Norwegian epic black metal pioneers BORKNAGAR will release their tenth studio album, "Winter Thrice", on January 22, 2016 via Century Media.
"Winter Thrice", which — just like 2012's "Urd" — was mixed by Jens Bogren at Fascination Street Studios (OPETH, KREATOR, AMON AMARTH) and packaged in artwork by Marcelo Vasco of P2RDesign (SLAYER, MACHINE HEAD, SOULFLY), is unique to the BORKNAGAR catalogue also because it features four vocalist parts, including the return of original singer and ULVER mastermind Kristoffer Rygg, a.k.a. Garm, who guests on two songs.
The album encompasses everything that BORKNAGAR has put to tape over the past two decades, from their most brutal assaults to their most experimental compositions, with a larger progressive vibe than ever before, making it an absolute highlight in the band's already stellar career so far.
The track listing for the CD is as follows:
01. The Rhymes Of The Mountain
02. Winter Thrice
03. Cold Runs The River
05. When Chaos Calls
The album's limited-edition digipak CD version and the gatefold 2-LP also come with the bonustrack "Dominant Winds" and additionally, the digipak will include a BORKNAGAR logo patch.
As a first teaser for "Winter Thrice", BORKNAGAR has released a lyric video for the album's opening track, "The Rhymes Of The Mountain". Check it out below.
BORKNAGAR founder and guitarist Øystein G. Brun says: "This was in fact the very first song I wrote for the new album and in many ways a very personal song. The song is, quite frankly, a full throttle hymn to the mountains.
"Growing up between the mountains here at the west coast of Norway, the inborn attraction towards the mountains is very real — and has been real for generations. Maybe it is just some sort of evolutionary misfiring deriving from my ancestors where I feel the urge to get up high to watch for dangers or enemies approaching from the coast, or to find new places to settle down. Maybe, maybe not. But throughout history, mountains have had a special place in many cultures and that's certainly no coincidence. This is my way of portraying the grandeur feeling of being on a mountain top with thin air, deadly winds and bloody taste in my mouth. That feeling."
He added the following about the album's artwork: "Once again we have been delighted to work with the genius Brazilian designer Marcelo Vasco to achieve a visual expression that projects the quintessence of our new album, 'Winter Thrice'.
"As usual, there is no obvious concept we uphold, but rather a piece of design with subtle ideas pointing in various directions. First and foremost, the cover holds the general feeling or the flavor that we wanted to express through the music and lyrics. The grandeur depth, the fierce reality and the cosmic mystery of life. As an example, the upper part of the cover has a cosmic feel to it and likewise the bottom part has a more earthly vibe. The wood-carved tree somehow represents the link between the two essential scopes in life — inwards and outwards, whilst the fire burns. And for those looking very closely on details you'll also find some references to our previous work. Apart from that, I prefer to leave it for everyone else to find their own meaning in the cover."
BORKNAGAR has already been confirmed to appear at next year's edition of Germany's Wacken Open Air festival, taking place on August 4-6, 2016. More tourdates to promote the release of "Winter Thrice" will be announced in the coming weeks.
Øystein G. Brun - Clean and Electric Guitars
Vintersorg - Grim Vocals, Clean Vocals and Choirs
Jens F. Ryland - Lead Guitars
ICS Vortex - Bass, Clean Vocals and Choirs
Lars A. Nedland - Keys, Clean Vocals and Choirs
Baard Kolstad - Drums