This is the second part to our “A Guide to (some of) the Best Metal Album Covers of 2012” posting last week. As we know, cover artwork was a big thing for Metal music in 2012. Many of them were epic, cryptic, nightmarish and more importantly, artfully executed. They helped to both enrich many listeners’ imaginations and to enhance the music itself; and this is why we’re covering them! In the second part to our guide, we keep exploring the stories behind some of these magnificent visual pieces. We’ve interviewed some of the designers and musicians involved with said art and they in turn opened for us new worlds of imagination an awe. Check it out!

Ihsahn once again takes us on a musical odyssey of sorts with his fourth solo release. After an amazing trilogy of albums, The Adversary, angL, and After, the Norwegian composer and multi-instrumentalist continues to surpass expectations with the masterpiece, Eremita.

For many, Ihsahn could easily be considered one of the most important metal musicians of the past 20 years. Yes it may sound like an overstatement, but the Norwegian’s groundbreaking work with Emperor, Peccatum, or on his previous formidable solo albums, is undeniable proof of his immense musical talents. His latest effort Emerita (his fourth under the “Ihsahn” moniker) only confirms that his desire to keep contributing to the advance of extreme music is as fervent and urgent as it was two decades ago. This is not a formulaic or “by the book” metal album, and although there’s a plethora of elements taken from traditional genres, this is foremost an avant-garde venture.