Magnus Karlsson (musician)

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Magnus Karlsson
Born26 November 1973 (1973-11-26) (age 46)
GenresHeavy metal, hard rock, power metal, symphonic metal
InstrumentsGuitar, bass, keyboards, banjo, accordion, vocals
Years active1989–present
LabelsFrontiers Records
Associated actsPrimal Fear
The Ferrymen
Bob Catley
Last Tribe
Midnight Sun

Magnus Karlsson (born 26 November 1973) is a Swedish heavy metal songwriter, guitarist, multi-instrumentalist and producer. He is currently a session musician and songwriter of the band Primal Fear, as well as for other projects like his own Free Fall.


Magnus attended school to study classical guitar when he was 10 years old. Later on he was very much into "The New Wave of British Heavy Metal" of bands such as Iron Maiden, Dio, Judas Priest and Black Sabbath. His influences as a guitarist were Steve Morse, Steve Vai and Allan Holdsworth. He has played in various metal and fusion bands early on and developed a style which mixes metal and folk music.[1]

His first critically acclaimed musical project was with the band Last Tribe, which has released three full-length albums.

In 2004, Magnus started to work as a session musician in a project put together by Frontiers Records, which had the intention to have two acclaimed heavy metal vocalists singing together as a duet. The project ended up featuring powerhouse vocalists Russell Allen (Symphony X) and Jørn Lande (ex-Masterplan) and was simply called Allen/Lande. The project released its first three albums with all music and the majority of lyrics written by Magnus Karlsson, featuring a variety of hard rock and heavy metal songs with a progressive metal touch.

In the same year he also started to write music for a project with singer Tony Harnell (TNT), drummer John Macaluso (Ark, TNT, Yngwie Malmsteen) and bassist Fabrizio Grossi (Steve Vai) that would later on become the band Starbreaker.

In 2008, he worked with Magnum vocalist Bob Catley on his solo album Immortal writing all the songs himself .

The same year, Magnus joined German metal band Primal Fear making a big contribution to the band's songwriting. He also teamed up with the band's bassist and leader Mat Sinner to work in a number of projects released by Frontiers Records, such as Kiske/Somerville (another singer-duet project, featuring ex-Helloween singer Michael Kiske and American singer and vocal coach Amanda Somerville) and the first solo album by Primal Fear frontman Ralf Scheepers.

In 2013 it was announced that Magnus Karlsson would release his first solo musical project called Free Fall on 11 June in North America and 14 June in Europe by Frontiers Records. It features many guest singers who worked with Magnus before, including Russell Allen, Ralf Scheepers, Tony Harnell, Rickard Bengtsson (former bandmate from Last Tribe), Mark Boals (who worked with Magnus in the project The Codex), Mike Andersson (who worked with Magnus in the project Planet Alliance) and other guests like David Readman (Pink Cream 69, Voodoo Circle), Rick Altzi (At Vance, Masterplan) and Herman Saming (A.C.T). Magnus also sings three tracks on the album himself and Daniel Flores (who also worked with Magnus in the project The Codex) recorded the drums.[2]

Magnus also wrote songs for the melodic hard rock project Place Vendome, 'My Guardian Angel' from the album Streets of Fire, 'Break Out' from the album Thunder in the Distance and 'Falling Star' from the album Close to the Sun.

The second Free Fall album has been announced to be released in 2015. It's called Kingdom of Rock and features the following guests: Jørn Lande, Tony Martin (ex-Black Sabbath), Joe Lynn Turner (ex-Rainbow, ex-Deep Purple), Jakob Samuel (The Poodles, also worked with Magnus in the band Midnight Sun), Harry Hess (Harem Scarem), Rebecca De La Moite, and once again Tony Harnell, Rick Altzi and David Readman, the last three also sang in the first album. Jaime Salazar (who worked with Magnus on bands Last Tribe, Planet Alliance, Midnight Sun and the Allen/Lande project) recorded the drums.[3] The album's release date is 6 November 2015.[4]

In 2017, it was announced another new project featuring songwriting, production and playing from Magnus Karlsson called The Ferrymen. The self-titled album also features drummer Mike Terrana (Vision Divine, Avalanch) and singer Ronnie Romero (Lords of Black, Rainbow).[5]

In 2018, Magnus and Tony Harnell reunited to record the third album of Starbreaker which is titled Dysphoria and was released on January 25, 2019. It also features bassist Jonni Lightfoot and drummer Anders Köllerfors.[6]


Magnus Karlsson's Free Fall[edit]

Midnight Sun[edit]

  • Nemesis (1999)
  • Metal Machine (2001)

Last Tribe[edit]

  • The Ritual (2001)
  • Witch Dance (2002)
  • The Uncrowned (2003)



Tony O'Hora[edit]

  • Escape into the Sun (2006)


  • Glass of Beer (2006)

Planet Alliance[edit]

  • Planet Alliance (2006)

The Codex[edit]

  • The Codex (2007)

Bob Catley[edit]

Primal Fear[edit]

Place Vendome[edit]


Ralf Scheepers[edit]

Kimball Jamison[edit]

  • Kimball Jamison (2011)


  • Awakening (2012)

The Ferrymen[edit]

  • The Ferrymen (2017)
  • A New Evil (2019)



  1. ^ "S-Rock – Don'T Miss It!". March 21, 2002. Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved 2014-08-14.
  2. ^ "Frontiers". Retrieved 2014-08-14.
  3. ^ "Singers on the next Free Fall". Magnus Karlsson Facebook Page. Retrieved 2015-06-13.
  4. ^ "MAGNUS KARLSSON'S FREEFALL, "Kingdom Of Rock"". Facebook. Retrieved 2015-08-31.
  5. ^ "THE FERRYMEN's self-titled debut album". Facebook. Retrieved 2017-04-06.
  6. ^ "STARBREAKER To Release 'Dysphoria' Album In January; 'Pure Evil' Single Available". Blabbermouth. Retrieved 2018-11-15.

External links[edit]