Interview By Alison Booth
The end of an extended period of silence from Norwegian symphonic black metal icons DIMMU BORGIR, is now upon us! The band is ready to unleash the brand new opus, “Forces Of The Northern Night” on 28th April via Nuclear Blast. On this new soundtrack of the apocalypse, you can witness two different live shows: The concert in Oslo, showing DIMMU BORGIR on stage with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and a bombastic choir, as well as the entire performance at Wacken Open Air with almost 100 musicians in action.
Metal Shock Finland Senior Manager Alison Booth recently spoke to DIMMU BORGIR songwriter and guitarist Silenoz about the forthcoming release, as well as discovering updates about the new studio album. Check out some of what Silenoz revealed below, along with the full interview on the audio player:
On the release of “Forces Of The Northern Night”:
“It feels of course great to finally have this monumental documentation about our career out, after so many years. The two biggest shows you know.”
Discussing the process leading up to the live recordings, Silenoz told me:
“Well, it started back in 2009 actually, when we were writing for the Abrahadabra album. We were thinking about utilising an orchestra for that recording and the timing just happened that the orchestra approached us about doing a possible collaboration, a show. And we were really enthused about it. Because usually it’s the other way round, that the band goes to an orchestra, but it was the other way round.
So, we felt really good about that and came to the conclusion that they are going to record with us on the album at the time and then we were gonna start planning a huge orchestra show in Oslo. And it just took off from there really. A huge challenge for us, a huge challenge for them. But I think we have had this in the back of our mind for many years, that if this type of opportunity would arise, we would jump at it. Even if we had orchestras on our previous albums, that’s been in a studio setting – it’s a different thing to actually perform live on stage with a full orchestra and choir. That was kinda like a dream come true.”
Talking about when the orchestra approached DIMMU BORGIR, Silenoz stated:
“Yeah, that’s of course a huge thumbs up in my book, because that means that our type of music actually goes across other borders and reaches into the more conservative parts of the music business. So really, a sense of accomplishment on that one.”
About other projects, Silenoz said:
“I got Insidious Disease on the side and we just finished mastering the new album in January, so hopefully I get to have that out later this year at some point. Shagrath of course has been doing Chrome Division on and off too, but it’s also very important to stress the fact that these two things on the side has never been in front of what we do for Dimmu. Dimmu has always been the main priority and even if we kept pretty quiet the last few years, we’ve been working on and off with new material all the time. So we feel that once we come back with the new album, it needs to be something that beats the previous album, otherwise there’s no point in making a new one.”
On the subject of the new album, Silenoz revealed:
“We’re in the middle of it at the moment, but I would say it has even more variation than any of our previous albums. It’s more epic and symphonic, it’s more brutal, it’s more black metal, it’s more primitive. It includes everything that we are known for and what’s even better about it is that it has just come so easy. the challenge for us is always to shave off the stuff we think is not good enough. So coming up with material is never any problem, it’s just to figure out which parts to use for songs.
If we keep somewhat to the schedule that we have in mind, I would personally estimate late summer, early fall release if everything goes as planned. But it also comes down to timing and what the label thinks is smart strategically. This time we have gone to Fascination Street Studios in Sweden with Jens Bogren. We felt it was time to do something more organic for this type of record and to see what we could get out of his production skills, because we have always been fans of his mixes.
We’ve also grown tired of all the digital type of sounding albums that comes out here and there all the time. So we wanna go back to the roots in the sense that a drum kit should sound like a drum kit and a guitar should sound like a guitar and vice versa, you get my points. That’s what we wanted to do this time.
It sucks to be sitting on this for another few months before people get to hear it, but I think once the fans sit down and actually listen to this album for real, they will understand that okay, yeah it sucked waiting for this for so many years but it was definitely worth the wait.”