History & BiographyEnglund and Carlsson formed Evergrey. They play an accessible and progressive brand of hard rock and have toured across Europe and played a one-off in the USA in 1999. The band often works with Andy LaRocque as producer and guest musician. Recreation Day was released in March, 2003. Englund would also moonlight in Nightrage. The Inner Circle was issued in the spring of 2004 and turned out to be a concept album dealing with a religious cult. The band undertook an American tour with Iced Earth and Children Of Bodom soon thereafter. Evergrey's 2005 DVD release featured the band answering the fans' questions. Fans were asked to send emails to the band in advance. A live album was also released. Sanken Sankquist and Ralf Glaumann, who had worked with Rammstein and Britney Spears in the past, produced Monday Morning Apocalypse. Bassist Michael Håkansson left the group in mid-2006 due to his disenchantment with the band’s musical direction and soon joined Engel. Former Hammerfall bassist Fredrik Larsson was his replacement, although he would rejoin Hammerfall in March of 2007. Danhage would fill in for In Flames’ guitarist Björn Gelotte in 2006 when the latter would opt to stay home to be by his wife’s side during childbirth. Evergrey recruited former Stratovarius bassist Jari Kainulainen. The band was also negotiating with several labels for a new recording contract. The group pulled out of its planned co-headlining 2008 European tour with Brainstorm, which was scheduled to take place in March. The Swedes claimed the next album would not be ready in time for the tour. The band signed with SPV in the middle of 2008. The band’s next album was called Torn and due in August of 2008. The proposed Evergrey and Novembre tour of Europe for April, 2009 was cancelled. Instead the band became a cruise act. Jon Oliva’s Pain, Seven Witches, Evergrey, Circle II Circle and Eumeria took part in a metal cruise, Triton Power Cruise departing April 30th of 2010. The cruise was to depart at the Carnival Imagination in Miami, Florida. Circle II Circle had initially cancelled, but was now back on the ship.
According to Evergrey singer and guitarist Tom S. Englund in May of 2010, he and keyboardist Rikard Zander parted ways with guitarist Henrik Danhage and drummer Jonas Ekdahl. The latter two would focus on Deathdestruction. The pairs did not have fun any longer with each other. Elsewhere, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) would be the official support band for the next Evergrey European tour. The tour would span 16 dates Germany, Poland, Slovakia, Italy, France, Spain, Portugal and Holland. The band cancelled its Spanish and Portuguese shows following a break-in that caused the band to lose equipment and merchandise from its tour bus. Evergrey then released its eighth studio album, Glorious Collision, in February of 2011 through Steamhammer. Evergrey released a compilation called A Decade And A Half, a two-disc greatest-hits package on November 22nd, 2011 through SPV/Steamhammer. The package contained previously unreleased songs, live tracks and an extensive booklet. Twintera’s debut album, Lines, which was scheduled for release on November 16th, 2012 on logic(il)logic Records, featured Evergrey's guitarist and singer Tom S. Englund as a special guest vocalist on the song Oversight. Lion Music was releasing Pictures From A Time Traveller, the debut instrumental album from Evergrey guitarist Marcus Jidell in 2013.
Evergrey signed a deal with AFM Records. Evergrey Would release a new album, Hymns For The Broken, on September 26th, 2014 through AFM Records. The album was mixed at Hansen Studio in Ribe, Denmark by Jacob Hansen. The band was a trio now. Soon, however, the new line-up featured guitarist Henrik Danhage and drummer Jonas Ekdahl, who re-joined the band four years after leaving. I Can Do Without Love was the first solo album by Rikard Zander. It was out through ZR/Border Music in 2016. Sweden’s Evergrey was commemorating its twentieth anniversary by issuing an album called The Storm Within on September 9th 2016. US-based Redemption parted ways with Fates Warning’s singer Ray Alder and recruited Tom Englund in 2017. Evergrey announced The Atlantic as the title for its 2019 album, which was due through AFM in February. The act released its new album, entitled Escape Of The Phoenix, through AFM in February 2021. The album’s first single was called Forever Outsider. The band signed with Napalm Records and was working on a new album in 2021. Live: Before The Aftermath was a CD/DVD combo, which was filmed at a livestreamed concert in Sweden in 2020. The band would release a new album, entitled A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament), through Napalm Records on 20.05.2022. The band was scheduled to tour Europe in September. Nordic Noise 2023 was taking place in Copenhagen, Denmark in May 2023. A partial list of groups appearing included Tygers Of Pan Tang, Evergrey, Pyramaze, Steel Inferno and Eclipse. The band was booked for UK’s Manorefest 2023, but the lack of ticket sales ended that plan. Evergrey had a 30th anniversary album, which was entitled From Dark Discoveries To Heartless Portraits, through Napalm Records on December 15, 2023. It featured several live tracks, “piano” and demo versions of tracks. A limited edition came with a book about the band. Evergrey asked its fans to be a part of a forthcoming album by contributing backing vocals for a song called One Heart in 2023. Anyone interested needed to record backing vocals to a video the band had made available and to share it through firstname.lastname@example.org and be available in-person in Sweden.
EVERGREY - RECREATION DAY - INSIDEOUT
Evergrey's new album confirms once again how the Swedes are the odd men out on InsideOut Music. The band has little to do with the its progressive label-mates instead opting to focus its energies on hard rock and heavy metal. Admittedly, there is both a keyboardist in the band and involved passages reminiscent of the heavier moments of Dream Theater. These are in the minority however. Recreation Day itself is, quite ironically, a dark album. The title track's line, "life is fear and sorrow's all I know" only underscores the point. Then again, not many metal bands would feature a choir "courtesy of the Swedish Catholic Church" on its album. Then again, who knew Sweden has a Catholic Church in the first place. With good songs and a good sound the Everygrey-five are a potent bunch, and given the smooth voice of singer Tom Englund even pack some commercial potential. Play tips: The Great Deceiver, Blinded and all guitar solos on the album! - Ali "The Metallian"
EVERGREY - THE INNER CIRCLE - INSIDEOUT
In my opinion, Evergrey has gone more commercial than it needs to. The Swedes have largely abandoned the progressive scene for the soft rock one. It is no coincidence that the pomp rockers are often reminiscent of Michael Bolton vocally and musically. This will, naturally, appeal to fans of Dream Theater and Tool, but the songs - no matter how perfect technically - seem a little rudderless and were it not for the interesting lyrics and exceptional guitar solos would have suffered from a total case of the humdrums. - Ali "The Metallian"
EVERGREY - A NIGHT TO REMEMBER - INSIDEOUT
Evergrey is a band I once thought pretty highly of (i.e. circa 2003's Recreation Day) but in the intervening years I've become weary of the group's sound. Like a lot of prog-metal bands, this Swedish collective is one part Dream Theater and two-thirds shimmering, 40-something Euro rock - whenever Evergrey reaches for emotion, melodrama of adult-contemporary proportions painfully enters the equation. Despite a strong live showcase (which, I guess, is why this record exists), these Swedes still fail to live down their own sap-inspired song-writing. The band obviously can't be faulted for this (in and of itself, performing your own material is no fault) and, as expected, all that the group represents on album happens at full-tilt in the concert environment. So, in essence, if you're an Evergrey fan then you can't really go wrong picking A Night To Remember up. It's a different story for the rest of us, no doubt. - David Perri
EVERGREY - A NIGHT TO REMEMBER (DVD) - INSIDEOUT
Evergrey’s music borrows liberally from the likes of Dream Theater, '90s Metallica and Tool. Add to that a semi-gothic image and the prerequisite tempo changes and you know pretty much what anybody needs to know about Evergrey. This double-DVD, however, does provide one of the better sampling of the band's career. The first of this double-DVD is a 20 song live recording. The recording is not of the best quality as Tom Englund’s vocals comes close to James Hetfield’s macho wannabe sound and sometimes buries the instruments, but the band make impressive use of the many cameras to provide nice angles and shots of the audience and the venue.
From the more recent Blinded and End Of Your Days to older material like She Speaks To The Dead from the Solitude*Dominance*Tragedy album and Blackened Dawn from the band's debut the 90-minute set allows Evergrey to showcase their career. The second DVD sets this apart from most others because it contains six and a half hours of material but as always it is questionable whether any non fan is really interested in any of it. However, there are at least a few potentially interesting goodies, the rather cliché interview notwithstanding. Extensive backstage footage from various tours around the world, 'gear-talk' and especially a mixing school segment are interesting extras. The second DVD also includes Evergrey’s six promotional videos which confirm the aforementioned varying styles of Evergrey even more plainly than the live environment. - Anna Tergel
EVERGREY - MONDAY MORNING APOCALYPSE - INSIDEOUT
Evergrey’s transformation into a marketable pop rock band is hardly news, but Monday Morning Apocalypse perhaps hurtles the Swedish band into the end-game with 12 cuts of radio-ready smoothies ranging from soft to hard rock and some things in-between. The profusion of slow songs, sugar-coated melodies, piano interludes and cutely consumable cuts mean that Evergrey has taken a chance on a greener future. The album does not even profess to anything hard until song number four, Obedience, hesitantly makes a showing. In the meanwhile, the band has had time to parade some humour via the chorus to the song Lost, “Inside Out, Going Outside In..." The band’s record label should be proud.
Not surprisingly Monday Morning Apocalypse still harbours several heavier moments and riffs, respectable leads or segments a heavy metal fan can digest without difficulty, but the overall sound of the album is one of obvious commercialism. Be it the slow songs, the overbearing melodies or the overly dramatic constant gasps of singer Tom S. Englund the album’s content mirrors the cover mug shots of the members in American jails. - Ali “The Metallian”
EVERGREY - TORN - SPV
SPV has signed Evergrey at an opportune time. The band’s last album, Monday Morning Apocalypse, was a disappointing soft outing that probably made the Swedes’ departure from Inside Out Music just a tad easier for the former label’s proprietors. Two years on Evergrey has returned with an almost new lease on life. The new album is adorned by a fascinating work of art that is bleak in its brown cover, yet refreshingly harder and louder than before. Tom S. Englund’s affected voice is occasionally repetitious and too pompous - although a definite signature of the group’s delivery - but the harsher tones and bigger riffs give this album a metallic credibility than seemed increasingly absent or distant in the past. The mix of accustomed melody and powerful riffs and extended lead guitars strikes a better balance than at first imagined. Even the album’s closing song, These Scars, with its synthesizers and female crooning cannot do much damage. For whatever reason parts of the album bring Pain Of Salvation to mind, but Torn has exiled the keyboards to the farthest corners of the songs and album and become a more direct offering that does a good job of representing the various strengths of Evergrey. - Ali “The Metallian”