"Eremita", the fourth album from former EMPEROR vocalist/guitarist Ihsahn, sold around 900 copies in the United States in its first week of release. The CD landed at position No. 32 on the Top New Artist Albums (Heatseekers) chart, which lists the best-selling albums by new and developing artists, defined as those who have never appeared in the Top 100 of The Billboard 200.
Released on June 19 in North America (one day earlier in Europe) via Candlelight Records, "Eremita" was recorded and produced at Telemark's Ivory Shoulder Studios, with additional tracking completed at Notodden's Juke Joint Studio and Seattle's Envisage Audio. The effort was mixed by Jens Bogren (OPETH) at Fascination Street Studios in Örebro, Sweden. Alongside Ihsahn, the album features performances from drummer Tobias Ornes Andersen (LEPROUS), saxophonist Jørgen Munkeby (Norway's SHINING), guitarist Jeff Loomis (ex-NEVERMORE), and vocalists Devin Townsend, Einar Solberg (LEPROUS), and Heidi S. Tveitan (STAROFASH). The album's packaging was created by award-winning Spanish designer Ritxi Ostariz.
"Eremita" begins a new musical chapter for the highly regarded musician; his previous album, "After", forming the final part of a planned trilogy on its release in early 2010. Offering nine new songs to his growing worldwide audience, "Eremita" is the longest and most spirited of Ihsahn's solo recordings.
Reflecting on the recording process, Ihsahn notes, "This is right where I want to be musically, with lots of room for dynamics and expressive variety. Tobias and Jørgen have really added to the organic vibe I was going for and have contributed to the overall feel with their fantastic musicianship. And to have Devin, Jeff, Einar and Heidi adding their special moments, I am very privileged to be able to work with such a talented group of people. I really feel this is some of my most inspired work yet."
Exhibiting Ihsahn's highly-trained guitar and keyboard skills, "Eremita" (Latin for "hermit") is a journey that is sure to find an expanded audience for the revered 36-year-old.
A special two-minute video preview of "Eremita", featuring audio segments from the record and exclusive footage filmed during the album's creation, is available below.
"Eremita" is available on standard CD and a limited edition deluxe digibook (featuring an exclusive bonus track).
"Eremita" track listing:
02. The Paranoid
04. The Eagle And The Snake
06. Something Out There
08. The Grave
10. Recollection(deluxe edition only)