Nocturnal Rites Biography
Last updated: 03/22/2003 05:12:57 AM
In 1990 guitarist/vocalist Fredrik Mannberg formed a band called Necronomic. But while experiencing several line-up changes and members unwilling to work hard, they later broke up. By the end of 1990, the only two remaining members (Fredrik and drummer Tommy Eriksson) reformed the band, now serving as three piece with newly recruited bassist Nils Eriksson and under the monicker of Nocturnal Rites.
In '91 the band made their first, and still only official, demo recording. A four track release called "The Obscure". It attracted a fair share of independet label interest, but the band decided to wait for something better. While writing material for what came to be a two track promo recording, they found themselves having drifted away from the "mainstream" death metal, towards a more melodic and harmonic oriented sound. This new approch, again, attracted some label attention. Still, nothing the band would be willing to sign. Around this time drummer Tommy Eriksson left the band and was replaced by Ulf Andersson. The band also added a second guitarist, Mikael Söderström.
Through 1993 the band continued writing material and by this time their sound had come to grow into traditional heavy metal, influenced by the likes of Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. The band describes this transison as a normal continuance on what they started on in 1992.
By the fall/end of ’93 they felt they had gathered enough good material for another recording. This recording, however, made the band realized Fredrik’s vocals didn’t quite fit their innovated sound. So they felt they had to recruit a proper, melodic singer. Fredrik’s replacement was found in Anders Zackrisson, a talented and experienced vocalist, formerly of Umea’s Gotham City. Even though 93’s recording didn’t represent the band’s sound with newly recruited Zackrisson, they felt the songs had potential, and it was sent out to various labels. The tape caught swedish label Dark Age’s attention. A deal was worked out and by the end of 1994 the band signed it. Dark Age’s intention was always to license the album to a bigger label with better funds and distribution. The partner was found in Megarock Records and finally Nocturnal Rites debut album "In a Time of Blood and Fire" (1995) was launched upon the world. It was crtically a big sucess but, unfortunately, due to some distribution problems and poor efforts in promoting the album, it never became the sucess it potentially could have been.
While writing for a follow-up, guitarist Mikael Söderström decided to leave the band and was replaced by Nils Norberg. A perfect addition to the band, equally talented as musician and songwriter. In late 1997 the band’s second CD, "Tales of Mystery and Imagination" (1997/1998) was released in Japan. But since Megarock didn’t please Dark Age, they shopped around for a better deal in Europe. Ultimately, the band was sold to Century Media and the album was finally released in March 1998. At this point, a whole new era was to begin fo the band.
After touring Europe in support of the "Tales..." album, the band came back with a newfound confidence to write and record its third offering, the critically acclaimed "The Sacred Talisman" (1999). It showed a more mature and able side of the band, and also premiered a new addition to the rythm section, drummer Owe Lingvall. A mere two weeks after the album saw the light of day, the boys joined Nevermore and Lefay for an intense, full scale european tour.
When all touring duties were round up for "The Sacred Talisman", the band and vocalist Anders Zackrisson felt they had grown apart. This led to the departure of Anders but quite quickly a replacement was found in local singer and former bandmate of Owe's, Jonny Lindqvist. A multi talented and experienced vocalist whose voice sounded nothing like Anders'. This, inevitably, made the band broaden their horizons as songwriters and on "Afterlife" (2000) they ended up showing a new and fresh side of Nocturnal Rites. The fans and media welcomed Jonny with open arms and the the band prooved they had come to be an even stronger live force with Jonny as fronman.
After touring Europe with Iron Savior, doing several festivals and one-off shows in Sweden, the band started working on material for what we now know as "Shadowland" (2002). Nocturnal Rites will be playing festivals during the summer/fall and will start touring Europe and possibly the world later on this year.