Erlend Hjelvik, former frontman for Kvelertak, has gone solo. The metal singer announced Tuesday (18) that he is forming a new band called Hjelvik and will be releasing the band’s debut album, Welcome To Hel later this year via Nuclear Blast.
“Signing with Nuclear Blast is a dream come true for me,” said Hjelvik in a statement (reported by Blabbermouth). “Since I was a teenager, I’ve been a fan of classic NB bands like Immortal, Dimmu Borgir, In Flames and so on — so that makes me feel extra proud to call Nuclear Blast my new label home. I’m certain Nuclear Blast will do an awesome job bringing Hjelvik metal to the masses on my new album, ‘Welcome To Hel’, and many more to come.”
Nuclear Blast is excited about the partnership as well. Said head of A&R at Nuclear Blast Europe Jens Prüter, “It’s been 10 years since I first saw Erlend with KVELERTAK in my hometown Dortmund in Germany. Their debut album had only been out for a couple of months and was on heavy rotation on my turntable. I was blown away by the raw energy of his stage performance, and ten years later, it is an honour to start working with him on HJELVIK. He has not lost his high energy and brings his unique mix of black metal, hard rock and punk to a new level. Welcome to Nuclear Blast and onward to Hel!”
Hjelvik has described the sound of his eponymous band as “blackened Viking heavy metal” filled with lyrics about Norse mythology and history.
A member of Kvelertak since its formation in 2007, Hjelvik left the band in 2018 citing creative differences. Said Hjelvik at the time, “The experience of building a successful band has been fun and rewarding but has also been equally intense and challenging. Over the years, this has taken its toll. As we’ve been developing personally and professionally, our individual goals, needs and motivations have changed, leading us in different directions. Though it is a heavy decision to leave a life I’ve been living and breathing for the last decade, I feel happy and excited to explore new possibilities for the future.” Hjelvik performed on three albums with the band, the last of which was 2016’s ‘Nattesferd.’ He was replaced shortly after his departure by Silver and The Good’s Ivar Nikolaisen.
Kvelertak released its latest album, Splid, in February.
Aside from Erlend Hjelvik as it’s frontman and songwriter, Hjelvik features Rob Steinway on lead guitar, Remi André Nygård on rhythm guitar, Alexis Lieu on bass and Kevin Foley on drums.
More information about Hjelvik and their upcoming album will be announced on their website soon.
A short video announcing the band and album can be viewed below: