Sabaton was formed back in 1999 in Falun, Sweden when the members of a band called “Aeon” reformed and rearmed for the upcoming first recording in Moon Music Studio. The founding members of Aeon: Rikard, Pär and Daniel Mullback had joined forces with Oskar and Joakim earlier during the year which had seen a few line-up changes and the guys decided on a fresh start and changed the name of the band to Sabaton. These are the same guys you see on stage today.
In 2001 the band was ready to record more material, and this time they turned to Tommy Tägtgren who were to play a part in the creation of the Sabaton sound, and together they recorded the second half of the bands demo compilation “Fist For Fight” that was released by Underground Symphony later that year.
When 2002 arrived the band returned to Abyss studios and Tommy Tägtgren to record the debut album “Metalizer” that was to be released later that year, but didn’t end up in the record stores until 5 years later.
In 2004, after countless hours of rehearsals and dozens of shows the band got tired of waiting for the release of “Metalizer” that never came and decided to take matters into their own hands.
Primo Victoria – The Battle Begins
Without the support of a record label Sabaton returned to Abyss studios and Tommy Tägtgren and recorded the album “Primo Victoria” which loosely translated means: The first victory, or: The beginning of the victory.
A fitting name, considering it represents a new beginning for the band and also marks the start of the typical war themed Sabaton lyrics.
The band signed up with the label Black Lodge later that year and in 2005 “Primo Victoria” was released
In early 2005, just before the album was released, Daniel Myhr was recruited into the band to relieve Joakim of his keyboard duties and the band was now complete.
This year saw the first Sabaton show outside of Sweden and there were many more just around the corner.
In January 2006 the band headed back into the studio for 3 weeks of intensive recording sessions with Tommy Tägtgren and recorded the album “Attero Dominatus” just before heading out on Sabaton’s first major European tour as supporting act for Edguy and Dragonforce.
Attero Dominatus – The Battle Rages On
Halfway into 2006 “Attero Dominatus” was released and the band headed out on it’s first European headline tour, and even though it wasn’t very long, it was so successful that another one was added right after the first leaving only enough time for the band to jump back to Sweden and do 3 shows with Eurovision winners Lordi before getting back on the road again.
The Attero Dominatus tour continued in Sweden, and when 2007 arrived it was followed up with another major European tour. This time Sabaton supported Therion and Grave Digger and the tour reached into territories where Sabaton had never performed before.
Metalizer – Cease-fire
As the band had been touring with Therion and Grave Digger negotiations between Black Lodge and Underground Symphony had been successfully completed and Sabaton’s debut album “Metalizer” which does not feature lyrics about war was ready for release, 5 years after it was recorded.
This time Sabaton went on a big European headlining tour called “Metalizing Europe” which didn’t go unnoticed and it was followed up by many major festival appearances throughout Europe.
The Art of War – Back in the Trenches
During late 2007 Sabaton performed little, only doing a few shows to stay in shape and 3 appearances on Helloween’s European tour to focus on the creation of the next album, “The Art of War”.
The album was based on the over 2500 years old writings of Sun Tzu, conveniently named The Art of War and the songs on the album follow the same formula and deal with the same subjects as the corresponding chapters of the text.
In January 2008 the band returned to Abyss studios, once again working with Tommy Tägtgren for the recording sessions but involved his brother Peter for the mixing process.
When the single “Cliffs of Gallipoli” was released it hit the Swedish singles chart hard and reached #1 instantly and some time later later sold gold in Sweden.
The album “The Art of War” was also a great success for the band and it received great reviews from all around the globe, it charted on #5 in Sweden and it was also honoured with a Swedish Grammy nomination.
All the hard work, quality and joy Sabaton had put into the music and the touring was finally being recognized and the band made TV appearances in several countries as well as going on the road with their biggest tour so far.
Between May 2008 and December 2009 Sabaton had: managed to perform over 160 shows in more than 20 countries, received honourable citizenships/titles from the Polish government, toured with Hammerfall and Dragonforce, and been honoured with the opportunity to play a headline show in front of 10.000 fans on the battlefield near Wizna where the battle they sing about in the song 40:1 took place exactly 70 years earlier.
Coat of Arms – Full Frontal Assault
Even though the band had been touring extensively, the creative process never ceased and the band were almost ready for the recording of their next album “Coat of Arms” in the end of 2009.
During the latter part of 2009 the band had reached out to their fans and asked them to send in ideas for battles to sing about and the fans responded with thousands of mails, and while preparing for the new album, (in the middle of a tour of course) the band took the next big step and joined the Nuclear Blast family.
The studio facilities where Sabaton recorded their first self titled demo: Moon Music Studio were abandoned at that time and the the guys in the band decided to built their own studio in the same location, thus coming back to where they started out 10 years earlier.
The final composing and the lyrics were made in December of 2009 and in January 2010 the band headed back to Abyss Studios to track the drums, this time with Peter Tägtgren behind the recording console and then returned to their own studio that by now, in typical Sabaton-esque manner was called “The Eagle’s Nest” after a joke made by the bands lightning engineer to record the rest of the album.
In early February 2010 Fredrik Nordström, assisted by Andrew Hayball mixed the album together with Sabaton in Boomtown studios, and when the mastering at Masters of Audio was complete, the final master of “Coat of Arms” was sent to Nuclear Blast.
At this moment, with most of the major European festivals booked, a huge tour announced, and a new label, Sabaton stand ready to once again storm into the fire.