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CULT OF LUNA - Vertikal (10 Year Anniversary Limited edition Boxset)

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Release date March, 1st

10 Year Anniversary Limited edition Boxset
Limited to 1.000 copies

4x LPs Boxset
All colour vinyl copies
Thick printed paperbag LP

Vertikal I - AB - clear w/ marbled black
Vertikal I - CD - SideA/SideB Silver/White
Vertikal I - EF (Demo Versions) - clear w/ marbled white

Vertikal II - SideA/SideB  black/white

We were very young when we signed a multi album deal with Earache Records. In fact, some of us hadn’t even crossed the twenty line yet. 

Between 2002 and 2008 we managed to write and produce four albums and do the touring that came with it. After we kept our part of the deal, we were exhausted.

The writing of Eternal Kingdom had been energy draining and we needed a break. During the years that passed we realised that if we were going to continue, we had to do something different. We also found out the hard way that when you shut down the machine it takes quite a lot to get it going again. We had no label and all we knew was that we wanted to do something that felt like we were breaking into new territories.

Somewhere Along The Highway and Eternal Kingdom were inspired by the landscape of Västerbotten, the county we are from. We realised that there was only one way to go for us: to the city, into the future. Making a droney John Carpenter-esque album would be too easy and we’ve never been about taking the simple route. I was studying film at the time and had been floored by the aesthetic of German expressionism. This resonated perfectly with Erik Olofsson, who had just got into Italian futurism. This was a real challenge.

Before we even started to write we had talked extensively about what kind of colour scheme we wanted to use, what the band photos would look like and how we wanted to record the album to make it sound like a machine. That was the thing: when we finally got the machine started again, we aimed to become one.

I had started to experiment with different tunings and one day I tuned down the lower B to G# and the main riff of what would later become Vicarious Redemption appeared from nowhere. I put a lot of effort into that song to make it a reference point of where we were going musically.

This would also be the first album where I had the full vocal responsibility. When we recorded two demo tracks in order to have something to show when we started to shop for labels, I had to do the vocals in one night and one morning. I remember leaving the studio after spending the night recording and feeling that this would never work out. I knew that taking over the vocal responsibility from Claes would be big shoes to fill, but maybe they were too big? I thought I sounded like a horse crow and if things didn’t improve, I needed to figure something out. Maybe a different vocalist? Luckily, and maybe by the grace of the metal gods, things did get better and we managed to record 30 minutes of music in just two days.

We put in a lot of effort to realize our vision of the stale, artificial city in all aspects of what an album is. The way we played guitar (only down strokes), the production, artwork and band photos, everything was done with the vision as a guide.

Vertikal is the album where we had the most precise vision of what we wanted to do and worked hardest to transform it from an idea into reality.

A lot of things happened during the years between Eternal Kingdom and Vertikal and I could continue writing for ages but this will do for now. Ten years have passed since its release and what felt like a rebirth of the band, the band that is still ongoing with new goals and missions. This box that we are very proud of consists of everything we recorded during the Vertikal session including the two demo tracks.

It’s a full circle kind of thing. At the time we had no label and now we are releasing it on our very own. Life is strange.

Johannes Persson

Umeå December 2022