“All the new music felt like an ice dagger through a sleeping heart”: Doom metal mavens Swallow The Sun release evocative, melodic new track Innocence Was Long Forgotten

Swallow The Sun in 2024
(Image credit: Jussi Ratilainen)

Finnish doom metal squad Swallow The Sun have debuted brand-new single Innocence Was Long Forgotten.

The track was released yesterday (July 2), along with a music video directed by Vesa Ranta and Petri Marttinen.

Innocence Was Long Forgotten was produced and mixed by Dan Lancaster (Bring Me The Horizon, Muse, Enter Shikari), mastered by Tony Lindgren at Fascination Street Studios and recorded by guitarist Juho Räihä at SoundSpiral Audio.

The band comment on the song: “All the new Swallow The Sun music felt like an ice dagger through a sleeping heart.

“So we wanted to work with a powerful producer, Dan Lancaster, to push this dagger even deeper into this heart of ours.”

Innocence Was Long Forgotten is the first piece of new Swallow The Sun music since their eighth studio album, Moonflowers, came out in 2021.

Much of Moonflowers, along with its critically acclaimed 2019 predecessor When A Shadow Is Forced Into The Light, was inspired by the passing of co-guitarist and lead songwriter Juha Raivio’s longtime partner, musician Aleah Stanbridge.

Stanbridge passed away from cancer in 2016, aged 39.

Raivio said in a rare interview with Decibel magazine in 2019: “Every word and note I wrote, I wrote for Aleah on this album and about my own battle [since her passing].

“This is [a] very personal and hard subject for me to speak [about] and I would rather leave it all to the music to speak [about] and for the words on this album to explain as it is all there.

“But to say something, this album name comes from the words of Aleah, ‘When a shadow is forced into the light’, and that was exactly what I needed to do. To push myself out from the shadows, as I had been pretty much a hermit in the woods for two and a half years, I had to push this album out.”

It is unclear at time of publication whether Innocence Was Long Forgotten is a standalone single or will appear on an as-yet-unannounced ninth Swallow The Sun album.

The band have one live date announced for 2024, which will take place at the Helsinki Metal Fest in Helsinki, Finland, on August 9.

SWALLOW THE SUN - Innocence Was Long Forgotten (OFFICIAL VIDEO) - YouTube SWALLOW THE SUN - Innocence Was Long Forgotten (OFFICIAL VIDEO) - YouTube
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Matt Mills
Contributing Editor, Metal Hammer

Louder’s resident Gojira obsessive was still at uni when he joined the team in 2017. Since then, Matt’s become a regular in Prog and Metal Hammer, at his happiest when interviewing the most forward-thinking artists heavy music can muster. He’s got bylines in The Guardian, The Telegraph, NME, Guitar and many others, too. When he’s not writing, you’ll probably find him skydiving, scuba diving or coasteering.