The German masters of dark folk metal, EMPYRIUM, have their comeback album, The Turn of the Tides, set for a July 18, 2014 release. Notwithstanding their creative break, The Turn of the Tides is an EMPYRIUM-album par excellence, although it bears strong testimony to the artistic and personal growth Schwadorf and Helm have undergone since 2002.
More info can be found here. Check out the song, “Dead Winter Ways,” below. Pretty damn good.
German record label, Prophecy Productions, have posted the majority of their back catalogue on youtube for fans to enjoy. Famous for their niche of eclectic folk, progressive, and dark metal, the label has released many classic albums, including releases by IN THE WOODS…, EMPYRIUM, GREEN CARNATION, TENHI, DRAWN, and BLAZING ETERNITY.
Fifteen years after the release of their debut album, A Wintersunset …, EMPYRIUM will perform the very first concert in the band’s history on Whitsuntide 2011 (June 10 until 13) at the Wave Gotik Treffen in Leipzig, Germany. Schwadorf proudly and expectantly confirms the performance:
“With great excitement and anticipation we hereby confirm that EMPYRIUM will play its first (and maybe last) live show ever on this year’s Wave Gotik Treffen. We are very busy preparing the show right now. Expect a very special line-up and a set-list featuring songs from all albums we released and even unreleased material. We hope to see as many of you EMPYRIUM maniacs as possible on this special event to make everybody happy and satisfied! More details will follow.”
Prophecy Productions are incredibly happy to announce that EMPYRIUM, the most renowned Prophecy act ever, has decided to reunite and to record new music. Here’s the official statement of Schwadorf on the reunion: “Since the rumours start to spread we think it’s about time to make this official: EMPYRIUM is alive again! Our first new sign of life will be the song ‘The Days Before The Fall‘ on the Prophecy Prod. compilation ‘Whom The Moon A Nightsong Sings‘ but we have plans for more! The spirit is back and it really feels right to us to start writing songs with EMPYRIUM again. We are not in a rush though so don’t expect a full lenght today or tomorrow but we have the patience and faith to make this new songs outstanding and unique. Just as EMPYRIUM ever was….”
To celebrate this remarkable news, you can order all EMPYRIUM albums from Prophecy‘s online shop for only 9,99 Euro incl. worldwide shipping here: http://shop.prophecy-productions.de/
To say that now defunct EMPYRIUM never received the level of publicity that it deserved is a given. Making their debut in 1996 with A Wintersunset, EMPYRIUM emerged as part of the neo-folk/dark metal movement that was largely, yet quietly, pioneered by the roster of artists on Prophecy Productions. The band decided to call it a day after the release of Weiland in 2002 and this release serves as an introduction compilation to new listeners as well as offering something new for old fans. A Retrospective features remastered tracks taken from all four of the band’s studio albums along with two unreleased new tracks, “Der Weiher” and “Am Wolkenstieg,” as well as a newly arranged and recorded version of “The Franconian Woods in Winter’s Silence.” For starters, EMPYRIUM‘s sound is characterized by a prominent use of neo-folk acoustic guitars and some keyboards, strings, and wind instruments along with the standard electric instrumentation. The deeply soulful, melancholic, and majestic atmospheres are further enhanced with ominous, sublime vocals and, at times, an almost doom-like pace. The song order as well as song selection work well to provide a seamless listening experience from beginning to end. To put things into relative terms, the band may draw some similarities to OPETH at their most acoustic, the atmospheres of early BORKNAGAR, the doom of early KATATONIA, mid-era BATHORY, and labelmates, TENHI. However, these parallels are just somewhat shallow reference points. EMPYRIUM were not one of the greats but they were a damn fine one that made their mark with their unique sound. A Retrospective is the perfect gateway drug for those who missed the train the first time around but are ready to learn about an entire world that they never knew existed. (Prophecy Productions)
As the title suggests, A Retrospective… is a look back on the work of EMPYRIUM. Aside from re-mastered songs from all four studio albums, the CD contains two unreleased new tracks, “Der Weiher” and “Am Wolkenstieg,” as well as a newly arranged and recorded version of “The Franconian Woods In Winter’s Silence” (originally off A Wintersunset…).
The CD will be released as a lavishly designed, gold-embossed digibook. Many fans will be particularly interested in the in-depth band biography contained in the sixty-pages booklet. This text takes a closer look at the history of the band and all its influences music and content-wise, and it will make transparent the whole artistic aspect of EMPYRIUM and its changes in the course of years. Thus, it will contribute to a substantially deeper understanding of EMPYRIUM.
In tandem with the regular release of A Retrospective…, there will be a six-CD box encompassing the complete works of EMPYRIUM, including the demo …der wie ein Blitz vom Himmel fiel… and A Retrospective…, in an elegant and identical digibook design. Strictly limited to 500 copies. In addition to this, there will be re-issues of all previous albums in digibook form, also limited to 500 copies each.