Record Label: Nuclear Blast
There are not many bands that reach their 15th studio album. They must be deeply devoted to the music itself and their fans at the same time. Enslaved just achieved this with Utgard, three years after E. But is this album worthy of the glorious Enslaved legacy?
The beginning left me speechless, as the first seconds of Fires in the Dark started with vocals reminding me of their classic song Havenless (from Below the Lights), but with darker emotion. An acoustic guitar then blends with them and then comes haunting rhythms and melodies from guitar and vocals. The second song is Jettegryta, which is in my opinion, one of the heaviest Enslaved songs with heavy riffs and Grutle’s vocals on the refrain giving a tragic touch. The next two songs have a “lighter” feeling with amazing structure and ideas; melodies are coming after atmospheres and then great vocals came and go all the time, making the first half of the album a pleasant music experience.
But this is not the end so far; Urjotun comes with a more electronic sound, blending at the same time with Enslaved DNA, which I think will please their most progressive-minded fans. The album continues with three songs that are more concentrated on the melody and atmosphere, with Storms of Utgard to be my favourite of all album, with outstanding guitar solos. Something that I noticed after the first listening session of the album, is that the last song of the album Distant Seasons, has no harsh vocals (showing as a glimpse of the future?) but I loved it anyway.
After the listening session, I understood that each song is like a puzzle; it is different and it gives you the bigger bright picture after you unite them. The album has variety and will please their loyal fans. Also, it has no fillers and I strongly believe that every song could be a single. Until their next album arrives, put this loudly on your speakers and enjoy it.
Enslaved – Utgard (Full Album)