Enslaved have released their fourteenth album E, taking the progressive black metal veterans into new territory once again.
Frontman Grutle Kjellso says the new lineup changed the dynamics and it felt like a reboot for the band that released their first album in 1994.
“It was a positive vibe in the studio, we spent a lot of time together and recorded two guitars, bass and drums simultaneously,” Grutle says.
“We really pulled it off together this time as a band and that was amazing to be a part of, it was not as separated as it been on some releases.”
Håkon Vinje replaced Herbrand Larsen on keyboards and they wanted the instrument to play a bigger role, rather than just be an extra sonic element.
“The main reason is because of his fantastic skills and good hands, he’s more like a classic rock John Lorde type of keyboard player,” Grutle says.
“We really want to take advantage of the keyboard position and transform the role into a lead instrument.”
Although they are tied to the Norwegian black metal scene, Enslaved never wanted trends in the scene to dictate their sound.
What was created was not only a reflection of what the band chose to do independently, but also happened to fit in enough with the scene.
“With Enslaved, a song is never calculated, it comes naturally and is made as we go along,” Grutle says.
“Our approach has always been go with the flow, we try to let the riffs play their own parts and treat them as living organisms.”
“When we started there wasn’t many extreme metal bands around, so all the ones that played extreme just fit into that scene.”
They love coming to Australia, playing here last year and in 2013, but Norway to Australia isn’t an easy commute.
“First, we gotta do a tour in Europe, then we will tour the States, unfortunately Australia is hard to get down to so there’s a wait,” Grutle says.
“Hopefully we can make it down by the end of 2018 or the start of 2019, but at this point nothing is confirmed.”
Enslaved’s new album E is out now and can be ordered here.