Death Metal / Thrash Metal / Technical Thrash Metal / Progressive Metal • Norway
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Extol is a metal band from Oslo, Norway, formed in 1993. Their style has varied and they have always kept a unique sound. They have shown influences from death metal, black metal, thrash metal, and progressive metal all at some time in their career.

The band was formed by drummer David Husvik and guitarist Christer Espevoll, who had been playing together and wanted to start a band. Peter Espevoll became their vocalist. In 1994, bassist Eystein Holm joined the band just before their first gig. Emil Nikolaisen joined as a second guitarist in 1995.

In 1996, they recorded for Norwegian metal compilation, "Northern Lights". Later that year they recorded "Embraced", a short demo. Ole Børud, formerly known for his death/doom project Schaliach, soon replaced Nikolaisen, who wanted to give more attention to his other projects. Extol's debut album, "Burial", was released in 1997 on Endtime Productions and showcased a death
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EXTOL Discography

EXTOL albums / top albums

EXTOL Burial album cover 3.50 | 3 ratings
Death Metal 1999
EXTOL Undeceived album cover 4.00 | 3 ratings
Death Metal 2000
EXTOL Synergy album cover 4.62 | 4 ratings
Technical Thrash Metal 2003
EXTOL The Blueprint Dives album cover 3.88 | 4 ratings
The Blueprint Dives
Progressive Metal 2005
EXTOL Extol album cover 4.00 | 7 ratings
Thrash Metal 2013

EXTOL EPs & splits

EXTOL Mesmerized album cover 3.14 | 3 ratings
Death Metal 1999
EXTOL Northern Lights album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Northern Lights
Death Metal 1999
EXTOL Paralysis album cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
Thrash Metal 2001

EXTOL live albums

EXTOL demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

EXTOL Embraced album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Death Metal 1997

EXTOL re-issues & compilations

EXTOL singles (0)

EXTOL movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

EXTOL Reviews

EXTOL Mesmerized

EP · 1999 · Death Metal
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"Mesmerized" is an EP release by Norwegian metal act Extol. The EP was released through Endtime Productions in November 1999. "Mesmerized" bridges the gap between the band´s debut full-length studio album "Burial (1998)" and their sophomore studio album "Undeceived (2000)". There have been a couple of lineup changes since the debut album as guitarist Ole Børud has been replaced by Ole Halvard Sveen and bassist Tor Magne Glidje has been replaced by Eystein Holm.

Featuring 6 tracks and a total playing time of 34:41 minutes, "Mesmerized" os quite a long EP release. "Mesmerized" features three new compositions and three remixes of tracks which were originally featured on "Burial (1998)". The three new tracks continue in the same technical/progressive death/black metal style of the material on "Burial (1998)". High level musical performances from all involved including some powerful snarling vocals and the occassional clean vocal part too (most prominantly featured on "Storms Of Disillusions"). Death (the band) are a major influence, but Extol are much more than a Death clone, and in addition to the technical death metal influences in the music, the tracks also feature elements from both black metal and progressive metal.

The remaining three tracks are as mentioned remixes of tracks originally featured on "Burial (1998)", and honestly they aren´t that interesting, and I much prefer the originals. It´s hard not to feel that the remixes devaluate the otherwise hiqh quality release that "Mesmerized" is. Therefore what could have been a 4 star (80%) rating drops to a 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating, but the three new compositions are still definitely worth the price of admission.

EXTOL Burial

Album · 1999 · Death Metal
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"Burial" is the debut full-length studio album by Norwegian, Oslo based death/black/progressive metal act Extol. The album was released through Endtime Productions in December 1998. Extol was formed in 1993 and released the "Embraced" demo on 1996. Opinions on the band often vary greatly, as they make no attempt at concealing their Christian faith (which in the metal community is not always a popular move). It´s a red thread throughout their discography, and on "Burial" the best example of that is probably the closing track "Jesus Kom Til jorden For A Dø" ("Jesus Came to Earth to Die").

Like the case is with Satanic/occult lyrics it´s always an aquired taste if you can stomach them when they are delivered in an outspoken way like they are here, but that´s up to each listener to decide for himself/herself. Listened to with as objective ears/read by as objective eyes as possible the music and the lyrics on "Burial" are relatively well composed/written. It´s interesting to read lyrics for a song like "Superior", where Extol turns the "regular" demons mutilate/kill Jesus story on it´s head (a story and similar stories we´ve heard Satanic/blasphemous artists deliver time and time again), and the lyrics generally leave very little room for interpretation of which faith Extol have. These guys definitely kick ass in the name of the Lord (and yes the pun is intended if you´re familiar with the "Braindead (1992)" movie).

Stylistically we´re treated to a combination of black metal, technical death metal, and progressive metal, which is relatively unique. Especially considering that this is a release from 1998. The vocals predominantly belong in the black metal camp of high pitched raspy snarling, although there are also some aggressive growling vocals on the album, which are not completely unlike the vocals by Chuck Schuldiner from Death, and a couple of clean vocal sections too (which is mostly heard in the almost psalm like clean singing delivery on "Jesus Kom Til jorden For A Dø"). But "Burial" feautures a lot of technical riffs and adventurous ideas, which put it more in the death/progressive metal camp, than in the black metal ditto.

"Burial" features 12 tracks and a full playing time of 62:06 minutes, so it´s a relatively long release. Especially considering that it is a debut album. The quality of the material is consistent though, and it´s not an album which feels like it overstays its welcome. The combination of intriguing songwriting, high level musicianship (there is some really great technical playing on the album and especially the drumming by David Husvik is of a high quality) and a powerful and detailed sound production, works wonders and "Burial" is overall a very impressive debut album, which really doesn´t sound much like a debut album at all. And then again...the tracks could have been a bit more tightly contructed and Extol do on occasion venture into territories which aren´t necessarily the most effective in terms of impact on the listener, but those are minor issues and "Burial" is upon conclusion a strong debut album by Extol. A 3.5 (70%) rating is deserved.


Album · 2013 · Thrash Metal
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"Extol" is the self-titled 5th full-length studio album by Norwegian based progressive extreme metal act Extol. The album was released through Indie Recordings in June 2013. Extol were formed as far back as 1993 but has been on a longer hiatus as this is their first album release since "The Blueprint Dives (2005)". They reformed in 2012 as a trio consisting of Ole Børud (Guitars, Bass, Vocals (backing)), Peter Espevoll (Vocals) and David Husvik (Drums). The former mentioned makes a return to the fold after he left in 2004.

The music on the album is predominantly mid-paced progressive extreme metal with what I would characterize as atmospheric alternative rock/metal sections featuring clean singing. The latter reminds me slightly of Porcupine Tree or something in that vein. The vocals are predominantly raspy sneering type vocals though. Somewhere between black metal styled vocals and aggressive death/thrash type vocals. References to acts like Death, Meshuggah, mid nineties Invocator, Enslaved, Cynic and Believer (both because of the music style but also because of their shared Christian beliefs and lyrical themes) come to mind, but Extol are actually quite a unique sounding act.

One of the things you notice right off the bat when listening to "Extol" is the high level musicianship. These three guys are very well playing. The raspy extreme metal vocals are not as varied as I could have wished, but the cleans are both well sounding and well arranged with harmonies. The sound production is on the heavy side. It´s clear, powerful and professional sounding, but it´s like no matter what pace the tracks are played in, the sound production makes them sound heavy and mid-paced. So even though there are actually a couple of faster paced sections on the album, my overall impression of the album is that it is very heavy sounding. There´s an almost futuristic sounding atmosphere about the album that´s hard to describe on paper, but it´s obvious that Extol are influenced by a lot of different artists and genres and they make those influences work in their favour. Death, thrash, black and progressive/alternative rock metal elements are all heard throughout the album.

This self-titled comeback album is a high quality release on all parameters. Great sound production, intriguing songwriting and flawless musical performances all around and a 4 star (80%) rating is a matter of course.

EXTOL Synergy

Album · 2003 · Technical Thrash Metal
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What caught me off guard about this album is not the huge change in style; that I knew was coming. What startled me was how GOOD it turned out to be! I bought it expecting a mediocre-to-good record, nothing amazing, but it wasn't too expensive and I like Extol's older work so I picked it up, and was promptly blown away. This is a metalheads, and especially musician's, playground. All the technical goodies are still here: sudden time changes, riffs using odd rhythmic structure and harmonies, tightly planned out screaming. It's just all in a thrash setting rather than a black/death setting. Don't be worried by the picture of them looking like a bunch of indie rockers on the back: this is HEAVY. Every song has sections that made me sit up and say "wow," particularly in the guitar work. If you like metal at all, get this! It's different from Undeceived and turned out to be a startlingly original piece of work, especially for a Norwegian band.

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