Darkness reigns triumphant as the great rebellion against commercial music and the trained ear to fine-tuned recording - or so says the thesis of Black Metal. With the Extreme Metal notion of distorted guitars, a great atmospheric evil is cast upon the world. It is, by definition, dark and experimental. Death Metal is the raw aggressive power crafted into well recorded precision. The raw energy of Black Metal lends itself to an avant garde approach to music. Enslaved are one amongst many of the great pioneers of this creative force upon the dark parts of humanity’s soul.
Enter E, Enslaved’s most recent effort upon the world. In Times was Enslaved pushing forward in a way that made extreme metal great within 2015 and Enslaved show no signs of stopping. E is crafted with a tendency to follow a witches chant upon a cultists ears. The Black Metal screeches are with hypnotic chants that actually feel like a commercial edge. It also holds a charm akin to Arcturus. The long stories of each song make for segments to feel like chapters amongst the album. Each tale long and multi layered but never ending. This is typical for Black Metal. Akin to the darkest classical Black Metal has always been. It never gets old, but it gets industrial and almost pop in places.
The album contains many of Enslaved’s trademarks and never fails to be interesting. Songs like ‘Axis of the Worlds’ reflecting a raw Black Metal energy of creative perversion and ‘Feathers of Eolh’ show an industrial edge and the greatest of commercial entrapments. When it works it works, Enslaved will capture you. A spell indeed, as it takes the air around you in such violent dreams of passion. It just never quite lives up to the greatest of Enslaved’s destructive hymns against the Earth.
There are some bands amongst Extreme Metal that just can’t fail to impress or darken our lives. Enslaved are a band that never cease their creative powers. They are forever casting maelstrom amongst us. It is for a dark magick that they continue in their subconscious coma. E will be a hard hitting force of passion for any Enslaved fan. It also casts itself as a staple of most Black Metal listenings. Amongst more commercial Metal it will land a mark deep within you but it can’t see itself as a burning fire or the raw destructive energy of the most powerful of Metal. It falls only slightly short of its aims. But a powerful story it will remain and it wont be forgotten. It forces itself as a band willing to decimate and rise again as a powerful moment of evil listening. This is Enslaved. They wont stop.