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Ihsahn's prodigious and prolific talents have been at the forefront of heavy music for the past three decades. He began his career as frontman of Emperor who would both define and refine metal, pushing the boundaries of what was considered possible within the most arcane of art forms and taking some of the most adventurous and extreme music of all time to a huge global audience. After the release of their final masterpiece, Prometheus: The Discipline Of Fire & Demise in 2001, the band parted ways to pursue new creative avenues.
Five years later Ihsahn returned with his solo debut The Adversary (2006), the first in a symphonic black metal trilogy of albums which would also include angL (2008) and After (2010). The latter finds Ihsahn putting the finishing touches on the trilogy and moving into progressive, post-black metal territory along the way .
"For the third album, it has the title After because it is after the conflict," explains Ihsahn. "The whole concept is mellower and more laid back and more observant. There is no sign of life in any of the lyrics. It's vaguer in the landscapes. The first line on the first song on the album is, "These are barren lands of fair and cold." Musically and lyrically it's the end of the trilogy, so it's indicating that it's the end of this project in a way."