THOMAS ERIKSEN (MORK): “Being Secluded Is A Big Part Of What Black Metal Is To Me As A Human Exercise And An Art Form”

Thomas Eriksen of MORK

Norwegian Black Metal pioneers MORK are set to release their sixth studio album entitled Dypet on March 24th. Thomas Eriksen, the mastermind behind MORK to the time to talk with Metal Express Radio about the MORK’s upcoming album, his own Big 4 of Black Metal, his favorite memories since MORK’s formation, and more. Check out the chat below!

Metal Express Radio: MORK’s sixth studio album entitled Dypet is set to be released March 24th, what can you tell fans about the upcoming release?

Eriksen: I guess you can call it chapter six of the MORK saga. All the albums are time capsules of my life at the time of creating and recording. The last couple of years is what brought up Dypet from my depth, to be clever with some play on words. It has some really great atmospheric parts, some harsh parts, some epic parts and some of the most beautiful parts to date.

MER: How was the writing and recording process having this being MORK’s sixth album?

The writing and recording processes has been the same all the way, as I am comfortable with how things have been in the past. I recorded and shape everything on my own in my own studio, which allows me to be as free and self-indulgent as humanly possible. I work alone and spend time alone with my material. Being secluded is a big part of what Black Metal is to me as an human exercise and art form. One little difference this time around has to be the fact that I’ve demoed some of the stuff whilst on trips to the mountains, forests, in fjords and other places around Norway. I brought a laptop, a sound card and a guitar in the car as I’ve gone on trips. A refreshing new experience. As before I use outside people for mixing and mastering.

MER: How would you compare Dypet to MORK’s previous five albums?

Eriksen: I can compare in the way that Dypet is a natural follow up to Katedralen. Every MORK album has been me opening a creative gate more and more, always stepping further and further away from a preset narrow path or cookie-cutter kind of Black Metal. MORK has come to its own, I suppose. Not just being a tribute to the days of yore in Norwegian Black Metal. The spirit is still there, but I feel it has its own sound by now. Evolution is important. To let go and let what happens happen whilst creating.

MER: You’ve recently released a single from Dypet entitled ‘Bortgang’, what kind of feedback have you been able to receive?

Eriksen: I haven’t been able to catch up on to much feedback, honestly. Seems people can relate to it. Personally the track has to one of my top achievements regarding composition, atmosphere and lyrics.

MER: What do you see as plans for 2023?

Eriksen: MORK will be performing live. We do have some festivals on the schedule; Inferno Festival in Norway, Walpurgisnacht in Germany, In Flammen in Germany and Brutal Assault in Czech Republic. There are some touring plans in the making, but those aren’t done yet. Hopefully we get contacted by more festivals and bookers after they’re reading this. And I am obviously working on new material. There is also a side project lurking in the shadows, which will be unveiled in time.

MER: Who do you hope to tour with that you haven’t yet and why?

Eriksen: We would tour with anyone, I suppose. As long as there ain’t too much political attachment going along with it, if you catch my drift.

MER: How would you describe the Metal scene in Norway?

There are many artists and bands in all ages, which is a sign of the genre prevailing, at least. Being a small country as well makes that most people know each other too.

MER: What does the history of Black Metal in Norway mean to you?

Eriksen: It gave us the art form and atmosphere which I appreciate and can get lost in to this day.

MER: If you could make a big four of Black Metal, who would it consist of and why?

Eriksen: Hard one to answer. Everything one say will be twisted against you. This music is very important to many people and what kind of bands vary from person to person. Big in the way of meaning or popularity? If I would drop 4 meaningful bands, to me, it would be (according to this very moment. This may change later); Bathory, Mayhem, Darkthrone and Burzum. These are the essential ingredients, in my mind.

MER: Since forming the band in 2004, what have been some of your favorite memories?

Eriksen: First would be the moment I realized that MORK and black metal was a real outlet for me to get lost in. Second would be experiencing my first official releases through a label. I still remember vividly myself, the band and our then label manager packing the very first MORK vinyl in the label manager’s kitchen, in Canada during the summer of 2016. That was then the third release, but the first on vinyl. It was also a surreal feeling walking off stage after playing the House Of Blues in Las Vegas during Psycho Las Vegas in 2019. Being a small Norwegian artist from a small town having the music pave the way to the U.S. a proud moment. We’ve gotten to play several places throughout the world and only look forward to experiencing and playing even further.

MER: Out of Mork’s six albums, what is one you would suggest to a new fan and why?

Eriksen: This is also an answer that probably can differ from time to time, but at this moment; Det Svarte Juv. As that ties together the old and new MORK, in my mind anyway. People can navigate back and forth from that one.


  • Matt Zaniboni

    Matthew is an interviewer here at Metal Express Radio. He started his passion for music journalism back in his college radio days serving as the Heavy Metal Director at WKKL out of Hyannis Massachusetts. During Matt’s tenure in radio, he has had time working for commercial stations in Boston Massachusetts such as WAAF, WZLX AND 98.5 The Sports Hub before landing with Metal Express Radio. Anytime you want to talk heavy Metal, hockey, Guiness, and dad life, Matt is your guy m/

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