EMPEROR frontman Ihsahn (real name: Vegard Sverre Tveitan) says that his solo music has been influenced by "the bravery" of Kanye West's "Yeezus", which has been described by some as the controversial rapper's most divisive album.
"Let's be honest, as a person, the character, he's not the most easy to empathize with," Ihsahn said of West in a recent interview with the Czech Republic's Metalshop TV (see video below). "But sometimes your relationshhip with the person, the artist, if they act the way you don't [like], you bring that with you when you listen to the music. But in spite of that, there's no denying that it's so brave. And I think the kind of megalomaniac ego that goes behind it makes it that genius; that is so brave. There's no commercial thought when you do an album like that, when you just scream out this lyric: 'I am a God.' It's crazy, and I love it."
Ihsahn continued: "I have this theory that the really new creation in music, the real genius happens in the underground, where there's no money and people just do it for the artistic ambition, and all the way at the top where's so much money that they don't even care, and they can do anything. And there's all the rest in the middle who try to do the 'right' things and [make] those compromises to get there."
Ihsahn's latest solo album, "Ámr", was released in May via Candlelight/Spinefarm.
EMPEROR hasn't released any new material since 2001's "Prometheus - The Discipline Of Fire And Demise". That album was composed and mostly played by Ihsahn, with guitarist Samoth already forming his next band during its production.