Sabaton: Carolus Rex

Swedish power metallers have done themselves good this time, which is surprising for me to say because I’m not really huge fan about this band. It’s also surprising because the band completely broke up at the end of March, got a new lineup in early April, comprised of mainly touring members and have now released one of the band’s best records to date. I’ll give major props to them for this.

if you don’t know anything about Sabaton or what they’re all about, they’re a power metal band with strong thematic content dealing with the great historical wars, mainly World War I and World War II. This new record is a testament to Sweden’s golden age. In fact,  Carolus Rex is the name for Charles XII, the greatest of Swedish kings. This record will be a great history lesson to anyone who doesn’t know a lot about Sweden’s history (i’m pretty sure most of you have no clue about Sweden’s history because most of us aren’t taught that in school). Sweden actually has a very rich history and I encourage you to look beyond what you hear on this record and do some further research for yourself. There’s some really interesting stuff to learn.

Out of all of Sabaton’s previous releases, this is the first thing they’ve done that really caught my attention. While sticking to their basic power metal format, I found a lot more memorable choruses and catchier hooks and I felt that overall, the band really expressed everything they’ve been trying to express about themselves over the past decade or so, which is surprising seeing as six out of the eight band members left. This album really got me into power metal again as well as Sabaton as a band. I’m still not a huge fan of them, but this is definitely my favorite thing of theirs to date.

There’s nothing new on this record stylistically. If you know how Sabaton sound, then nothing’s changed. I just found this record to be better than most of the older stuff. Their best example of history through music yet.

Luke Helker


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