Extol - Biography


Very similar to their previous logo. Only been used for their 2013 release so far.

Only used on The Blueprint Dives, but an altered version is found on their self-titled album 8 years later.



Extol was formed in Bekkestua, Norway by drummer David Husvik and guitarist Christer Espevoll, who were both 16 at the time. The two had jammed together since fall 1993 and wanted to start a band. Christer's brother Peter, 14 was recruited for vocal duties. Bassist Eystein Holm joined right before their first gig in May 1994. Extol wanted to expand their musical style beyond regular heavy metal music. The style change necessitated another guitarist, a position Emil Nikolaisen of the band [band]Royal filled in 1995.

The group soon garnered a reputation in the local scene. In January 1996, Extol made their first record appearance on a Norwegian metal compilation called Northern Lights. The album featured other local Christian artists Antestor, Schaliach, and Groms. Steve Rowe of Australian Christian metal band Mortification released the compilation on his record label, Rowe Productions. The band ventured to Stockholm, Sweden two months later for their first show outside their homeland. At the end of 1996, Nikolaisen departed so he could devote more time to Royal. He would later form an alternative rock band called Serena Maneesh and release a self-titled album in 2005.

In 1997, Extol released an independent three song demo entitled Embraced. A studio album was recorded at the end of the year even though a record label had not signed them. Almost a year passed before Endtime Productions picked up the band. Their debut album, entitled Burial, was released in December 1998. The album was licensed in the United States on Solid State Records, and in Japan on Avalon Records.

Shortly after, the band played their first shows in The US at Cornerstone Festival and Texas Rockfest. Extol conducted a four-week tour with Swedish rock band Blindside in summer 1999. An EP was released in November entitled Mesmerized. It featured three remixed tracks from Burial, which were reworked by Swedish industrial groups Raison d'être and Sanctum, and three other songs; a recently recorded one, an outtake, and a track from the Japanese release. The reception from fans was generally negative. Holm soon left the band and was replaced by Tor Magne Glidje, who played bass in the Norwegian metal band Lengsel.

Extol returned to the studio in December 1999 to record a follow up album. In June 2000, their second studio album, entitled Undeceived, was released. The release saw their music become "harder and darker" than their previous work, opting to move towards a death metal sound. The song "Ember" proved to be a popular song among their fans. Then Ole Børud left the band, so Glidje switched over to guitar, and John Robert Mjåland joined as bassist.

In 2001, another EP, Paralysis, was recorded; it was only released in Sweden. This EP featured a cover of "Shadow Of Death" by the American thrash metal group Believer, whom the band considers to be a great influence. After Paralysis, Glidje left the band to focus on his other project, [band]Ganglion, and Ole returned to the line-up. After Undeceived was released, Extol was no longer obligated to Endtime Productions, and they signed with Century Media in 2002. Their album Synergy, released in 2003, showed an even greater appreciation of the band Believer. The music on the album is very similar to Believer's style of thrash metal. Following the release, Extol toured Europe and US with the Swedish progressive death metal group Opeth.

In June 2004, Ole Børud and Christer Espevoll left Extol to "invest their time and energy elsewhere". Taking their place as permanent members in the band were the return of Tor Magne Glidje and Ole Halvard Sveen, both from Ganglion, that merged with Extol when four out of five band members ended up playing in both bands.

In 2005, the band released what could be considered their most diverse album; The Blueprint Dives, or "Blueprint" for short. A music video was shot for the song "Pearl". The album was nominated for the Norwegian Grammy, Spellemannprisen, for best Norwegian metal album in 2005. Also, The Blueprint Dives was voted for the Top 5 metal albums of the year list by the readers of the biggest newspaper in Norway, Dagbladet. Afterwards, Extol toured Europe with Mastodon, God Forbid, and Opeth, and US with Winter Solstice, Becoming The Archetype, and The Showdown. On August 9, 2007 the band announced through their MySpace page that they are currently on a hiatus. Glidje, Mjåland and Sveen went on to form Mantric, signed to Prosthetic Records. Husvik joined Dr. Midnight And The Mercy Cult, which includes members from Turbonegro, Apoptygma Berzerk and Satyricon.

In 2012, Extol started a documentary known as the Extol: Of Light And Shade.

On April 23, 2013, Extol announced that their fifth album, Extol, was to be released in June. Upon this announcement, the single "Open The Gates" was released for streaming on YouTube. Indie Recordings released the album on June 21 in Norway, Germany, and Austria, and on June 24 worldwide. Facedown Records released the album on June 25 for North America. The album debuted at No. 23 on the Billboard Top Christian Albums chart.