Enslaved / Epic 12-Part Documentary tells the story of the Norwegian Extreme Metal band

From The Abyss: 15 December 2020

Undeniably a cornerstone of Extreme Metal, Enslaved were founded in 1991 by the then 17-year-old Grutle Kjellson and 12-year-old Ivar Bjørnson. This 30 year Heavy Metal career is currently being featured elaborate 12-part television documentary named ‘Heimvegen (The Way Home)’.

Enslaved – Heimvegen (The Way Home) 12-part television documentary

Words: Jools Green

‘Heimvegen’ is a track from their 2011 The Sleeping Gods EP and the opening soundtrack to the documentary, currently being broadcast every Saturday on Norwegian TV (TV Haugaland) and on YouTube, with all episodes subtitled into English.

The documentary offers a detailed insight into the history of the band, following Ivar Bjørnson and Grutle Kjellson as they guide us through the journey of Enslaved’s formative years.

Grutle told metalTalk: “Doing the documentary for TV Haugaland has turned out to be one of the biggest, positive surprises in our career. It pretty much came out of the blue as well. We were asked early in the summer of 2020, and we were like “oh ok, a local tv network wants to have a little chat, why not?”. That it has ended up as a 12-part documentary was far beyond all of us involved could imagine, and such a great surprise!!

“Director Dag Olav Husås has really outdone a hell of a lot of productions made by a lot bigger networks around the globe in my opinion. He has somehow made us re-discover ourselves, our roots, and going down this memory lane had been an utter pleasure.

“I hope not just our fans, but also new acquaintances will appreciate watching this as much as we did making it.”

Photo of the Extreme metal band Enslaved.

At the time of writing six episodes are available to watch online, with six more to follow. It is an impressive documentary which literally leaves no stone unturned. From their childhood to the present day, interviews and casual conversation is interspersed with live music excerpts and if you have any unanswered questions about Enslaved, no doubt the answer is to be found in this documentary series.

They visit their childhood homes, their original rehearsal space, their first gig venue and the place where Grutle and Ivar first met, Gamle Slaktehuset rehearsal rooms and you also witness the first meet up in 30 years of their previous band Phobia.

One of the best aspects is that you see the humour and the natural lifelong “brotherly” bond that exists between Ivar and Grutle, part of the secret of their longevity and success.

The only minor pitfall is if you don’t speak Norwegian you have to follow the subtitles, as there is so much going on it gets a little mentally exhausting, but it is worth the effort and you just may end up speaking a little Norwegian by the end of the 12 episodes.

Definitely worth watching whether you are a dedicated Enslaved fan or just have a passing interest in them.

Episode 1:

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