Trivium’s Matt Heafy reveals plans to release black metal album

The upcoming LP will feature Emperor's Ihsahn and Behemoth's Nergal

Trivium‘s Matt Heafy has revealed that he plans to release his long-gestating black metal album next year.

Speaking in a new interview, the frontman, who is currently working on Trivium’s 10th studio album, ‘In The Court Of The Dragon’, said his black metal record, featuring Emperor’s Ihsahn and Behemoth’s Nergal, is coming next year.

“During this [lockdown] I was able to finally finish my black metal record with Ihsahn from Emperor,” Heafy told Hatebreed frontman Jamey Jasta on The Jasta Show. “He’s been producing and co-writing that with me for about 11 years, and it finally comes out in the middle of next year, which should be fun.”

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The band project was initially named Mrityu, but Heafy revealed that after discussing his goals with Ihsahn, he changed the name to Ibaraki.

“It used to be called Mrityu, which I got from Ashtanga yoga,” Heafy said. “It means the concept of life and death – same thing as the ouroboros, same thing as the Japanese Enso, the idea that life and death are always symbiotic with each other.

Trivium's Matt Heafy
Trivium’s Matt Heafy. CREDIT: Frank Hoensch/Redferns

“I didn’t really know what to write about lyrically, and I was talking to Ihsahn because I’ve always loved Scandinavian mythology, Norse mythology, and Swedish mythology. I wish I could write about Thor and Jörmungandr, I love these stories. He’s like, ‘Yeah, but Matt, those have been done a lot, and you have your own rich history to tap into with your Japanese side.’ And then a lightbulb went off. I was like, ‘I need to just write about that.’ I started writing all the lyrics about Japanese stories because that’s something that hasn’t really happened.”

He continued: “There isn’t really a band that writes about Japanese folklore or the Shinto gods and goddesses and fictitious stories of Japanese history. So I changed the band name to Ibaraki, which is actually Trivium’s mascot – an easter egg in there – and the entire project is Japanese-themed. The art, the lyrics, I’m actually singing in Japanese. Ishahn’s on the record, Nergal’s on the record.”

Trivium’s In The Court Of The Dragon arrives on Oct 8 and follows last year’s ‘What the Dead Men Say’.

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Last month, Heafy revealed he contracted COVID-19 but recovered well after what he said felt “like a tour cold”.

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