Vega, Copenhagen - 2010

Text: Tobias Nilsson Photo: Lunah Lauridsen

As Sahg had played much earlier than had been announced, we missed their show and were therefore left with Enslaved as first and only support band for Dimmu Borgir this evening.
They weren’t about to go easy on us however, which would soon be apparent.

After a long and atmospheric intro, hell broke loose in the form of Ethica Odini, partial title track of their latest album. And it was mostly the newer era of Enslaved which we got to hear during their time on the stage, but for once this seemed to go down well with the audience.
Well, no rule without an exception I guess, and here Enslaved pulled something very old and dusty out of the dark recesses of the bag; Allfadr Odhinn from their very first release, the E.P. Hordanes Land. This garnered a good response from the large but loosely packed audience gathered in the hall.

In fact, the general response from the audience was a rather calm one; mostly people stood still in their places and listened to the music in a calm and orderly fashion, and only let their voices be heard between songs. Here they were heard loud and proud however, so I did not get the impression that people weren’t happy with the Enslaved concert, quite the contrary. I think they just wanted to take it all in in another way than what the common metal standard, that’s all.
It wasn’t that the band didn’t try and loosen things up though, their entire performance made a groovy, almost rock n’ roll’ish impression on me, even though the band were taking things rather easy in the performance as well. Cato Bekkevold (drums) and Herbrand Larsen (keyboard/vocals) were hidden away in the back of the stage, where no light could reach them, and Grutle Kjellson (vocals/bass) and Ivar Björnson (guitars) were calmly walking about when the opportunity arose. Only second guitarist Arve ‘Ice Dale’ Isdal was sticking out from the rest, as he time and time again proved himself an expert poser. This is not a bad thing though; I’d rather watch someone throwing poses at me all night, than someone just standing around and gaze at their shoes…
Between songs Kjellson proved to be in a very good mood however, and after all the normal ‘great to be here’ and ‘thanks for having us’ had been sorted through, he showed a nice sense of humour and self-irony, as he made fun of himself and his co-workers by calling the band a bunch of ‘fjeldaber’, a common Danish derogative for Norwegians which can be translated as alp-monkeys.

Compared to the main act of the night, Dimmu Borgir, Enslaved were travelling light when it came to special stage equipment; it even took me almost half the gig to notice their back-drop! It was a small strip of cloth hanging all the way up under the ceiling, and it only had runes written over it from side to side, with and old wheel-like symbol in the middle. The runes read something like WZOIA OZWAI, and even though this makes no sense to me (I’ve tried looking it up) it may hold some importance to someone more familiar with the band.
The only other thing was a true-to-life sized skull mounted at the front of the drumkit.

Ultimately, Enslaved gave us a pleasant and well-performed gig, although they did not manage to get the audience especially fired up for the rest of the evening.
It should be mentioned that they completely surprised me at the very end, as all the band-members went to the centre of the stage after the gig was done, and arm in arm they took a bow as they bid us farewell. This was something I would have never expected from a black metal band, and I must say I approve, very nicely done.


Ethica Odini
Fusion Of Sense And Earth
Allfadr Odhinn
The Beacon


More from same event:

All Enslaved reviews:

Latest uploads: