At this year's Heavy Montreal festival, EMPEROR frontman Ihsahn (real name: Vegard Sverre Tveitan) spoke to Metal Injection about the band's plans for the future beyond the current tour dates celebrating the 20th anniversary of the "Anthems To The Welkin At Dusk" album.
"It's such a privileged position to be in," he said (see video below). "For all these reunion, or celebration things that we've been doing, we get to kind of cherrypick these wonderful festivals to play and we're lucky to have so many people dedicated to want to see it and everything.
"Making a record is one thing, but playing live is a totally different thing," he continued. "And, to be honest, in that live bubble, that kind of interaction with live music and the audience and everything, strangely, it feels very much the same, whether I play with EMPEROR or with [my solo project] Ihsahn. It's just performing those songs, channeling the energy that lay in them. And that is more of a state of mind. Of course, it varies, because it's kind of different things, but I've never really felt any difference.
"I play a very extreme form of music, and I come from Norway, and still I get to do both," he added. "There's not really much to complain about."
Asked if there are going to be any more EMPEROR shows after the band is done with the "Anthems" 20th-anniversary tour, Ihsahn said: "It all depends. In the past, we've said, 'This is the absolute last show,' and what have you. But we have no immediate plans beyond what we've scheduled. We're playing, not next weekend, but the weekend after, we do Party.San, and then kind of end off at Bloodstock in the U.K., play special guests for JUDAS PRIEST. A nice kind of ending of that chapter. And then we'll see."
Ihsahn's latest solo album, "Ámr", was released on May 4 via Candlelight/Spinefarm.