album review: Enola

Seigmen_Enola_FrontCoverWhen Seigmen disbanded in 1999, the mere thought of a new album seemed beyond impossible.
But when they suddenly debuted three new songs during their 2012 gigs, a seed of hope was planted in the fanbase – perhaps, maybe, sometime, a new record?

By pure coincidence, three of the band members discussed possible recording dates in my car, when I was driving them to their hotel in Bergen in september that year – so I knew something was up.
And when they started posting cryptic photos on Instagram last year, the rumours really started to circulate.

Cut to March 2nd, 2015. The day I finally got my first glasses, to end months of headaches caused by my 37 year old eyes being, well, 37 years old. And also, the day I received «Enola».
The first new Seigmen album in almost 18 years.

I had very mixed feelings: Intense anticipation mixed with a little doubt and anxiety – How many comeback albums have been any good? What if they had lost the magic touch? What if I didn’t like it at all? The first single, «Hva vi elsker» had just been released, and we’d already heard three of the other songs live. Four very different songs, that didn’t really give any hints to a cohesive record, no matter how good they were.

I braced myself, pressed play, and closed my eyes. The next 52 minutes were weird, to say the least.
New music from Seigmen. And not just that – this was amazing, new music from Seigmen.
The press release states that you cant really hear that 20 years has passed since «Metropolis», but I respectfully disagree: I definately hear a more mature band here. More confident. More experienced. More at peace with itself as a band, and eachother as band members.
And most importantly: A band that still has something to say.

The first track, «Hva vi elsker» is 41 seconds longer than the more straigh-forward single edit, and works really good as an album opener. Definately the «lightest» song on the album, which makes the transition to the more desperate and depressive «Trøst» really strong. Well played.

Without going into each and every song (that would take forever), I’ll have to say that my favourite tracks are «Deus», «I Mitt Hus» and the wonderful, wonderful «Hvit Stjerne, Hvit Støy».
If there’s one single song that clearly states that Seigmen is back, then this is it.
As classic «Seigmen» as it gets. Instant goosebumps, just by writing about it.

The album as a whole is a great achievement. The mix is fabulous; with Kim’s loud and clear bass taking just as much place as it should. The classic, dual Seigmen-guitars are ever-present. Noralf’s unique drums, as well. And Alex sounds clearer than ever.
I hear small nods to pretty much all of their previous records – but like said records, this one also has a distinct style and sound of its own. Looking back, while moving forward. The only way.
Unlike so many other «comeback» albums, this one is actually a new chapter in their story.
I really hope it isn’t the last one.

Otto EgilSeigmen press photo by Bjørn Opsahl(2)

An afterthought:
Shortly after getting «Enola», I was struck by a somewhat strange feeling.
A bit hard to put down in words, but I was puzzled with the fact that just a few days ago, I was living in an existance where these songs didn’t exist. They already resonated so strongly within my mind, that the concept of a past without them seemed almost unreal.

I sincerely hope that some of you will get that same feeling in a few days, when the album is released.

Seigmen press photo by Bjørn Opsahl(5)


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