After a five year hiatus, Extol recently revealed that their new self-titled album will be released on June 25th (one day earlier internationally) via Indie Recordings! As for the direction of the new material, the press release states that the record “is a like a complex metallic alloy. The playfulness of the songs and the brutal bonding of genres are transformed into a fusion of atmospheric and harmonic prog rock, merged with the tempered thrash and death metal that EXTOL so uniquely master. This album leads us straight to the core of EXTOL.”
Being one of my favorite bands of all time, this is AMAZING news! Extol was way ahead of their time when they first came out, so hopefully people are finally ready to fully grasp what they bring to the table and we won’t have to wait another five years for new music! Recently I got to send some questions to Peter Espevoll about the upcoming record, the metal scene and more! Check out the interview below and go pre-order the new album here!
Metal Mark- First off, thank you for taking out the time to answer of few of my questions! After a five year hiatus, June 25th sees the release of your self-titled record to the world. After the break, and all the work going into the album, is there anyone more excited to have this album out than you guys?
Peter Espevoll– Looks like many people are excited about this, but we are for sure very excited ourselves, and extremely happy to finally do a new record!
MM- Why, after five years, was this the right time to get back together and start playing together again?
PE– We´ve talked about it several times over the last 5 years, but it wasn’t before now that we all felt ready to fully commit to it. We all have had other obligations and challenges, both personal and music-wise, but now the timing was pretty good for all of us.
MM- Our first taste of new music came with “Open The Gates,” which definitely encompasses all of Extol’s previous material. Is this the best representation of what people can expect from the upcoming release?
PE– As always on an Extol album, the song will be quite diverse, so I guess “Open the Gates” represents the album, as much as any of the other songs would do. It´s probably one of the songs with the most obvious 70´s inspiration though.
MM- For you personally, did you approach your vocal styles and lyrics any differently than you had on previous records?
PE– I was actually a little bit anxious about the vocals before this one. I havent been doing any hard music over the last 5-6 years and on the new record we wanted to do more old school death metal stuff, like we did in our early days. So, to be honest I wasnt really sure whether I still had it in me you know. But, after doing a demo for the first couple of songs, I was quite convinced it would be sweet, and personally I´m really satisfied with how it turned out. Lyrically, the approach was much the same as it has been earlier; writing and adapting the lyrics to the final composed songs.
MM- When it comes to the new record, are there any surprises, musically or vocally, that may shock some fans?
PE– Hm. Hard to tell. I dont know what the fans really expect, since we havent been around for many years. I guess some might be “shocked” about the fact that David (drummer) is doing some very cool vocals (both screaming and clean singing) on the new album!
MM- “Open The Gates” is such a strong song to release as the first track for people to hear, but do you have a personal favorite track that you are truly proud of and people should be on the lookout for?
PE– I´m really satisfied with all the songs, but if I should pick one I think it might be “A Gift Beyond Human Reach”.
MM- Extol created a very, unique sound when the band first came out, and it seemed almost too outside the box for some. Do you feel people are more open to the unique mixture of styles that you bring to the table now?
PE– Considering the response we´ve gotten on “Open The Gates” it surely seems like people are open for our way of making music. To be honest I´m not too updated on how the metal scene has evolved tha last years, but hopefully even more people will enjoy this new album!
MM- Extol has been very influential in many bands careers, yet have still flown under the radar for a lot of fans, is this the album that will finally break you and give you the respect that us long time fans feel you deserve?
PE– Hehe. Whether we “break” or not is sort of out of our control. We just want to make the best music we can make, and we´ll just see what comes out of it.
MM- For us diehard Extol fans, with the new record, we have to know if there are tours in the works. For me personally, will we see you in the States soon?
PE– As of now, nothing is planned, and it doesnt look like we´ll be touring much. But one should never say never..
MM- I’ll leave this part open to you. Anything else you’d like to say to the fans out there?
PE– Thank you so much for the support you´ve given us over the years and for all the positive comments on our return! We truly appreciate it!! Thank you and hope you´ll pick up our new album when it´s out in June!