Gearing up to release their fifth studio album “Apotheosis,” this Friday, November 5, Hungarian black/pagan metal outfit BORNHOLM showcase a powerful asset in the void between pagan and black metal with new single “Black Shining Cloaks”, featuring a virtuosic solo from King Diamond/Mercyful Fate guitarist Mike Wead. Dark, almost doomy influences merge with background vocals in their trademark vocal spectrum of somber growls and ear-splitting screams and heavy, irascible guitar lines.
BORNHOLM say about “Black Shining Cloaks”: ‘”Black Shining Cloaks” is one of the earliest songs from this album. It is from the time when our previous album was released. We felt from the very beginning that this song is perfect for a music video. We decided that as the song was born, but this is quite different from the other songs on the album. The tempo, the structure is simpler, but the atmosphere is very strong.’
‘The solo at the end of the song was originally written and played by Mike Wead from King Diamond/Mercyful Fate. I felt that this song needed something unique at the end part, and I asked him what he thinks about it, and he recorded this really outstanding solo part that is the highlight of the song. We are so thankful for it because he is one of my most honored guitarists. This is a huge honor for us. We worked with Johan Baath again at the beautiful Van der Nootska Palace in Stockholm. The milieu of the building was perfectly suited to our imaginations.’
‘The lyrics of the song take us behind the thick curtains of the world of secret societies. A small group of enlightened people, who since the birth of mankind, have controlled and formed the human world; creating ages, cultures, and history from the beginning. They drive humanity through the ages to the very end, the deification of man. As the light splits into colors by the prism, they split knowledge into a thousand pieces, creating ideologies, cults and religions all around the world. You cannot find the original divine light among those colors, nor the truth among the religions or philosophies… you have to unify them to see it. There is only one light and the infinite darkness, the origin of everything, which allows for this light to shine.’
With “Spiritual Warfare”, BORNHOLM present a nearly melodic facet of their sonic spectrum – mixing their trademark black metal sound with dashes of pagan and folk metal whilst prominent frantic drumming and forceful riffing underlines their somber side.
Ever since bursting onto the scene in 2000, BORNHOLM has been an unstoppable force in the black and pagan metal realms, touring with household names like Ex Deo, Varg, Arkonaand many more. With their upcoming offering, “Apotheosis,” the unit is ready to take its career to another level and set the stage with sinister first single “I Am War God”. Mixing significant, ground-shaking black metal elements, ruthless growling and heroic pagan accents, the band absolutely showcases their variety and sonic progression.
BORNHOLM on “Spiritual Warfare”: “This song is a special song for me, in addition to hitherto unusual musical solutions, it also displays a lyrical apocalyptic vision. It contains biblical references, abstract visions, ritual magic. Behind the scenes of the physical world, warfare always takes place primarily among spiritual forces, which is the real driving force behind. This causes changes in the visible world. Which side is which is not so clear-cut, whether there are any sides at all or just one will. While it’s not a fast track, it still has the fastest part on the album. The cover painting is my work, just like all the visuals related to the album, it was brought to life greatly.”
“Apotheosis” not only showcases BORNHOLM’s tonal development, but also goes back to the origins of the band’s history and the heavy, often almost doomy influences mixed with indispensable atmospherically dark and raw flavor. Accompanied by sinister sacral sounds of historic proportions and a hypnotizing, incantatory chant, intro track “I Divine” heralds the dark ride to nowhere. It is precisely in the void between pagan and black metal that the sound finds its home, with tracks like “Spiritual Warfare” and “Black Shining Cloaks” – the latter of which featuring a magnificent guitar solo by Mike Wead (Mercyful Fate/King Diamond) – including its diabolic, atmospheric intro, “The Key to the Shaft of the Abyss”, representing the mellowness and extremes of the band. Along with the almost melodic borrowings and acoustic guitar inserts in combination with the pure rawness of “To the Fallen”, the record highlights the band’s variety and sonic progression. The title track “Apotheosis” is a slow, howling homage mixing aggressive, shrieking vocals and melodiously grim anecdotes. Album closer “Enthronement” closes the metaphorical and musical bracket and provides the 52-minute piece with a venerable, instrumental conclusion.
BORNHOLM add: “So the day has come, the new album is coming! Its title is Apotheosis, which is a Greek originated word meaning deification, divinization and the glorification of a human to a divine level. It contains 11 tracks and drives deeper into our musical world and soul than ever before.
We had to deal with a lot of difficulties both in the studio and in our private life during the making, but somehow something was always guarding the birth of the record. Nothing stopped, not even for a single moment, no matter what happened. It was a great experience to go through this uprising while the world is going into another direction. We didn’t lack anything; fate was with us – so the birth of the record was a sort of magical experience. Step by step, everything was in place in time and, without tolerating the outside world, we built another one for ourselves.”
Pre-order your copy HERE.
On Apotheosis, the band has built a flowing, epochal sound concept that combines explosive guitar/bass lines with thunder-fast drums, spiced with choral elements and leading into a heavy blend, which BORNHOLM present successfully in all kinds of variations from track 1 to 11. Recording and mixing took place at SuperSize Recording Studio in Hungary with the contribution of Viktor Scheer, with mastering completed by Maor Appelbaum, who has worked with bands like Dream Theater, Annihilator, Mayhem,
“Apotheosis” track listing:
1. I Divine
2. My Evangelium
3. Sky Serpents
4. The Key to the Shaft of the Abyss
5. Black Shining Cloaks
6. Spiritual Warfare
7. Darkened Grove
8. To the Fallen
9. I am War God
“Apotheosis” will be available in the following formats:
- CD Digipak
- 1LP Gatefold Black
- Digital Album