Below the Lights



by Per Ardua Ad Astra USER (30 Reviews)
January 18th, 2005 | 180 replies

Release Date: 2003 | Tracklist

Ivar Bjørnson : Guitars, keyboards, effectors
Arve Isdal : Lead guitar
Grutle Kjellson : Vocals, bass
Dirge Rep (Per Husebø) : Drum

Guest musicians
Dennis Reksten : Synthesizres FX
Inge Rypdal : Lead guitars on "A Darker Place"
Gina Torgnes : Flute on "Queen of Night"
Børgvin Tungrock Kor : Chant on

Enslaved are one of the founding fathers of the genre known as viking metal, the lineup has gone through many changes over their illustrious career, yet with each release they manage to produce something new and original.
'Below the Lights' brings in elements of death metal and progressive metal along with the typical viking metal that Enslaved is known for.

As Fire swept clean the earth: This song is such a great way to start of this album, it begins with an interesting sound from the synthesizers, sort of like an old record player but with chords (hard to explain) but it fits perfect. This leads into this song, typical tremelo picking and screams, very nice. The song features interludes with chants and spoken vocals along with a more mellow guitar, before blasting back into the tremelo picking. About midway through the song, a death metal approach is taken, seemingly out of no where, this soon slows down to a mellow riff, with a short guitar solo. The song then blasts back into tremelo picking and finishes on the same opening to the song.
5/5 Great song

The Dead Stare: This song is a little more upbeat than the first, a mid paced riff along with good drumming here makes for a nice combination. Soon enough, there is a solo that fits in with the upbeat part of the song, even though the first part of the solo is a bit cliched. The solo leads right into an interlude, a very good one at that, this in turn leads into blasting tremelo picking with the drums balancing it all out. The song then takes another turn for the slower, sort of like parts on Arcturus' 'The Sham Mirrors.' The song then finishes by playing the same riffs from the beginning of the song, again.
3.5/5 A good listen.

The Crossing: Acoustic intro here, played very nicely, dwelling in both major and minor chords. Soon the acoustics are broken with some tremelo picking, and some synthesizers in the background for an extra dimension to the song. After this tremelo picking has taken effect, in comes another acoustic part, played to perfection. This same part is then played with distortion and drums, it sounds very good. About halfway through the song, the song picks up with a typical Enslaved riff, this really picks up the song. Good stuff all around. This part also includes spoken and chanted vocals. About 6 minutes in, there is a solo but it serves the purpose of a lead part here. Towards the end of the song, it really picks up before slowing down and fading out at the end.
4/5 Good track

Queen of the Night: This intro is very weird, almost jazzy mixing an acoustic guitar and a flute along with the drums going in the background. Leading into a nice, typical Enslaved riff. The next part (along with most of this song) incorporates lead parts and melody, very well executed. The solo in this song is one of the better ones on this cd. The first lyrics on this song are sung, and they are sung very well, i love this part. This next part really picks up the pace, intense drumming and very fast guitar riff, along with screams. This is more like the older stuff that Enslaved did, this is prove that they still have skill.
5/5 Probably my favorite track on the album, though it's hard to pick.

Havenless: This song starts off with a chant, with guitars blaring in the background, it makes for a very interesting intro. This goes on for a little, then into a typical Enslaved riff, with some palm muted stuff along with screams. Nothing bad here. Soon comes in a cool riff, somewhat like a Quo Vadis song, but slowed down and if you added in chants and wind. This part is very interesting. This goes on for quite a while before returning to the original riffs in the song. The song then ends the same way it started, with the chant.
3.5/5 Solid Song.

Ridicula Swarm: This song starts off with cello (synth) it's a very sad and depressing intro, i love the atmosphere that it gives off. The song then gets extremely fast, fast. A very fast song, with technical drumming and an awesome guitar riff. About halfway through the song, there is a symphonic interlude, along with clean guitars. This is quickly broken with viking chants and great guitarwork. This song rotates in and out of traditional viking metal and a more black metal approach.
5/5 In the running for best song on the album.

A Darker Place: A sort of slower guitar part to open this song along with some synth parts. The song then picks up a bit, along with great vocals here, they are sung particularly well. This song then goes into black metal mode, along with death metal growls. This song gets very fast at this point, good stuff. The song eventually returns to the parts with great vocals. At about 4:30 the song stops for a second and the sound of nature comes in, followed by a beatiful acoustic part. With some guitars in the background, nothing big though as the acoustic is still the main focus of the music. The song fades out with this acoustic part along with the guitar solo. This song ends on the sound of nature. Thus ending the album.
4.5/5 Awesome track

This album gets 4/5. At times it can be a bit repetitive, but even with that, it's a great album nonetheless.
Recomended for Fans of Opeth especially.

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Comments:Add a Comment 
Dancin' Man
May 27th 2005


Album Rating: 4.5

I love this album. The riff from As Fire Swept Clean the Earth is so catchy. Just the name gets the rhythm of it stuck in my head. I can't decide if I prefer this album or Isa. Both are great. Catchy metal that is still interesting.This Message Edited On 05.27.05

May 28th 2005


Album Rating: 3.5

I like this album, but I expected more of it, most of the songs are just too long. Still a good album though.

3.5/5 (for now) Maybe it will grow on me.

May 30th 2005


this sounds nice, good review.

I'll buy this as my 2nd enslaved album

November 25th 2005


ive always wanted a enslaved cd...hard to find tho...good review

September 5th 2006


my personal favorite is Isa... i love how their guitars use the black metal techniques involving distorted chords in conjunction with tremolo picking, but their tasteful progressive soundscapes that they create with the instruments as they seem to ebb and flow through verses and climaxes is full of such rich atmosphere. ive heard that this is closest to the "Isa sound", and i certainly hope so as i plan on giving it a listen soon.

June 30th 2007


This one is my favorite though Ruun gives it a run for its money. I don't see why everyone likes Isa so much.

Ominous Inane
July 19th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

I really like this album, the only other one i have is Eld and it's quite spectacular too!

September 16th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

How good is this album compared to Isa and Ruun? I want to get an older album from Enslaved (most likely I'll get blodhemn first) but also want to get another similar to their newer works. Is this as good as Isa and Ruun?

September 21st 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

Yessss just got this. Gonna listen now.

September 21st 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

I think I may prefer this to Isa and ruun, it's more energetic and raw though retains the progressive influences with similar production. Unlike Isa and Ruun, there was no pont n this album that I felt bored on, the other albums had a few outstretched points it seemed, while this is just awesomeness all around. Very tough choice but I think Queen of Night is my favorite track here, followed closely by The Crossing.

October 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

I prefer Ruun and Isa simply because they are way more diverse than this and their past albums. This album still has some killer tracks on it (hence why I bumped it up to a 4 tonight).

October 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.0

This is easily better than Ruun (the first four tracks are great, but it loses its momentum after them) and i still would say I prefer this to Isa, only because this album is much more solid all around.

Blodhemn on the other hand I may prefer more to this, in owning it in about half the time i[ve owned this album, i've listened to it twice as much.

October 15th 2007


Album Rating: 3.5

Not a big fan of this album. I think Isa is much, much better.

October 15th 2007


Album Rating: 4.5

I think Isa and Ruun have a better feel for me due to the fact they were my first exposure to the band. This album is somewhat in the vein of Isa and Ruun, but its a step back from the variety of those albums.

November 8th 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

^^^^^^^Indeed, its a pretty sick song

December 21st 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

My favorite album from Enslaved's "newer" material

December 22nd 2007


Album Rating: 5.0

My favorite album by one of my favorite bands. The songwriting and musicianship are extraordinary.

January 15th 2008


Album Rating: 5.0

I cant stop listen to the last 3 albums by them. They are so good

"Ruun", "Isa" and "Below The Nights".

And lots of the older stuff is also pretty good.

Amazing band in my book, pretty unique.

April 2nd 2008


Album Rating: 3.5

I've been diggin this lately. Great band.

Digging: We've Got a Fuzzbox and We're Gonna Use It - Bostin' Steve Austin

April 2nd 2008


Album Rating: 4.0

excellent band actually. i need to give this album more listens

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