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Stunning. - 100%

JeremiahTwattenfaust, May 19th, 2004

Although I'm reluctant to give anything 100%, I do feel that this is one album that deserves it. From the epic opening track “Slaget om Lindisfarne” to the powerful closer and title track “Eld”, it just oozes atmosphere and quality.

The album’s beginning is deceptively calm, opening with a moody string section that crescendos towards the sounds of a boat coming ashore, firmly instilling the Viking atmosphere in the listener. This is definitely the highlight of the album for me. Next comes the more straight-up Hordalendigen (“The Man from Hordaland”), with its classic opening riff and descent into a fast yet atmospheric song that sets the standard for the rest of the album. Alfablot (“Sacrifice to the Elves”) again has more of an epic sound, with the almost operatic vocals completing the Viking imagery; Kvasirs Blod (“The Blood of Kvasir”), however, builds up more vocal track, with Grutle’s rasping vocals doing justice the song’s themes of Nordic Gods. For Lenge Siden (“A Long Time Ago”) begins with the sound of a man speaking in some unknown language, and then tells the story of a people’s thirst for revenge at the killing of their ancestors. This is followed by the anger of Glemt (“Forgotten”), with the powerful vocals and consistent riffing that have become Enslaved’s trademark. Finally, we have the closing track, Eld (“Fire”). The commanding vocals and atmosphere really compliment the destructive and apocalyptic lyrics and the song is an incredible finish to the album.

Overall, I’d say that this is one of my favourite metal albums of all time, and is definitely deserving of a 100% rating.