In the early 1990´s an underground band named Forlorn was born. They played a particular type of doom metal that blended together a wide spectrum of musical styles, including the epic sounds of Bathory’s Viking metal albums. As they evolved into a full-fledged doom act, some of the songs were filed away and the band’s name was changed to Isole.
In 2003, Mats and Ragnar, decided to resurrect the old hymns and thus, Ereb Altor was officially born. Officially, because this underground Swedish epic metal band’s history dates back to the early 90's, Mats and Ragnar’s years with Forlorn.
Growing up with Bathory's epic era in their hearts, it comes as no surprise that their music would somewhat flaunt the influence of their house gods. So with Bathory's anthems as their spiritual foundation, they set out to find their creative and unique niche within the epic Viking metal genre.
In 2003, Ereb Altor entered the studio to record “Awakening”. It included reworked tracks, some dating back 10 years or more. Limited to 100 copies, including a full-color layout, the album received much acclaim, though it was never unleashed to the masses and the years passed…
But in early 2007 Mats and Ragnar heeded the call of the one-eyed elder to enter Apocalypse Studio and record a full-length. Though they had not yet secured a recording contract, they hoped that someone would be willing to release the finished product. Indeed I Hate Records jumped at the chance to release first-class Heavy Metal; i.e., epic, heavy, melodic, melancholic, and true to the style created by such bands as Bathory, Scald, and DoomSword, as well as harboring elements from Candlemass and Isole.
This debut album, entitled “By Honour”, comprised 7 long and adventurous tracks to kill for, delivered in a beautifully laid out 8-page booklet courtesy of Midark Media. Following its release, Ereb Altor undertook a few festival appearances assisted by the inclusion of session musicians.
The response generated by “By Honour” was overwhelming and inspiring Mats and Ragnar to soon release a follow-up. Once again an album was recorded sans recording deal.
“The End”, a slightly fasted album featuring more Scandinavian melodies and lyrics focusing on Nordic mythology, was picked up by Napalm Records. The title track is in fact 3 songs that are tied together to tell the story of Ragnarök. The choirs and the atmosphere from the first album remain and once again it contains 7 hymns.
EREB ALTOR is the brainchild of Ragnar and Mats, the doom masters behind ISOLE's dark anthems. On their second collaboration, the Swedish duo also pays homage to the hypnotic and substantial power inherent within this genre. The viscid and elegiac riffs, as well as the doom metal foundation created by the dragging and purposely monotonous drums, make way for perfectly placed folk elements and haunting vocals. Ragnar plays with disparate vocal lines and coloring in order to communicate the oppression and hopelessness oozing out of the compositions. The songs in turn intensify into epic journeys that pull the listener inexorably into Ereb Altor's world. "The End" is a dark work of art, to which lovers of doom will unequivocally succumb.