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Enslaved Unveil Title + Artwork for New Album

Enslaved - Riitiir
Nuclear Blast Records

Norwegian progressive extreme metal band Enslaved have revealed details for their upcoming 12th studio album, which is titled ‘Riitiir.’ The disc is set for a late September European release, and will hit shelves in North America on Oct. 2.

Guitarist Ivar Bjornson says, “The album is, as mentioned, entitled ‘Riitiir’ – a self-made ‘Norse-ified’ version of the words ‘Rites’ / ‘Rituals.’ Rittiir is ‘The Rites of Man,’ to put it in a formulaic and easy way. There is no story with a timeline; again we’ve built structures that lay above the independent lyrics that we feel more comfortable with letting the reader explore, interpret, or simply discard themselves. It is entirely up to them.”

The cover art for ‘Riitiir,’ which was can be seen on the left, was created by longtime collaborator Truls Espedal. It is the seventh album cover he has done for the band. “Enslaved’s music is constantly evolving and expanding, and we early on decided that the artwork should reflect this,” says Espedal. “From my first collaboration with the band on [2001’s] ‘Monumension’ and forward, we have slowly merged different aspects into the work; what we wanted to do now was to further expand and change things up a bit, without losing the connection to earlier work.”

Espedel goes on to say, “It still has a strong sense of symbolism, symmetrical compositions and references to Norse art. But there is an even bigger emphasis on realism on ‘Riitiir,’ which hopefully adds atmosphere to the finished work. This was the first time I had the whole album to listen to from the get-go. So for more or less 90 percent of all the hours spent in my studio, ‘Riitiir’ was on constant repeat on the stereo and I truly believe that had a major impact on both the process and the finished result.”

Enslaved will be performing in this year’s Barge To Hell cruise from Miami to the Caribbean. The ship sets sail on Dec. 3.

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