Enslaved is the foremost Norwegian viking influenced metal band. They have played together since 1991 and they are one of the longest living Norwegian metal bands. Last night they played at the Rockefeller Music Hall in Oslo, in a collaboration with music streaming services company Wimp. Update August 24.2013: You can hear the concert on Wimp here. Enslaved’s first album was released in 1994 and was called Vikingligr Veldi. From the beginning Enslaved have been fascinated by the Norwegian viking ideals and beliefs, and they have kept up with this until today. Their latest CD, Riitiiir was released last year, and has got great reviews everywhere. Enslaved have got four Norwegian Grammies so far, one for each of the CDs released before Riitiir. They have also won other prices for their music, and have headlined many festivals. Live they are one of the best Norwegian metal acts, and what I saw of the gig last night confirmed this. One of the things that distinguishes Enslaved from many of the other Norwegian and international metal bands is that they combine clean singing and growling, often in the same song. Their keyboard player, Herbrand Larsen is the clean singer, while front guy and bass player Grutle Kjellson does the growling. Live Enslaved is always fun to see, since they – beside their good songs – deliver one of the best live acts in Norwegian metal. Grutle is the obvious front man, but guitarist Ivar Bjoernson establishes a solid base on the left side, while Ice Dale rules the right side of the stage. Ice Dale, or Arve Isdal as he is called in civil life, is maybe my favorite Norwegian metal musician. First of all he is a great guitarist, but he also delivers a visual show that is surpassed by few. Besides Enslaved he also is a member of Audrey Horne. I didn’t see all of the Rockefeller concert, but I have seen Enslaved many times since my first time in 2005. One of the songs they played while I was there, Vertebrae, from the same titled album from 2008, is definitely better live than on CD. Not that it isn’t good on CD, but it is an obvious live song. Enslaved is central among the Norwegian metal bands and will continue to be so in the future, too. As long as they continue releasing price winning CDs and keep up with their great stage show, I will join the rest of their fans in front of the stage for their shows. All pictures are © Per Ole Hagen and must not be used without written permission.