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iTunes Review

Never mind that Ivar Bjørnson and Grutle Kjellson are now the only original members of the Norwegian black metal band Enslaved—the group's 2012 album RIITIIR is its most progressive to date. This band has been pushing the boundaries of black metal ever since its 1994 debut album, Vikingligr Veldi. Its 12th album is also its longest. At five minutes and 26 seconds, the multi-tiered title track is the shortest song here. It balances elegantly haunting melodies and feral, demonic screaming without succumbing to obvious metalcore trappings. Meanwhile, the opening “Thoughts Like Hammers” drops listeners smack-dab in the middle of a metal maelstrom. After a typhoon of guitar feedback and relentless drum bludgeoning taper off, a doomy riff rises from the smoldering ashes; over this, Kjellson and Bjørnson do a Dr. Jekyll–and–Mr. Hyde call and response. With blast beats and ascending riffs intact, the band injects its Viking death metal with innovative arrangements that venture into the realm of classic prog rock. The closer is “Forsaken," an awe-inspiring epic that blasts past the 11-minute mark.

Customer Reviews

The continued progression of Enslaved...

…continues on RIITIIR. This band continues to push the boundaries of progressive black metal. The masters continue to impress.

Also, if you're talking crap about Enslaved, yet you listen to (and give 5 stars to) Trivium, The Used, Avenged Sevenfold, etc., you have absolutely no credence whatsoever. These guys are legends. Go back to your mall metal, and stop reviewing real music that you have no clue about!

Great Album

Steven Schnepp is an idiot. This is not a run of the mill metalcore album like he wants it to be, this is a fine example of Progressive black metal/folk. Very moody and great variation in vocal techniques.

Rate what you know

If you don't listen to metal and can't comprehend it's glory, please don't rate metal albums. I don't care if you saw this pop up in the 'trending new release section' on the iTunes home page, or whatever that section is that you sheep look towards to find new music. 1-star raters should be embarrassed. Your ignorance is showing.


Formed: 1991 in Bergen, Norway

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Norwegian black metal band Enslaved were formed in 1991 by guitarist/keyboardist Ivar Bjørnson and bassist Grutle Kjellson; a demo titled Yggdrstll followed a year later. The group's official albums during the '90s included 1994's Frost, 1997's Eld, and 1999's Blodhemn. In fall 2000, the band issued Mardraum, and continued over the following decades with the full-lengths Monumension (2001), Below the Lights (2003), Isa (2004), Ruun (2006), Vertebrae (2008), Axioma Ethica Odini (2010), and RIITIIR...
Full Bio
RIITIIR, Enslaved
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Customer Ratings


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