Enslaved are one of those bands who've 'always been there'. Back in my younger, much-more-impressionable days, the first time I heard their Hordanes Land EP - back then, as a split with the then-untouchable Emperor - I was utterly hypnotised by their spell. The way opener 'Slaget i skogen bortenfor' begins with those frankly-wrong synths and that even-wronger rhythmic kick-in, the way it keeps surging endlessly without, well, end... it's something simply otherworldly - and it still is. But that was no flash in the pan - FAR from it. The intervening years saw Enslaved evolve from brash teenagers to stately adults, firing off one unique, challenging album after another, and yet somehow, they also lived in the shadow of those old contemporaries Emperor. It wasn't Emperor's demise and the concurrent release of 2001's Monumension where Enslaved's star truly began its ascent. They bettered it with the utterly masterful (and personal favourite) Below The Lights in 2003, and FINALLY the world started to take notice of how special these Norwegians are. But that was also the end of an era, one fraught with conflict if not dazzling creativity. What began with the proceeding Isa was the solidification of a new Enslaved lineup that carries through to this day: five albums later and the release of their brand-new In Times. Between that watershed 2004 album and now, the band have become elder statesmen of black metal and virtually bulletproof with both fans and critics.
It's a responsibility they don't take lightly; their commitment to pushing themselves on record and especially on the touring front is to be celebrated. What's perhaps most fascinating or at least most relevant about In Times is the title itself - it's both of the present, and also the past. Truly, Enslaved are living in the proverbial Now, but that present is suffused with so much of the past, much like it is for those listeners who've grown up with the band and (likely/hopefully) evolved with them just the same. For once, theirs is a tale of a band aging gracefully, and on evidence of In Times, there's no sign of them relenting any time soon. Wisened staffer John Norby takes a long look back with founding frontman Grutle Kjellson in this issue's cover story. Oh, and there's loads more great content across this issue, but I've now used up my wordcount. Oh, wait.. not... yet... but... NOW. Get reading!
FREE 17-TRACK COVERMOUNT CD FEATURING
Enslaved | Carach Angren | Frosthelm | Marduk | Helevorn | KroW | Broken Hope | Sons Of Jack Ketch | Putrid Offal | Eternal Wisdom |Dehuman | Devathorn | Corr Mhona | Shining | Der Weg Einer Freiheit | Acherontas | Khost
PROPAGANDANews and ZT sponsored show details
REGULAR FEATURESMelechesh | Dodheimsgard | Acherontas | Porta Nigra | Goat Semen | Saturnalia Temple | Code | Keep Of Kalessin | Necrowretch | Psycroptic | Manilla Road | Royal Thunder | Ufomammut | Pombagira | Jarboe + Helen Money | A Forest Of Stars | Negura Bunget + Helrunar
UNDERGROUND BLACK METAL SECTIONImago Mortis | Goat Synagogue | Gnosis
DARK ENTRIES | DARK AMBIENTSphare Sechs | Grmmsk | Alphaxone
ANGER BURNING | RAW-PUNK - CRUST - D-BEATDawn Of Humans | Long Knife | S.H.I.T.
RAPID FIREMotor Sister | Arstioir Lifsins | Kjeld | Putrid Offal | Sorcerer | Dunderbeist | Heaving Earth | Gehennah | Bio-Cancer | Ghost Bath | Helevorn | Lost Ubikyst In Apeiron | Ahamkara
SENTENCINGAudio reviews including the ZT Soundcheck and Release Of The Issue Live reviews
- LABEL PROFILE | Xtreem Music
- ON THE RACK | Enforcer
- ARTIST PROFILE | Truls Espedal
- VIEW FROM THE BUNKER | Alan 'Nemtheanga' Averill's column