Norwegian metal group The Kovenant, formed in 1992 by Stian Arnesen (aka Nagash, Lex Icon) and Amund Svensson (aka Blackheart, Psy Coma, Pzy Clone), was known simply as Covenant once, and even released their first two albums, In Times Before the Light in 1995 and Nexus Polaris in 1997, under the name. Trouble arose when an Industrial group also called Covenant sued them and forced them to change their name. Ironically, The Kovenant changed its musical style from a Symphonic Black Metal sound to a more electronically-influenced style (which the band called "Progressive Space Metal") shortly afterward with Animatronic in 1999, and they moved to a very Industrial Metal-influenced sound with SETI in 2003. Along with the stylistic change, the content of their lyrics changed from being dark fantasy-based to being mainly about the negative traits of humanity and Religion Rant Songs. Songs about outer space began with Nexus Polaris and continued after the retool, but became less fantastical. Opinions differ on whether this was Growing the Beard or Jumping the Shark, depending on one's musical preferences.
Their fifth official album, Aria Galactica, has been in Development Hell since 2003, to the dismay of many fans. The band has not officially split up (even playing live shows from time to time during the extremely prolonged hiatus), but its leader Stian Arnesen has been preoccupied with his other band Troll, and they reportedly cannot find a record label to release Aria Galactica on. After SETI, The Kovenant re-released Nexus Polaris and In Times Before the Light under their new name, though the tracks were kept in their original form, unlike 2002's remake of In Times Before the Light which was given a more Industrial Metal sound than the original.
Not related to Swedish Futurepop / EBM group Covenant.
- In Times Before the Light (made in 1995, released in '97)
- Nexus Polaris (1997)
- Animatronic (1999)
- In Times Before the Light (Remake, 2002)
- SETI (2003)
Tropes invoked by this band include:
- A God Am I: Examples can be found on all four albums to differing degrees, though their first two albums moreso than the others.From the Storm of Shadows: "I am emperor, and I...am...GOD."
- Album Title Drop: For Nexus Polaris on the track "Planetary Black Elements".
- Concept Album: Both In Times Before the Light and Nexus Polaris. SETI might also count to an extent, but it's less consistent.
- The Cover Changes the Meaning: The Kovenant's version of "Space Man" by Babylon Zoo is quite different take on the song.
- Cover Album: In an interesting twist on the trope, the band remade one of its own albums, In Times Before the Light, giving it a more electronic sound. It's basically The Kovenant covering Covenant.
- Creepy Circus Music: The remade version of "From the Storm of Shadows" has a creepy circus vibe, whereas it was nowhere to be heard in the original version.
- Drunk on the Dark Side: The lyrics to most of the tracks on their first two albums.
- Epic Instrumental Opener: The first two albums did this.
- Endless Winter: In Times Before the Light focuses on a combination of this trope and The Night That Never Ends. The phrase "Forever winter, Forever night" appears in a few songs, and the song "Through the Eyes of the Raven" appears to be about beckoning 'King Winter' to bring about an endless winter.
- Era-Specific Personality: The band members, who changed their looks and their stage names with the release of SETI.
- Evil Feels Good: Just listen to the lyrics to the songs on In Times Before the Light.
- Fading into the Next Song: Done with most of the songs on the remake of In Times Before the Light.
- "I Am Great!" Song: "Towards the Crown of Night", "The Dark Conquest" in fact most songs on In Times Before the Light have at least a line or two of this.
- "I Am" Song: "Towards the Crown of Night" is this for a couple verses.
- I Have Many Names: The band members.
- Instant Awesome: Just Add Dragons!: Particularly with their first two albums, such as the tracks "Dragonstorm", "Dragonheart" and "Last of the Dragons". Some of the CD art for In Times Before the Light included a medieval-looking dragon painting.
- Last Note Hilarity: "Bizarre Cosmic Industries" is a very beautiful piece with a long piano solo and great female vocals from Sara Jezebel Deva, but for some inexplicable reason, they chose to end the song with a rather silly "BOOOIIINNNGGG" sound.
- Lighter and Softer: The band has moved towards this over the years. Though SETI is by no means upbeat and cheerful on its own, compared to In Times Before the Light it is.
- In many ways the Genre Shift makes it hard to quantify things. Industrial is hard/harsh in a completely different matter to Black Metal. Most Industrial relies on very heavy, distorted drums but has a much slower pace, and Black Metal drumming is much faster but each individual drum sound is usually significantly lighter to its Industrial equivalent. Both genres often use very harsh vocals, but these effects are accomplished in entirely different ways. So as such, calling Industrial Metal Lighter and Softer relative to Black Metal is in many respects an apples-and-oranges comparison. Additionally, The Kovenant were never the most violent Black Metal band, they always used a very significant amount of lush melody.
- Metal Scream
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: They were about a 9 for their first two albums; it varies by song on Animatronic but they've generally never been lower than a 6 on SETI. But the Genre Shift makes it harder to measure its hardness by the same standards.
- New Sound Album: Both Animatronic and SETI. Word of God promises Aria Galactica will be one too.
- Nietzsche Wannabe: Subverted. The band's lyrics are heavily influenced by Friedrich Nietzsche, but they've arguably Shown Their Work.
- The Night That Never Ends: A subject that comes up a lot on In Times Before the Light.
- Ominous Pipe Organ: On the original In Times Before the Light.
- Pep-Talk Song: "Acid Theater"."Never do what they want you to do. Never be who they want you to be."
- Punny Name: "Lex Icon". Geddit?
- Puny Earthlings: The line "Feeble humans, behold me in my victory" from the song "Towards the Crown of Nights".
- Religion Rant Song: "Mirror's Paradise", "Neon", "Via Negativa". These didn't begin to appear until the name-change and genre shift.
- Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Particularly on Nexus Polaris.
- Soprano and Gravel: Done alongside Sara Jezebel Deva, who is best known as being the longtime female vocalist for Cradle of Filth, in Nexus Polaris. However, her vocals on the album (called "Starsong" in the CD booklet) are all either wordless background vocalization or simply backing up Nagash's vocals; she doesn't get any lyrics of her own.
- Spoken Word in Music: On Animatronic and SETI voice samples were used from time to time.
- Symphonic Metal: Originally Symphonic Black Metal, kept a lot of symphonic orchestrations even over the course of their Genre Shift.
- Take Over the World: The track "The Dark Conquest" from In Times Before the Light, is about doing this, and bringing forth the foreverwinter and forevernight.