Enslaved and Jo Quail hook up for alternative version of Forest Dweller

Enslaved 2022
(Image credit: Press/Nuclear Blast)

Norwegian prog metallers Enslaved have teamed up with cellist Jo Quail for an alternative version of Forest Dweller, which you can watch below.

The new version of the song is taken from the recently announced expanded version of the album, Heimdal (Deluxe), which will be released through Nuclear Blast on March 1.

Heimdal (Deluxe) features include the studio album in full, as well as alternative versions of both Forest Dweller and Congelia both featuring Quail, bonus track Gangandi, plus the entirety of The Otherworldly Big Band Experience, the band's 2022 streaming event featuring fellow psychedelic Norwegian proggers Shaman Elephant.

"It is an absolute honour to have Jo Quail on these special versions of Forest Dweller' and Congelia," says Guitarist Ivar Bjørnson. "We are all big fans of her unique work and style; I have personally had the pleasure of working with her for some time through By Norse Music (the label co-founded with Einar Selvik and our manager Simon Füllemann). When we had the chance to invite guest artists for the release show in Bergen of Heimdal back in March 2023, Jo Quail was a given. She blew our (and the audience’s) collective minds with her powerful interpretation and performance on Forest Dweller and Congelia - to the degree that it simply could not be the end of the story.

"She has a take on her art that is one of a kind - impossible to categorise, haunting, emotive and atmospheric; we feel that this version of us joining forces underlines the artistic and musical kinship we feel being present between our two camps. So here we are; for the world to hear! Be sure to check out Jo’s releases while you are at it!!!"

"I’ve long been a fan of Enslaved, and I have huge admiration for the way their masterful compositions broaden and deepen with each release," enthuises Quail. "When the band invited me to collaborate I had to re-read the email several times! I was honoured and humbled by this invitation from a band so greatly revered by so many of us all over the world, and I was tremendously excited by the chance to explore our sonic worlds together. Enslaved are the same people on and off stage, which is not always a given, and it’s something that, in my opinion, translates in their music and performance - the connection with their audience in concert draws us in deeply and it’s nothing short of inspiring.

"It was an absolute honour to be invited by Enslaved to perform Forest Dweller and Congelia with them in March 2023. I approached these two quite diverse tracks with immense respect, as both were already fully developed and everything sat perfectly and exactly where it needed to be, so any contribution from me needed to underpin or enhance the existing story arc rather than divert from it. Enslaved are musically very generous; they were wholly supportive of my suggestions for cello parts, and the result was a collaboration that I shall treasure for all time. I’m thrilled that this now has life beyond that one very special concert, and I hope you enjoy the result!"

Pre-order Heimdal (Deluxe).

Jerry Ewing

Writer and broadcaster Jerry Ewing is the Editor of Prog Magazine which he founded for Future Publishing in 2009. He grew up in Sydney and began his writing career in London for Metal Forces magazine in 1989. He has since written for Metal Hammer, Maxim, Vox, Stuff and Bizarre magazines, among others. He created and edited Classic Rock Magazine for Dennis Publishing in 1998 and is the author of a variety of books on both music and sport, including Wonderous Stories; A Journey Through The Landscape Of Progressive Rock.