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The Umskiptar album is also a return-to-the-roots album for me, with a strong focus on atmosphere and wholeness rather than anything else. The vocals on this one however are more important than on any other album, with a total of 66 stanzas, some of them even repeated a few times, making up the lyrics of the album. The vocals are very important for the special atmosphere and are more important than on any other Burzum album, and more varied too and as honest as it gets. The concept of the album is Umskiptar (English = Metamorphoses), a deeply rooted European (i.e. Pagan) Stoic concept of changes. This concept was chosen in a world heading for a new Ice Age, and can therefore also be seen as critique of all the popular political movements of our age of lies.
- VARG VIKERNES
The concept and lyrics on Umskiptar are taken from Voluspa (The Seeress's Prophecy), the first poem of the Poetic Edda - a collection of Norse poetry preserved in the 13th century mediaeval Icelandic manuscript Codex Regius.
Change and metamorphosis are at the centre of Burzum’s latest album Umskiptar, concepts that, given the musical direction he has chosen, could not be more appropriate. Further from its black metal origins than ever before (aside from the neo-classical prison releases), Varg Vikernes has made clear his intention to abandon the purely black metal music with Umskiptar, to create what could be the first Burzum concept album...Umskiptar is a musical poem, brought to life by an ambient black-folk backing track, and those who see Burzum as a continually evolving and changing concept will get the most out of it. A few tracks overstay their welcome, and the tone-deaf vocals do mar the experience somewhat, but the strength of the story and potential for personal interpretation, allows Umskiptar to be the most emotional, complex, and honest Burzum release to date. - Loud Magazine 4/5