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For other uses, see Catatonia (disambiguation).
Katatonia in 2004.jpg
Katatonia in 2004. From left to right: Jonas Renkse, Fredrik Norrman, Anders Nyström, Daniel Liljekvist and Mattias Norrman.
Background information
Also known as Decomposed, Entity, Melancholium
Origin Stockholm, Sweden
Genres Death-doom, black-doom,[1] doom metal, gothic metal, Metalgaze,[2] alternative metal
Years active 1991–1994, 1996–present
Labels Peaceville, Avantgarde Music, No Fashion, Vic
Associated acts Bloodbath, Opeth, October Tide
Website www.katatonia.com
Members Jonas Renkse
Anders Nyström
Niklas Sandin
Daniel ’Mojjo’ Moilanen
Past members Guillaume Le Huche
Fredrik "North" Norrman
Mikael Oretoft
Mattias "Kryptan" Norrman
Per "Sodomizer" Eriksson
Daniel Liljekvist

Katatonia is a Swedish heavy metal band formed in Stockholm in 1991 by Jonas Renkse (formerly known as Lord Seth) and Anders Nyström (formerly known as Blakkheim). The early Katatonia albums, along with albums by bands such as My Dying Bride, Anathema and Paradise Lost, are sometimes considered forerunners of the death/doom genre.


Dance of December Souls (1991–1995)[edit]

The early Katatonia releases, such as the EP Jhva Elohim Meth... The Revival and their debut album Dance of December Souls, are noted for the overall bleak melancholy and despair of their sound, often giving them the classification of black/doom[1] or death/doom. The band recorded For Funerals to Come in September 1994. Afterwards, Le Huche left the band. For Funerals to Come was released in 1995. The band took the whole year off due to their struggle to find a permanent lineup.

Brave Murder Day (1996–1997)[edit]

When Jonas Renkse formed October Tide in 1995 with Fredrik Norrman, he decided to revive Katatonia and had Fredrik Norrman join the band.

In 1996, Opeth's Mikael Åkerfeldt performed the growling vocals on Brave Murder Day when regular Katatonia singer (and then-drummer) Renkse became unable to perform harsh vocals properly.

Scarlet Heavens (with Primordial) was also released in 1996, but recorded in 1994 as what Renkse describes as something "we never intended to release" due to its soft sound in which Katatonia did, which was not their style.[3] During one of Katatonia's tours, Renkse fell ill and was temporarily replaced by Kenneth Englund.

In 1997, the band enlisted help from Åkerfeldt once again for Sounds of Decay. Before the release of Sounds of Decay, the band decided to record Saw You Drown, which returned to the sound of Scarlet Heavens. Meanwhile the band recorded their third studio album.

Discouraged Ones (1998)[edit]

Discouraged Ones was released in 1998 and is the first Katatonia album to feature only clean vocals. It was also the last release on which Renkse played drums, as well as the last release with Mikael Oretoft on bass guitar. Katatonia hired Anders Nordin to take up drums for Jonas, but Nordin pulled out of the band at the last minute.

Tonight's Decision (1999–2000)[edit]

Since Renkse wanted to permanently focus strictly on vocals, Katatonia enlisted the help of Dan Swanö again to drum for the 1999 album Tonight's Decision. Tired of using session members, the band decided to have a permanent lineup, so Norrman recruited his brother, Mattias Norrman, as a bassist, and Daniel Liljekvist joined the band as the drummer. In 2000, the band recorded their fifth studio album.

Last Fair Deal Gone Down (2001–2002)[edit]

In 2001, the EP Teargas, the full-length album Last Fair Deal Gone Down, and the single "Tonight's Music" were released. In 2002, the band recorded their sixth studio album.

Viva Emptiness (2003–2005)[edit]

"Ghost of the Sun" and Viva Emptiness, a single and a full-length album respectively, were released in 2003.

In 2004, the band released Brave Yester Days (the title being a play on their album Brave Murder Day), which is a double-disc release including all cuts from EPs up to Saw You Drown, selected cuts from full-length albums Brave Murder Day and Dance of December Souls, and two tracks from a compilation.

In 2005, another compilation was released called The Black Sessions. It documented later releases and includes a live DVD. The band recorded their seventh studio album.

The Great Cold Distance (2006–2008)[edit]

In 2006, the band released The Great Cold Distance, along with the accompanying singles "My Twin", "Deliberation", and "July". Their appearance at the Summer Breeze festival was filmed, and the release called Live Consternation was released in 2007.

In the time between The Great Cold Distance and Night Is the New Day, the band went into a songwriting crisis for the first time in their career. The band had booked the studio at least twice and cancelled the bookings each time. Blakkheim said that the material they had written on both occasions was not satisfactory to the band and would have been a letdown for the fans of the band. On the band's forum, Blakkheim said that it was "writer's block and pressure involved".[4]

Night Is the New Day (2009–2011)[edit]

Katatonia at Kavarna Rock Fest 2011, Bulgaria.

Katatonia's Night Is the New Day, released in 2009, received widespread critical acclaim. In December 2009, the Norrmans left Katatonia. In late 2009, Per "Sodomizer" Eriksson and Niklas Sandin joined the band for the Night Is the New Day tour.

On March 15, 2010, Katatonia released the EP The Longest Year. "Sold Heart" is the only track on this EP to be previously unreleased. The videos for "The Longest Year" and "Day & Then the Shade" were directed by Charlie Granberg and Lasse Hoile, respectively.

The band reissued Night Is the New Day and Last Fair Deal Gone Down in 2011.[5]

Katatonia played in Lebanon for the first time on September 3, 2011. The event took place at the Roman Amphitheatre in Zouk Mikael.[6] Katatonia joined Opeth's North American Heritage tour, which ran from September 2011 until November 2011.[7] Katatonia headlined Madrid Is the Dark III on December 10, 2011.[8]

The mini album For Funerals to Come was reissued on record and CD through Peaceville Records. The vinyl version was released on November 7, 2011.[9]

On December 14, 2011, Katatonia performed a special concert in Stockholm celebrating the 20th anniversary of the band. The concert featured appearances by former members of the band, along with other musicians such as Krister Linder.[10]

Dead End Kings (2011–2013)[edit]

On December 31, 2011, Katatonia announced that they would begin recording a new album in early 2012, with plans to release it before summer 2012. They are also working on a DVD titled Last Fair Day Gone Night.[11] On January 27, 2012, Katatonia announced they would head into the studio on January 30, 2012 to begin recording their ninth studio album.[12] On May 28, 2012, the band announced that their ninth studio album would be called Dead End Kings and would be released on August 27, 2012 in Europe and August 28, 2012 in the US.

Katatonia toured with The Devin Townsend Project, Paradise Lost and Stolen Babies for the North American "Epic Kings & Idols Tour" in September 2012. Katatonia and The Devin Townsend Project began the tour alternating headlining each show;[13] however, on September 13, it was decided that The Devin Townsend Project would headline the rest of the tour, starting with the September 14 show in Denver, with the only exception being the September 23 show in New York, at which Katatonia still headlined. The change was made at the request of the members of Katatonia.[citation needed]

Katatonia embarked on the "Dead Ends of Europe Tour" with Alcest and Junius in November 2012.[14] The music video for "Lethean", from Dead End Kings, was released on February 18, 2013. It was directed by Lasse Hoile.[15]

Dethroned & Uncrowned and new album for 2016 (2013–present)[edit]

In September 2013 Katatonia released a new studio album entitled Dethroned & Uncrowned. This release featured re-workings of the songs from their previous album "Dead End Kings". Dethroned & Uncrowned was partly funded by Burning Shed, and by a fan-supported direct-to-fan project featured on PledgeMusic. The crowd funding project managed to attract 190% of the target initially set out with a total of 1182 pledges.[16]

In 2014, Eriksson and Katatonia "mutually agreed to part ways" due to "a difference in views" and Eriksson's decision to live in Barcelona. Bruce Soord of The Pineapple Thief will temporarily replace Eriksson live on vocals and guitar for the band's May tour.[17] Tomas Åkvik of Nale will replace Soord on guitar in mid-2014.[18] Longtime drummer Liljekvist left the band in April 2014 on friendly terms, citing personal and financial reasons.[19] The band released on March 31, 2015 the Live album Sanctitude on DVD and CD.[20] On November 9th, the band announced a new member: Daniel ’Mojjo’ as the new permanent drummer and that the band is recording a new album expected to be released in 2016.

Band members[edit]

Anders Nystrom and Mattias Norrman



  • Guillaume Le Huche – bass (1992–1994)
  • Kristian Poock – guitars (1993)
  • Fredrik "North" Norrman – guitars (1994, 1996–2009), bass (1997, 1999)
  • Mikael Oretoft – bass (1997–1998)
  • Mattias "Kryptan" Norrman – bass (1999–2009)
  • Daniel Liljekvist – drums, percussion (1999–2014)
  • Per "Sodomizer" Eriksson – lead and rhythm guitars (2009–2014)


  • Dan Swanö – keyboards, vocals (1992–1993), studio drums (1999)
  • Mikael Åkerfeldt – live guitars (1993–1994), vocals (1996–1997)
  • Kennet Englund – live drums (1996)
  • Bruce Soord – live guitars, live vocals (2014)
  • Tomas Åkvik – live guitars (2014–present)



Main article: Katatonia discography


  1. ^ a b "Katatonia "Brave Murder Day"". Decibel Magazine. Retrieved 27 June 2012. 
  2. ^ Garry Sharpe-Young's "Definitive Guide to Metal", p. 379, "propagators of ambitious and supremely melodic doom death metal with heavy gothic elements"
  3. ^ "CoC : Katatonia : Interview : 8/12/2001". Chroniclesofchaos.com. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  4. ^ "Katatonia Status 2008". Retrieved April 18, 2008. 
  5. ^ "KATATONIA: 'Last Fair Deal', 'Night Is The New Day' Special Editions Due In April". BlabberMouth. 
  6. ^ Luca, Ana Maria. Lebanon Rocks nowlebanon.com. 2011-09-06. Retrieved on 2011-10-20.
  7. ^ Opeth Reveals Complete North American Tour Dates metalunderground.com. June 6, 2011. Retrieved on October 20, 2011.
  8. ^ Madrid is the Dark III On the Move!.......... madridisthedark.com. 2011-06-28. Retrieved on 2011-10-20.
  9. ^ Katatonia’s For Funerals To Come To Be Re-Released bravewords.com. October 4, 2011. Retrieved on October 20, 2011.
  10. ^ Katatonia to Be Rejoined by Former Bandmembers for Stockholm Show blabbermouth.net. November 15, 2011. Retrieved on November 18, 2011.
  11. ^ "happy new year". Katatonia. 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2014-02-18. 
  12. ^ Katatonia To Enter Studio on Monday Blabbermouth.net. January 27, 2012. Retrieved on April 2, 2012.
  13. ^ Ochoa, Antoinette. The Devin Townsend Project and Katatonia Announce Fall 2012 Co-Headlining Tour Dates mxdwn.com. 4 June 2012. Retrieved on 20 August 2012.
  14. ^ Katatonia, Alcest, Junius tour (Europe) lambgoat.com. 3 July 2012. Retrieved on 20 August 2012.
  15. ^ Dahlgren, Ron.Exklusiv världspremiär för Katatonia's musikvideo "Lethean" Rocknytt.net. February 18, 2013. Retrieved on February 20, 2013.
  16. ^ "Katatonia: Dethroned & Uncrowned on PledgeMusic". Pledgemusic.com. Retrieved 2015-07-02. 
  17. ^ "KATATONIA Parts Ways With Guitarist PER 'SODOMIZER' ERIKSSON". February 21, 2014. Retrieved February 21, 2014. 
  18. ^ "Fill-in Guitarist for Summer Gigs Announced". Katatonia.com. February 28, 2014. Retrieved March 5, 2014. 
  19. ^ "DANIEL LILJEKVIST LEAVES KATATONIA". April 17, 2014. Retrieved April 17, 2014. 
  20. ^ "Katatonia are preparing for the March 31st release of Sanctitude". April 17, 2014. Retrieved April 17, 2014. 
  21. ^ [1]
  22. ^ [2]

External links[edit]