Conceived in 2004 by Thomas Eriksen, near the dark Norwegian forests in the small towen of Halden, the one man project of Mork began to stir. With the echoes of Burzum and Darkthrone, the Norwegian Black Metal came of age with the 2007 demo Rota Til Ondskap, the debut album Isebakke entered existence in 2013. Now following on from their 2017 debut for Peaceville Records, Eremittens Dal, Mork returns with a continuation of dark, spell-binding, yet ever evolving black metal in the shape of Det Svarte Juv.
Thomas Eriksen explains the album’s origin as such:
“The album has been part of a strange and dark period of my life. The darkest period of my life, infact. Since early 2017 there has been a tornado of tragedy and misery consuming my existence. Roughly throughout the whole process of making this album. ‘Det Svarte Juv’ is filled with sadness, hate, anger, pain and even strength and self-belief. There are no guests appearing on this album, it’s extracted purely from my own being and soul without any inflictions from outside expectations. It is in my opinion; Mork at it’s finest.The music of ‘Det Svarte Juv’ is as previous Mork releases, varied. There’s classic blast-beat riffs, black’n’roll, doom and melancholic melodies. It’s pure and true in that it is made without any outside opinions or in regard to any expectations. “
The cover art, by David Thiérrée (Behemoth) was designed to encapsulates the mood of the album. Eriksen explains
“I communicated my vision and feelings to David and he absolutely nailed it! The huge overwhelming deep black abyss and the weakling that’s being dragged towards the edge. The final step before the leap into endless darkness.”
M¢rkeleggelse opens with dark and brooding strings before driving percussion elevates the sense of urgency. Gutteral vocals, with a choral background enhance the darkness before a change in time signature and pace drive us into doom. Da Himmelen Falt picks up the pace with a frenetic rhythm (Then The Sky Falls) a melancholic piece driven by the bass work.
På Tvers Av Tidene features ripples of Mandatory Suicide by Slayer, but with fuzz in overdrive. Den Utst¢tte (the Fault) opens with ferocity and continues with brutal breakdowns, swallowing all in its path.
I Flammens Favn is a hot blast of bass driven death
“This scorching piece is, as the title suggest, a rough translation of “In The Embrace Of The Flame”. It has to be one of, or even, the most aggressive track from our new album. The band is run as a one-man project creatively, but the whole band decided on making a video for this song. We agreed that it wouldn’t have a narrative but, instead, showcase each band member in action individually. I think this really helped to gain the intimate but intense feel we envisaged.”
The video was shot in Vannvogna Kulturhus in Halden, Norway by John Fredrik Heramb and Gray Gull Productions and can be watched here
Skarpretterens ¥ks is a dark groovy monster while Den Kalde Blodsvei is a sharp, ferocious, cold blooded killer. Siste Reis (Last Trip) opens with a psychedelically progressive gallop before picking up the pace and breaking down into a delicate but deadly bridge with some interesting guitar flourishes. Karantene (Quarantine) is more pensive, with howls of isolation and hints at madness.
The chilling title track (The Black Gorge) Det Svarte Juv closes the album in epic cinematic style. Atmospheric, darkly haunting soundscapes with guttural Norwegian overlay and incredible riffs and hooks. I feel a lot is lost through not speaking Norwegian, however this is musically diverse and melodic while ticking all of the boxes for modern black metal.
Melodic, melancholic, cold and fuzzy death. Most enjoyable.
Mork’s Det Svarte Juv is out now and is available to buy via Amazon here
- Da Himmelen Falt
- På Tvers Av Tidene
- Den Utst¢tt
- I Flammens Favn
- Skarpretterens ¥ks
- Den Kalde Blodsvei
- Siste Reis
- Det Svarte Juv
Each Monday The Metal Report sends out a list of all stories, interviews, reviews and features we’ve posted for the previous week. You can sign up for it here