raven Mask and it’s safe to say that those expectations were met. With the honor. Because that album was just as great as the debut and with that album, Avatarium showed us that this was a real band, a force to be reckoned with and not just another Leif Edling side project. Now, Edling is part of Avatarium only as a song writer and has stepped down as the band’s bass player due to health reasons which makes the new album the first Avatarium record without Edling’s bass playing on it. It needs to be said that Edling was never part of the band as a touring member and live, singer Jennie Ann Smith, guitarist Marcus Jidell (also in Edling’s new project The Doomsday Kingdom, Soen, ex- Royal Hunt, Evergrey, Jekyll & Hide, The Ring), drummer Lars Sköld (Tiamat) and keyboardsman Carl Westholm brought in ex In Flames bass player Anders Iwers. On this album, however, Smith, Jidell and Sköld has brought in new members Mats Rydström (bass) and Rikard Nilsson (organ) to create a more stable line-up for the band – and again, expectations are sky-high. This is also the first Avatarium album where Smith and Jidell has contributed to the song writing. Exciting news indeed.