According to Blabbermouth.net, legendary Swedish doom metallers Candlemass have released the following statement:
"We are sorry to inform you that Robert Lowe is no longer the singer for Candlemass. It has been a very difficult decision for the band and has mainly to do with the quality of the live performances.
"For the upcoming shows, Robert will be replaced with Mats Levén [Yngwie Malmsteen, Therion, Treat, Adagio, At Vance, Krux], longtime friend of the band. We are convinced this will work out just great.
"The band is currently rehearsing new and old songs with Mats and we know that nobody attending the gigs at Debaser Slussen, Metaltown, Borås or Southern Discomfort will be disappointed.
"Bring you earplugs... It will be hard, massive and loud!
"Keyboard player Per Wiberg [Opeth, Spiritual Beggars] is also joining Candlemass onstage for the live shows."
Lowe - who is still a member of Solitude Aeternus - joined Candlemass in January 2007 and sang on the band's last three studio albums: "King Of The Grey Islands" (2007), "Death Magic Doom" (2009) and "Psalms For The Dead" (2012).
Candlemass will release its 11th and final album, "Psalms For The Dead", on June 8 via Napalm Records. A limited-edition seven-inch vinyl single contaning two album tracks -"Dancing In The Temple Of The Mad Queen Bee" and "The Killing Of The Sun" - preceded the full-length effort on April 13.
Candlemass will celebrate the release of the new album with June 5 performance at Debaser Slussen in Stockholm, Sweden. The band will play a full set that will contain songs from the new CD, a few surprises and some classics.
"Psalms For The Dead" track listing:
02. The Sound Of Dying Demons
03. Dancing In The Temple (Of The Mad Queen Bee)
05. The Lights Of Thebe
06. Psalms For The Dead
07. The Killing Of The Sun
08. Siren Song
09. Black As Time
10. Sadness Runs Deep (7" bonus single)
11. Beneath The Fire (7" bonus single)
"This record represents everything that is Candlemass," Leif Edling states. "It is big, fat, epic and heavy, and it’s also metal as f--k! We couldn't have done a better album! It's our last one and we put just all we had into it. 'Psalms For The Dead' is an album about the presence and absence of time, false prophets and inner demons... Hymns, regret and farewell. Let there be doom!"
Despite the fact that "Psalms For The Dead" is being billed as Candlemass' final studio album, Edling told Terrorizer magazine in a recent interview that the group is not planning on hanging it up anytime soon.
"We're not splitting up," he said. "Yes, this is to be our last album, but we don't plan to disappear from the scene for quite awhile. We will tour this year, hopefully the next one as well, and then there's our upcoming 30th anniversary. So plenty more doom to come! It's just that we want to stop before we get too old and start putting out half-lame albums. Instead, we'll slowly fade away into the sunset with our dignity intact. We're not young anymore. Actually, some of the stuff I've been writing for this album ism in fact, about saying goodbye. It's a bit psalm-like in parts and has got a big epic vibe."
He added, "I have got a very good feeling about this album. It's so metal, so heavy, so doomy, so epic.. It's f--king colossal! I think this will turn out as good as [2009's] 'Death Magic Doom', something I thought would be impossible."