Ten albums into their career, Behemoth released what many considered to be their masterpiece, 2014’s The Satanist, which landed at the top of most metal outlets’ year-end best-of lists. Faced with the daunting prospect of following up such an acclaimed effort, the Polish extreme metal band is back with their newly released 11th album, I Loved You At Your Darkest.
We sat down with Behemoth frontman Nergal at Sacred Tattoo in New York City to discuss the new album, and in Part 1 of the chat (watch below), we asked him about the pressure, if any, he felt heading into the studio to record a follow-up to The Satanist.
Nergal, who famously battled leukemia in the years leading up to The Satanist, told us, “When I came from the dead, so to say, I really felt fearless. It really felt like having a carte blanche, which is starting from scratch. So doing the 10th album, The Satanist … I came out with a whole new approach to life and to our career.”
“I [knew] for a fact that I’m no immortal, and that there might not be another Behemoth album after [that], so we just gave it all we could… And I guess that it did the trick — it worked out great at the end of the day.”
As for the pressure to follow The Satanist with I Loved You At Your Darkest, Nergal remarked, “This is Behemoth redefined … we don’t want to compete with ourselves. To put it in a nice metaphor … does Jupiter have to compete with Mars? … They stand out and they shine equally bright.”
I Loved You at Your Darkest was released on October 5th, and received a stellar review from Heavy Consequence. The album is available for order at this location, while the band’s fall North American tour dates can be found here.
For more of Nergal’s thoughts on both The Satanist and I Loved You At Your Darkest, watch the video below, and stay tuned for future clips from our sit-down with the Behemoth frontman.