Vera : For some time, By Norse Music concentrates on obscure old and new work. Amongst them regularly reissues that initially came out in the early nineties. It is obvious that the label from Ivar Bjørnson is situated at the cradle of the first recordings of Enslaved. This next re-release happens to be the EP ‘Hordanes Land’, released on vinyl in 1993 and few weeks later on a split with Emperor. At that time the band was made up of core members Ivar and Grutle Kjellson, plus drummer Trym Torson. The material got a new mastering by Iver Sandøy at the Solslottet Studios in Bergen.
We find ourselves in the epicenter of the first wave of black metal from Scandinavia and Norway used to have a pioneering role in the genre. Thus these recordings are considered being the start of Viking metal, but of course they are truly harsh and icy cold. Grutle’s screams pierce you to the very marrow, but keyboards and synthesizers were already (incidentally) used. In the three lengthy songs they also inserted proper breaks, often with a rather atmospheric character or regaled with dark spoken words. As bonus they added the song ‘Enslaved’, now this issue turned into a full length album. That song was originally released in 1992 on a split with Satyricon. This re-release includes new liner notes and quotes of prominent musicians from the black metal scène. The digipak CD format includes a 20-pages booklet, but available in diverse formats, such as vinyl and digital.