Nearly a decade has passed since the last album from Norwegian extreme metalists Enthral was released (not counting the 2010 mini-album Spiteful Dirges), but Obtenebrate, their monumental fourth effort, is more than worth the wait. Joining core members Gunnhild Bratset (guitar)and Kjetil Hektoen (drums, vocals) on bass is Kai Åsvik (Whip, Virus live), and the trio have created a black monolith of an album. Obtenebrate is like a malign force, pullling you in and leaving you smothered in its wake. It is as technically adept, imaginative and diverse as it is brutal, intense and dark. Death, black or dark metal - Enthral encompass these and more. Having subsisted in the Norwegian black metal underground since 1995, it is about time people take notice of Enthral. Judging by this album anything else seems downright unlikely.
Enthral was formed by Kjetil Hektoen and Gunnhild Bratset in their hometown of Sunndalsøra, Norway in 1995. The band has since relocated to Oslo and released three full-length albums; Prophecies Of The Dying (1997), The Mirror's Opposite End (1998) and Subterranean Movement (2003). While members have come and gone, the core duo of Hektoen and Bratset remains. Starting out as a melodic black metal act, the band soon evolved into a darker and much more original proposition. Combining elements of both black and death metal, and fusing them into a metallic alloy of their own, Enthral have carved their very own niche in the extreme metal terrain, not least thanks to their imaginative arrangements and unquestionable technical prowess. Lyrically, Enthral venture deep into the darkest corners of the mind, portraying anger, despair, angst and death - all themes perfectly befitting the complex, hellish structures of Obtenebrate.
Obtenebrate was recorded at Jam Productions by Stian Aarstad (ex-Dimmu Borgir) and mastered by Magnus Devo Andersson (Marduk) at Endarker Studio (Marduk, Ofermod, Griftegård etc.)