Enslaved: In Times

Bergen’s prog heroes chart another new course

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At this point, it comes as no surprise that Enslaved’s 13th album is both ace and another subtle change of direction. While the influences you expect are all there, In Times is far more varied in pace and character than last outing RIITIIR, and is also far more to the point.

The Bathory roots still stick out here and there, and there’s even a lead guitar line in opener Thurisaz Dreaming that sounds like Om-era Negura Bunget to keep the black metallers happy, but otherwise there’s still loads of Pink Floyd and prog-influenced atmospherics as well.

Add in a few sprinklings of Neurosis-esque post-metal, Herbrand Larsen’s ethereal vocals, and a folky chant that wouldn’t have been out of place on Below The Lights, and it all sounds very much Enslaved.

The variety of moods is greater than the last few outings, however. The musical flow from stormy chaos, to the calm of the tempest’s eye, to the warm joy after the maelstrom passes, all occurs in the first 10 minutes of In Times, and it never stays in one place very long thereafter.

Enslaved’s glorious melodies sweep you along with one of the most captivating records from one of the most engaging metal bands of the last 20 years./o:p