The Blueprint Drives
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Unlike ghosts who return to their haunts, Oslo’s EXTOL have embarked on a new era with “Blueprint” (short for its full title “The Blueprint Dives”). Six months after successfully unleashing “thrash synergy” upon the world by touring the USA (supporting their last album “Synergy”) with Demon Hunter and The Agony Scene, and touring Europe with Swedish progressive doom-masters Opeth, the Norwegians went through a dramatic unforeseen line-up change. Both guitarists decided to leave the band: Christer and Ole decided that the commitment to the band had become too demanding. Two months later EXTOL re-discovered former guitarist Tor Magne Glidje and his brother-in-crime Ole Halvard Sveen, the masterminds behind Ganglión and black-metal cult-act Lengsel. With their combined musical aptitude their contributions have played an important role in EXTOL’s musical direction. During the summer of 2004 the new line-up produced the band’s fourth full-length album at Oslo’s Toproom Studios with Borge Finstad (Mayhem, Borknagar) and then travelled to Antfarm Studios in Aarhus, Denmark to mix and master the album with Tue Madsen (The Haunted, Mnemic, Heaven Shall Burn). Seattle’s design-collective Asterik Studios (Poison The Well, Blindside, Zao, Open Hand, Bleeding Through) provided the album’s eye catching visual representation. As always, EXTOL continue to explore their high musical skills and visions, but here in a more straightforward and tangible way than on “Synergy”. After a decade of song writing, “Blueprint” contains the band’s most diverse material and without a doubt EXTOL’s heaviest and most energetic sound.