Emperor As The Shadows Rise Re-Issued As Picture LP

The most epic bands often struggle to clarify their voice, which includes composition, technique, and performance. For Emperor, the first foray consisted of crepitant necrotic recordings which emphasized solidarity with the early works of Hellhammer, Sodom, and Sarcofago. Later they refined their approach.

Leading up to what would become In The Nightside Eclipse, the re-recorded EP — featuring songs from Wrath of the TyrantAs The Shadows Rise showed the introduction of digital keyboard “symphonic” instrumentation and greater contrast in the technique applied to their morbid but oddly sentimental and pastoral work.


  • The Ancient Queen
  • Lord Of The Storms
  • Witches Sabbath

Now re-released by Hammerheart Records, As The Shadows Rise comes as a picture LP and can be found at the pre-order page.

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35 thoughts on “Emperor As The Shadows Rise Re-Issued As Picture LP”

  1. swaggot says:

    Dudes who buy these will be the first to be sacrificed Fremen style when the water wars commence.

    Jokes aside is Emperor actually that great? Is Nightside as good as the best of Burzum, Darkthrone, and Mayhem? Obviously Emperor inspired a lot of bad Norsecore with their high drama style, but were they on to something with their Tyrant and Nightside era tunes and just failed to develop it fully? Or was Nightside the apex of that bombastic theatrical style?

    1. soifsdf says:

      Jokes aside is Emperor actually that great?


      Is Nightside as good as the best of Burzum, Darkthrone, and Mayhem?

      Yes, but not better. In The Nightside Eclipse is better than most Burzum (because of the stupid interludes), but not better than Darkthrone and Mayhem.

      1. 'tism says:

        Norwegian BM Tier list:


        Ildjarn and Enslaved are not my cup of tea but they’d probably be in the 3rd and 2nd tier respectively if I liked them.

        Anything else probably isn’t worth it.

        1. Birkenhain says:

          Ancient surely deserves better than third tier. Svartalvheim and Trolltaar are great albums.

        2. 2 and a half mennonites says:

          gorgoroth and immortal are rockstar clowns. their best is overshadowed even by early graveland and dummy burger who are probably as bad enslaved and lightyears behind burzum and mayhem.

          ildjarn created some of the most meaningful statements about black metal but his actual music is just intentionally aesthetically offensive punk rock (barring his synth/neoclassical/whatever stuff and collaborations which were actually musical.)

          1. The best of Immortal overshadowed by Dimmu Borgir?
            It’s like Brett is running a social experiment where all the edgy dimwits are gathered here instead of posting conspiracy theories on facebook during quarantine.

            1. Autistic ubermensch imperial army of the future, reporting in.

              Too snarky to lose and too dumb to die.

              1. that's the way the load blows says:

                too square to know whats coming

          2. What did Ildjarn say/do?

    2. Cynical says:

      “Jokes aside is Emperor actually that great? Is Nightside as good as the best of Burzum, Darkthrone, and Mayhem?”
      Uh… yes? Obviously? I’d actually place it above any of the other bands you’ve listed; In the Nightside Eclipse is the best black metal album, period, and if you think there’s nothing to it beyond theatrical bombast, you’re not listening closely enough (protip: focus on the guitars, not the synth).

      1. A sign of synthcore black metal to follow says:

        The problem with ITNE isn’t the synth, but the overly loud mixing of the drums that drown out whatever intricacies the album could have had.

        1. 2 and a half mennonites says:

          pretty noobish to assume the album’s shortcomings are in the level mixing innit

    3. Psychic Psych Toad says:

      As noobish as this sentiment seems, it’s not an original one around here. Iirc, back around 2005-2006 on the old ANUS forums, one of the mods claimed to have never even heard Nightside because he knew that he wouldn’t like how overdramatic it was. I always found this very peculiar all things considered.

    4. Early works are up there. Skip anything after ITNE. Enslaved belongs up there too, as do the first couple Gorgoroths and Gravelands. Black metal is more on a per-album basis than per-band, with Burzum and Immortal being the exceptions.

    5. Imperial scribe says:

      If ‘bombastic’ means “high-sounding but with little meaning”, then In the Nightside Eclipse was not bombastic.

      Their follow-up, however, was.

      ItNE was such an earthshattering artistic success that even the band members themselves must have been at a loss for what to do next. You can imagine these young fellows paralyzed by their achievement, sketching desperate attempts to re-create something of the passion from earlier compositions, only to find that inspiration can’t be forced.

      At the same time, Emperor were under heavy strain to prove they had grown up. Apparently, ‘maturity’ meant classical music, and so they convinced themselves that the way to go was emulating the busy soundscape of entire orchestras. As a result, the sound production on Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk is more extravagant, the riffs are faster and more violent, and Ihsahn’s synthesizer is more diversified.

      Under the hood, however, there’s not much of the promised mature content to be found. Emperor used to write epic songs of well-organized complexity reaching for the stars, while these tunes are just treading water without much direction at all. In the early 1990s, these guys worked hard to develop their songs into culminations of varying scenery. AttWaD, contrariwise, is like a psychotic boar in charge of fireworks, where overblown eruptions of keyboard and sing-along vocals gratuitously detonate ex nihilo. Some of the components could probably work pretty well as isolated motifs, but on this record every element feels hopelessly out of context.

      The outcome resembles a satire album taking the outward appearance of ItNE and turning it up to eleven, making it spurt with noise, but with nothing to say. Filling the gaps with chaotic riffing and technical swagger, His Imperial Majesty probably hoped we wouldn’t notice that this patchwork of random scrap is bursting at the seams.

      1. Sort of like how Immortal lost it with their third album.

      2. There isn’t really a similar album to Anthems though is there? I’d say it’s still worth a few listens.

  2. Diaper O.G says:

    Who fucking cares? Enjoy whatever makes you cum

  3. Thewaters says:

    ITNE is definitely better than the best of Mayhem. Hard to say if it better than the best of Burzum and Darkthrone because of how different they are stylistically and compositionally. ITNE is definitely theatrical but I would not characterise it as overdramatic.

    1. swaggot says:

      See, there is the thing I am questioning with Emperor. Evidently the consensus is that ITNE is “theatrical” and also top-tier black metal. What does this say about black metal at large?

      Theatre is a venue for drama and has long been tied to money and industry. Is it just fine that the best black metal is all performance and show? Because that’s basically admitting that black metal is just an edgy punk rock reboot of KISS. That would make the whole notion of a metal underground and grassroots opposition to mainstream entertainment media essentially irrelevant, since the very basis of mass-catering amusement is theatrics. A romanticized, unwitting parody of reality that is charming and engaging because of how it allows the audience to distance themselves from the themes as they are portrayed through so much exaggeration. Then good black metal is just like Hollywood.

      Now take Mayhem, some mentally imbalanced but justifiably outraged dudes. Bereft of flash and pizazz, the music is dirty but grand, seething with inner tension. DMDS sounds like the world actually feels to the senses. ITNE sounds like a painting looks – elaborately crafted and controlled, designed with a specific intent to appeal. Both are musically good (though ITNE features a lot of overplaying; as good as the riffs are, they don’t hold up for as many minutes as the band thinks they can) but when it comes to actualizing a response in the listener, is it really most effective to have the message carried by theatricality and showmanship? Isn’t that a preposterously blatant irony?

      1. I swear if you switched the album titles around this post would actually make sense.

        1. swaggot says:

          You really think ITNE is “realer” than DMDS?

          1. i bought winrar says:

            I think De Mysteris is clearly more Heavy Metal and less removed from rock and punk. It’s not even hard to spot it in the music, for example the riff 1 minute into Freezing Moon is basically a reworking of Mercyful Fate’s Nightmare.

            In a way the production of In the Nightside does it a disservice, because the guitars could stand on their own but they are buried under tons of synths and noise, though it kinda also gave it an unapproachable aura which strengthens it as escapist art.
            Mayhem never made music as powerful as this ;)


      2. Thewaters says:

        My apologies, I meant theatrical in a Wagnerian sense.

      3. ya dig me bra? says:

        So whacu sayin is dat ITNE is made by a bunch of drama class dropouts tryin to do blck metal as opposed to DMDS, which is basically some punks tryina recreate Dracula?

        1. hard cock says:

          thats what i always heard one in DMDS one of the few black metal albums worth listening to

  4. future introduction says:

    I think Emperor best product is Wrath of the Tyrant, simple and savage riff interspersed with some “inner vision” part. (Although vision represents the pursuit of reason, which is Platonism, but I try to use “inner vision” expressing a sense of beyond visual centralism.)

    Somekind like “Inno A Satana” 1:30-2:30, it’s the best of metal as Nietzsche’s uebermensch/dionysus/body spirit, but the whole album does sound a little sluggish.

    1. Doug says:

      Production as if from another realm, shorter tracks, and offputting to the metalsucks crowd; this picture LP business is another topic but agreed, Wrath of the Tyrant is top shelf at least for frequent listening. Not having access to their back catalogue, I had dismissed Emperor out of hand for 20 years since they were darlings of the metal teen beat mags before finally hearing this album. Mixes good with Demoncy Faustian Dawn on random play when the mood strikes.

      1. future introduction says:

        ya, Wrath’s production sounds unimaginably great, a kind of unrepeatable roughness, we don’t need something universal and industrial

    2. RDS says:

      These recordings were from the same session

      1. future introduction says:

        Do you means Wrath & Nightside’s songs are from the same times? But not from the same album, both have good consistency, but there have different technique and form/structure between this two obviously, it means different thought by intentional. I think Nightside lacks the savage and naive feeling in Wrath, this trend can be seen in Emperor later albums, more and more lose the spirit of black metal itself. Burzum has always made stupid riff, Varg may is only Norwegian who know what they are really insisting on and remain true to their original aspiration.

        We see some neo extreme metal like DSO GORGUTS trying to create an advanced musical language on distortion guitar, it’s a betrayal of the real underground metal artistically, but on the other hand, I would think the existence of human beings cannot be separated from a certain degree of reason, but as long as there is reason, it will move towards to Platonism/idealism´╝îwhich is the yearning for “progress” and “better”.

        The emergence of DSO is inevitable, just like capitalism and technological domination, Nietzsche metal has been ruined, maybe we need some Marx metal and Heidegger metal to inject new power. But it’s still a paradox, still looking for evolution, still using reason.

        If you (follow my point and) agree with me, do you think metal will be submerged in human history?

        1. RDS says:

          Sorry I confused Wrath with the Emperor EP. These songs were from the same session as the Emperor EP.

      2. Imperial scribe says:

        Dates recorded:

        Wrath of the Tyrant – May 1992
        Emperor – December 1992
        As the Shadows Rise – December 1992
        In the Nightside Eclipse – July 1993

  5. Pepito says:

    Brad steven: you are small penised man.

    I big penis will fuck you. Dead fucked corpse from big penis

    Thank you

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