The triumphant return of Green Carnation

Metal Hammer

Over the last three decades, Kristiansand’s Green Carnation have striven to wring hope from the bleakest of circumstances, and to dig deep within themselves to nurture the most fertile of musical shoots. Having emerged from the heart of Norway’s metal scene – founder member Terje Vik Schei, aka Tchort, played bass on Emperor’s landmark 1994 album, In The Nightside Eclipse – the band expanded into richly progressive realms far beyond their gothic and doom-laden origins. Their second album, 2001’s Light Of Day, Day Of Darkness, a seminal and widely regarded masterpiece, took the form of a single, hour-long track whose unforgettably resonant core motif and far-ranging tonal explorations endeavoured to come to terms with the death of Tchort’s daughter while welcoming the birth of a new son. After covering varied yet immediately identifiable ground with three more albums, the band split up in 2007, reconvening seven years later, initially as a live entity only.

Fourteen years after the release of their last album, The Acoustic Verses, Green Carnation have emerged from the studio to further their legacy once more, only for their new album, Leaves Of Yesteryear, to arrive in the middle of a global pandemic that’s seen the planet grind to a near halt. For vocalist and co-lyricist Kjetil Nordhus, the current situation might be terrifying, but neither he nor his colleagues are going to be daunted by the strange new world they’ve returned to.

“These are worrying times,” he admits, “both for the music scene and the world as a whole. But there’s been an explosion of online activity and live streamed concerts, and we are doing the same. The album release show we were going to play on May 23, we’re going to stream live instead. Of course, everything could be back to normal again by then, but I kind of doubt it. We’re a ‘more is more’ kind of band, so it’s probably not just going to be a concert, it’s going to be several hours of different kinds of interviews and stuff. We have to see it in a positive way and make the best out of it.”

Green Carnation

(Image credit: Season Of Mist)

Green Carnation’s reunion was never a certainty. As Nordhus recalls, “For the first five years after that split I thought it would be permanent. It was Tchort who decided to call it a day and when we talk about it now, the reason was that we really didn’t know what to do next. I think he felt that he’d lost a bit of control over the band and we’d all just moved in different directions all at the same time.”

Ossuary

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