Guitarist Sven Atle Kopperud (a.k.a. Silenoz) of Norwegian symphonic black metallers DIMMU BORGIR spoke to Metal Shock Finland about the status of the band's upcoming long-awaited follow-up to 2010's "Abrahadabra" album. "Everything is pretty much set to go," he said. We're still in the final stages of getting everything, artwork-wise, ready, [as well as] photos, videos, stuff like that. So, things are taking a bit of time. I guess after seven years, a little bit more waiting doesn't hurt too much, hopefully."
He continued: "We feel that we're sitting on the best album that we could possibly do at this time, and personally, I think it's definitely our best album to date. Obviously, that's something that everybody says, but if I didn't believe that we would do our best album, there wouldn't really be any point doing a new one. So, yeah, I'm really excited about it, and I know that quite a few fans will probably be positively surprised. And, yeah, we can't wait to get this stuff off the ground and get going.”
Asked when fans can expect the new DIMMU BORGIR disc to be released, Silenoz said: "Well, I would say… When we spoke last time, I said something about around this time [laughs] or November of 2017, but now I think it's gonna be the first half of 2018, the way it looks now. We're really looking forward to have it out."
DIMMU BORGIR's latest release was the "Forces Of The Northern Night" DVD, which was made available in April via Nuclear Blast. The set contains two of the band's live performances: their legendary show in Oslo, presenting DIMMU BORGIR on stage with the Norwegian Radio Orchestra and a bombastic choir, as well as their entire performance at Wacken Open Air festival in 2012 in Wacken, Germany with almost a hundred musicians on stage.
"We were lucky that 'Forces Of The Northern Night' was something of a layover, I guess you can call it," Silenoz told Metal Shock Finland. "I was really happy about the response to that; there's been great feedback all over, so we're really happy about that too."
Silenoz told Rock 'N' Roll Journalist this past summer that all the writing on the new DIMMU BORGIR album was done by the core trio of Silenoz, vocalist Shagrath and guitarist Galder. "We had a little bit of assistance from the keyboard player, but it was less on this album than it was on the previous one," Silenoz said. "That seems to be working best and it means there's less cooks in the kitchen. [Laughs]"
As for the musical direction of DIMMU BORGIR's next effort, Silenoz, said: "I think it's safe to say that [the parts that are] more epic and majestic are more epic and majestic, and the same goes for the brutal sound of DIMMU and also the primitive and more black metal sound of DIMMU is more black metal this time around. So you will have the more extremes of each part that we are known for."
Shagrath concurred, telling Antihero magazine earlier in the year that DIMMU BORGIR's new disc will contain "a lot of the elements which DIMMU BORGIR are known for, so I think the fans will not be disappointed. It also includes a lot of themes and riff ideas that you can link back to '93. So, it's like a combination of different themes throughout the history of DIMMU BORGIR. It also has a lot of symphonic elements and we are using a big choir on this new record, and it's also darker, more atmospheric, more primitive, more black metal."
Shagrath elaborated on the musical direction of the new DIMMU BORGIR album, saying it's "a mixture of everything, but in DIMMU BORGIR you can expect the unexpected. That's how we like to, when we do something we want to, there is no limits for where we can take it, in which direction, and that's how we want it to be, it needs to be. It's progressive also, the new album, but it also includes a lot of atmosphere, as I said. Elements from like the riff atmospheres from 'Enthrone Darkness Triumphant'  album and the 'For All Tid' , the debut record, and all that stuff. So, it's a good combination of it all, but at the same time, it's also progressive, and that's very important for us as artists to stretch the limits and try out new stuff. We are a band, we have never been afraid of going into new directions and as an artist, it's also important to not try to repeat yourself too much, because then it would be boring. But we are not a band like AC/DC, where you buy an album and you know what to expect. But DIMMU BORGIR are quite different, even though I'm a fan of AC/DC."