Sabaton (band)

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Hellfest2017Sabaton 01.jpg
Sabaton at Hellfest, 2017
Background information
OriginFalun, Sweden
GenresPower metal
Years active1999–present
Past members
  • Oskar Montelius
  • Rikard Sundén
  • Richard Larsson
  • Daniel Mullback
  • Daniel Mÿhr
  • Robban Bäck
  • Thobbe Englund

Sabaton /ˈsæbətɒn/ is a Swedish power metal band from Falun. The band's main lyrical themes are based on war, historical battles, and acts of heroism[1]—the name is a reference to a sabaton, knight's foot armor. The armor and battle theme is heard in the albums Primo Victoria, Attero Dominatus, The Art of War, Coat of Arms, Carolus Rex, Heroes, and The Last Stand in which all of the songs contain these motifs, except final tracks which are tribute songs to influential heavy metal bands. An upcoming album, The Great War, was announced early April 2019, with all songs based on World War I. Lyrical content drawn from World War I, World War II and other historical conflicts is prevalent and lyrics often recite stories of heroic deeds by men, women and armies.

In December 2015, five songs by the band were added to the third external music pack for the strategy game Europa Universalis IV by Paradox

On 6 June 2016, the 72nd anniversary of D-Day, they released a music pack for the Paradox game Hearts of Iron IV with songs based on World War II, the theme of the game. They released a second on 26 January 2017.


Early career and first albums[edit]

Sabaton was formed in December 1999. After the first songs were recorded in Peter Tägtgren's studio, The Abyss, Sabaton was contacted by a couple of record labels. The band signed with the Italian label Underground Symphony, under which internationally released the promo CD Fist for Fight, a compilation consisting of material from two demo tapes recorded between 1999 and 2000, with the intention to promote forthcoming releases. In 2002, a new album was recorded. Metalizer was supposed to be distributed by Underground Symphony as the band's debut album, but after two years of waiting, during which the band held various performances across Sweden, the album was abandoned.[2][3]

Joakim Brodén playing at Global East Rock Festival in Ukraine 2010

The band returned for a second album titled Primo Victoria. They signed with Black Lodge, the metal division of the Sound Pollution record label. In early 2005, they recruited keyboardist Daniel Myhr to relieve Joakim Brodén. In early 2006, Sabaton toured in support of Edguy and DragonForce.[4] The band's third album, Attero Dominatus, was released in Europe on 28 July 2006.[5] In March 2007, Sabaton released Metalizer as a double disc together with Fist for Fight, along with the previously unreleased song "Birds of War".[6]

Sabaton performing at Norway Rock Festival in 2010
Sabaton performing at Wacken Open Air, Germany in 2015

As a follow up to Metalizer, in May 2008, Sabaton released its fourth album The Art of War, an album inspired by the influential book by Sun Tzu. The decision to base the album upon Sun Tzu's book came from the idea that in the 2000 years since the book was written, the human race has achieved many things but apart from weapon advancements, operational art, strategy, and war itself have remained basically the same.[citation needed] The album contains the singles "Cliffs of Gallipoli" and "Ghost Division". They toured Europe in 2009 as an opening act on the Hammerfall Tour.[7] After their Bloodstock performance, the band again went on tour with DragonForce, towards the end of 2009, for 18 shows in the UK.[8]

Coat of Arms[edit]

The band had hoped to begin recording the next album in October but with concerts booked and the DragonForce support tour the following month, it was pushed back. On 23 December 2009, the band announced the name of their forthcoming album. Coat of Arms contains a majority of songs about World War II including the Winter War "White Death". They announced it on their official website, and posted a link to a YouTube video containing the album art and a teaser music sample. Coat of Arms was released on 21 May 2010. The first music video, for "Uprising", was released on 1 August 2010 and features Peter Stormare. This was accompanied by a European tour. A second music video, for "Screaming Eagles", was released on 25 May.

Lineup change[edit]

Joakim Brodén in Wacken Open Air

In 2012 two-thirds of Sabaton's lineup left the band.[9] On 31 March vocalist Joakim Brodén confirmed rumors that the band would be going separate ways, with only Brodén himself and bass player Pär Sundström staying on board. Sabaton was joined by touring members Chris Rörland and Thobbe Englund on guitar, and Robban Bäck on drums. Former Sabaton guitarists Oskar Montelius and Rikard Sundén, drummer Daniel Mullback and keyboardist Daniel Mÿhr went on, together with vocalist Patrik Johansson and bassist Stefan Eriksson, to form a new band, Civil War.[10] In November 2012, drummer Robban Bäck decided to take a break from touring due to becoming a father. Snowy Shaw replaced him as touring drummer.

In the same year, Sabaton released a new concept album Carolus Rex.[11]

Sabaton performing at Rock Fest in 2014

In January 2014, the band announced the cover of their new album called Heroes, then due to be released on 16 May 2014. The album proved to be a hit and made #1 on the official Swedish album chart.[12] On 27 January the band was announced to play Download Festival in June.[13] In October 2015 performed their first concert in Japan in Loud Park.

The Last Stand[edit]

In April 2016 the band announced the cover of their new album called The Last Stand, then due to be released on 19 August 2016.[14] On 10 June 2016 the first single of the upcoming album was released, called "The Lost Battalion" and about the eponymous military unit of World War I.[15] On 25 July 2016, the band announced that guitarist Thobbe Englund had left the band.[16] Thobbe Englund played his last show with Sabaton at Sabaton Open Air 2016.

Tommy Johansson of ReinXeed was announced immediately as the new member after Englund's final show with the band.[17]

On 13 July 2017 at the Masters Of Rock festival in Vizovice a concert with symphonic orchestra was played. The songs' orchestration was made by Therion's mastermind Christofer Johnsson.

Pär Sundström stated in a 2017 interview that the group would be touring less in 2018 so they could concentrate on writing and recording their next album.[18] Joakim Brodén confirmed a 2019 release date for the still-untitled album in a September 2018 interview on MAD TV's show TV War.[19] On the 31st of December 2018, it was further confirmed in an official announcement YouTube video.

Sabaton History[edit]

On 8 January 2019, the band announced the creation of a YouTube channel called Sabaton History, a cooperation between Indy Neidell, TimeGhost History and Sabaton. The channel documents the history of the events behind Sabaton songs and the songs themselves. The channel started 7 February 2019.[20][21]

Bismarck single[edit]

On 22 of April 2019 Sabaton released a standalone single called Bismarck in a collaboration with Wargaming and their game World of Warships. The song is about the German Battleship Bismarck, one of the biggest ever built in Europe. Commissioned in August 1940, it sank in May 1941 after an intense hunt in the North Atlantic. The song is now available on all platforms. [22]

The Great War[edit]

On 2 April 2019, the band announced a new concept album about the First World War entitled The Great War. It is set for release on 19 July 2019.[23] The first single on the album is 'Fields of Verdun', which was released on 3 May.[24] On 13 June the lyric video for the most recent song, "Red Baron", was released. On 27 June the premiere of "The Great War" was released, it serving as the 3rd released song.



Current members[edit]

  • Joakim Brodénlead vocals (1999–present), keyboards (1999–2005, 2012–present)
  • Pär Sundström – bass (1999–present), backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Chris Rörland – guitars, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Hannes van Dahl – drums, backing vocals (2014–present)
  • Tommy Johansson – guitars, backing vocals (2016—present) (also known as "Puta Madre" during the Resurrection Fest 2017 and Leyendas del rock 2017 festivals in Spain)

Former members[edit]

  • Oskar Montelius – guitars, backing vocals (1999–2012)
  • Rikard Sundén – guitars, backing vocals (1999–2012)
  • Richard Larsson – drums (1999–2001)
  • Daniel Mullback – drums, backing vocals (2001–2012)
  • Daniel Mÿhr – keyboards, backing vocals (2005–2012)
  • Thobbe Englund – guitars, backing vocals (2012–2016)
  • Robban Bäck – drums (2012–2013)

Former live musicians[edit]

  • Frédéric Leclercq – rhythm guitar (2011; replaced Sundén due to his paternity leave and Rockstad:Falun 2011)
  • Udo Dirkschneider – additional vocals (2011; Rockstad:Falun 2011)
  • Chris Boltendahl – additional vocals (2011; Rockstad:Falun 2011)
  • Van Canto – backing vocals (2011; Rockstad:Falun 2011)
  • Snowy Shaw – drums (2012–2013; replaced Bäck due to his paternity leave)

Recording Timeline[edit]

Role Album
Primo Victoria
Attero Dominatus
The Art of War
Coat of Arms
Carolus Rex
The Last Stand
The Great War
Lead vocals Joakim Brodén
Guitars Oskar Montelius Chris Rörland
Rikard Sundén Thobbe Englund Tommy Johansson
Keyboards Joakim Brodén Daniel Mÿhr Joakim Brodén
Bass Pär Sundström
Drums Daniel Mullback Hannes van Dahl




Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2011 Sabaton Best Breakthrough Band Won
2012 Sabaton Metal As Fuck Won
2013 Sabaton Best Live Band Won
2018 Sabaton Best Live Band Won
Metal Hammer Awards (GER)
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2012 Sabaton Best Live Band Won
Bandit Rock Awards
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2012 Sabaton Best Swedish Group Won
2012 Sabaton Best Swedish Live Act Won
2013 Carolus Rex Best Swedish Album Won
2013 Sabaton Best Swedish Live Act Won
2013 Sabaton Best Swedish Group / Artist Won
Year Nominee / work Award Result
2013 Sabaton The Year's hard rock/metal Won


  1. ^ "Facts Over Fiction: Interview with Joakim Brodén From Sabaton". California Rock News. 13 February 2018. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
  2. ^ Sweden, Sveriges Television AB, Stockholm,. "Sabaton – med krig som tema". (in Swedish). Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  3. ^ "The BNR Metal Pages - Sabaton". Archived from the original on 2017-10-09. Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  4. ^ "SABATON To Support EDGUY, DRAGONFORCE On European Tour". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 2005-12-24. Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  5. ^ "Attero Dominatus by SABATON - info and shop at Nuclear Blast - Nuclear Blast". Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  6. ^ "Metalizer by SABATON - info and shop at Nuclear Blast - Nuclear Blast". Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  7. ^ "HAMMERFALL, SABATON, BULLET: European Tour Dates Announced". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 2008-11-10. Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  8. ^ Holmes, Mark. "Metal Discovery: Interview with Sabaton - 10th December 2009". Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  9. ^ Rose, Rustyn. "Sabaton's bassist shares 5 unknown facts about the band". AXS. AXS. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
  10. ^ "Före detta Sabaton-medlemmar lanserar Civil War". 2012.
  11. ^ "SABATON Frontman Is 'Pretty Sure' Band Will Make 'Proper' Concept Album Again In The Future". 18 December 2017. Retrieved 29 July 2018.
  12. ^ Hung, Steffen. " - Sabaton - Heroes". Retrieved 2017-10-09.
  13. ^ "Heroes album details". Blabbemouth. Retrieved 16 April 2014.
  14. ^ "New Sabaton Album: Details, Artwork, and Title!". Sabaton – Official website. 29 April 2016.
  15. ^ "First single & tracklist from THE LAST STAND revealed!". Sabaton – Official website. 10 June 2016.
  16. ^ "Thobbe Englund leaves Sabaton". Official website. 2016-07-25.
  17. ^ "SABATON - present new guitarist; more tour dates announced!". Nuclear Blast. 2016-08-23.
  18. ^ "Sabaton Bassist Says Group Will Tour Less In 2018 To Focus On Writing New Album". 15 December 2017. Retrieved 11 June 2018.
  19. ^ Reeder (1 October 2018). "SABATON To Release New Album In 2019". Metal Addicts. Retrieved 1 October 2018.
  20. ^ World War Two, Sabaton History Starts 7 February 2019, retrieved 2019-01-19
  21. ^ Sabaton, Sabaton History Channel launches 7 February 2019!, retrieved 2019-01-19
  22. ^ "Sabaton release Bismarck single". April 22, 2019.
  23. ^ Sabaton. "THIS IS THE GREAT WAR!". Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  24. ^

External links[edit]