21 Years Ago: LIAR OF GOLGOTHA complete Dancing Through the Palace of the Ungodly Beauty

Recording began on the 22nd at Via Ritmo Studios in the band’s hometown of Rotterdam and was complete on this day in 1995. Dancing Through the Palace of the Ungodly Beauty was released by Shivadarshana in 1996.

Jarl Flagg-Nidhoegg (ABSURD) wrote the lyrics for “The Strong Warlord”.

LoG recorded another two albums, in 1998 and 2000, before ceasing in the mid-2000’s.

26 Years Ago: MAYHEM live in Leipzig (Photos and Audio)

We just started playing live after a break which lasted 4 years, and the reasons were lack of members and rehearsalplaces. And songs. Now we did a couple of gigs, it was cool except that all the equipment fucked up on the 1st one, and Hellhammer was drunk and ruined the gig on the 2nd one… From now on we must have total prohibition of any use of alcohol before a gig, and if some in the band drinks, I will refuse to play. Well, except for shit like that it was cool! We had a real brutal show on the 1st gig with pig heads on stakes, corpse paint in the faces and that Dead cut himself up and was bleeding on the audience. In the end everything was a big mess of blood and pig brains hehe
We are going to take the show even further later, with craniums, bones, stench of rotting meat and lots of nice stuff like that on stage. If everything goes great, we’ll tour Turkey and Greece this year. Then we’ve the LP coming, and next year a tour in USSR, which hopefully will give us those money necessary to play in South America and other places. The dream is (for me) to play in Albania, China, Mongolia, North Korea, Kampuchea and all those countries!! But the other guys don’t want to do this, they believe that we’ll never get out of those countries again…

– Euronymous / Mayhem interview, Holocaust #4 1990

The infamous concert performed on this day in 1990. Recorded at the Eiskeller club which is today known as Conne Island in the district of Connewitz, Leipzig, Germany.

MAYHEM t-shirts being added to the distro this week

33 Years Ago: MERCYFUL FATE release Melissa

I was doing all the music at that time, so I just kept composing, kept composing because I loved to compose. Get up in the middle of the night. I remember when I did “Satan’s Fall” that was maybe within a week or two. Every night until 3AM, I was sitting with my guitar and then taking, finding the next part. Back to bed and up again. That was cool.
– Hank Shermann, 2015 Loudwire

21 Years Ago: MOONBLOOD record Siegfried (Die Sage vom Helden)

Considered by the band to not reflect their real concept, Siegfried was recorded during this month in 1995 and released on only 50 tapes.

In October, one month later, they released a Reh/Demo Tape that shouldn’t really appear in their discography as lyrically it didn’t fit in their concept. Therefore “Siegfried” was limited to only 50 copies, german written verses based on the Nibelungen Epos with Bathory-ish music underlayed. Definitely shouldn’t represent Moonblood in general.

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Interview: ASHAENA (Romanian Pagan Black Metal)

ASHAENA released their second album, Calea, earlier this year. A strong pagan metal album with an emphasis on glorifying Romanian cultural history with some traditional folk influence concentrated on a couple of songs.

Copies of the new album are available now in the distro. We talked to founder, guitarist and vocalist Cosmin about the history of the band and the cultural, historical and spiritual influences that converge in their sound, imagery and lyrics.

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Interview with Cosmin, 10 October 2016

The lineup has changed since the first album, do you think this change has also impacted the sound of the band?

All the time, new members, new spirits bring new ideas. Yes, it did change the sound to a better one, tho’ we had all the songs already composed. But yes, the new guys brought a very good vibe to the band.

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The production quality has improved too from the first album, what was the studio situation for Calea?

Calea is the first album totally produced by the band. We’ve decided to do everything by ourselves, starting the recordings and ending up with the mixing and mastery part. It was a great experience and we’ve learnt a lot. If you are able to learn from every thing happening into your life, then you have a good “setup” :)

Pagan bands often incorporate traditional instruments (as I think you did on the short ambient parts on the first album) and melodies into their songs, have you as much on Calea?

Most traditional instruments were put into “Tara Berladnicilor”, the only pure instrumental tune on the album. The are small parts on “Calea” as well.

You emphasise Introspective in your description, could you explain what you mean by Pagan Black *Introspective* Metal?

I came up with this term trying to catch our music true meaning. We are trying to awake people’s minds. We are trying to raise awareness and let people know that they should look more carefuly around them, there are a lot of things to see and understand, a lot of minor details everywhere around you. Introspective metal would be that kind of music that makes you thirsty for knowledge. Makes you dig deeper on the hidden paths or better than that, makes you dive into yourself and get you aware of what’s there.

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In another interview you referred to studying Românian history and mythology and finding “subtle conclusions which are more related to an ethical way of life”. Do you find from studying your native history you’ve found something you can and do apply to your life?

The most important concepts that I discovered in our ancient history and our mythology are common sense and unconditional help. Again, if the world would understand that common sense is one of the most important pillars of humanity, would be much better.

Do you think it’s something the modern world has just lost, or that the modern world actively turned against?

Modern world is fully covered by Media and false reality emitters. Our individual opinions and the power of choose what’s good or what’s wrong for us and the others around us are strongly influenced by media, unfortunately. We need to learn, to re-learn to live out of it. I am not saying to be uninformed. I say just to filter a lot what media is bringing out to the table.

Is there a specific historical period you are most interested in?

I was always interested in the Romanian ancient history. As a Cultural Anthropologist I have studied other cultures and the history of other people and places as well but I’ve always been attracted the most by our ancient history. I would definitely encourage people to read about, at least, the Dacian wars versus the Roman empire.

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Symbolism is clearly important, they appear in your logo, on the album cover and elsewhere. Could you explain their significance?

Aye, symbolism is another way of saying things. Indeed is more cryptic but is more visual. Is like having riddles spread around all your work. They are intended for the “trained” eyes and open minds. Alchemy, Magick, Kabbalah have the same root in our consciousness, in our world of ideas and their final destination is again, the same. All of them are leading you to discover the God within and make peace, understand and harmonize what’s within with the whole universe.

In relation to symbols and history, you have talked about an interest in the occult. Which, if any, aspects are you drawing from Romanian folklore and Eastern Orthodox? Where does occultism find a place in your music and lyrics?

I don’t have anything to do with the Eastern Orthodox concepts or ideas. I am not on that path. Not anymore. It is not suited for me and that would be enough said. I have started to walk the occult paths a long ago. I think I was around 14 years old. That would make 23 years of walking (I am not tired yet…). Romanian folklore is very gnostic, very dualistic. Is perfect for balancing the opposing forces. As I said above, if you start walking the paths of knowledge and study, more than that, understand what you study, then you start noticing things in everything is around you. You understand hidden meanings and then you make connections between them.

Last words are yours!

People should always stay true to themselves. They should always question everything and always try to understand and learn from everything they do. Above all these, common sense should be the main authority in someone’s life. Be good but not naive.

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22 Years Ago: GORGOROTH release Pentagram

We are very satisfied with Frost. He is also playing drums on our new CD “DҰD”. And about a permanent membership we have thought about it, and if there is any persons who should be worth it, it must be Frost, but it is also up to him. Ok.
Samoth is no longer joining Gorgoroth
– Hat / Gorgoroth interview, Nordic Vision #3 1995

Released by Embassy Productions (the label of Tragic Empire distribution, run by Phil Galliano) on this day in 1994.

BATHORY was THE true black metal band of all time. I know that we are nothing new and orignial, but that’s the way we want it. So many bands sound ‘original’, so we just want to keep the old black spirit alive, which was created by old gods.

Our influences come from the ancient gods of black metal, BATHORY, HELLHAMMER, VENOM, etc.. As for the lyrics; they are created by our sick minds, the influences for them come from evil woods, wanderin’ round in the dark and the freezing forests of Norway.
– Goat Pervertor / Gorgoroth interview, Tales of the Macabre #1 1993

“Pentagram” contain 8 hatefull track’s, very brutal, thou also melodic. This is pure, true Black Metal as it was ment to be. There is 6 new track’s + the two from the demo A Sorcery….thou a bit different. I don’t think its any big difference between our new and old stuff. Its black art.
– Hat, Gorgoroth interview autumn 1994

32 Years Ago: BATHORY release the legendary self titled debut LP on Black Mark (TONIGHT WE BLASPHEMY)

Released on this day in 1984 and influencing almost everything that followed!

I don’t know exactly how much it has sold. I believe it has sold very good, much better than we thought it would do. All I know is that in Sweden it has sold about 5,000 and in West Germany I believe it has sold about 7,000 in USA and other countries I think it has sold some thousands.
– Bathory interview, Blackthorn zine #2 1985

In the distro:

Bathory on Vinyl, Bathory t-shirts and hoodies, Bathory patches, other Bathory merch

I sing about the occult business and Satan because it all fascinates me. I don’t sing about it because I think it’s cool and just to jump on the Black Metal band wagon as you express it.
If I was into science fiction then I’d sing about that right?
I really feel sorry for those bands who use the occult business to benefit themselves about having mags writing about ’em and all that. This isn’t really just an image. I dress almost the same off BATHORY as what I look on the pix.
– Bathory interview, Blackthorn zine #2 1985

I just close my eyes and picture a scene. I write down every detail what I see and what I feel, what happens and so on. Then I sit down and try to compress most of the important parts into a story (I never want to write lyrics that don’t mean anything) I have it rhyme and check out if it is anything like the other stuff I have done so far. I mostly write the music first, then I come up with about 20titles and build the stories from the title. I sort out the good parts and rearrange the not so good parts and then I try to compress it all it is very simple really.
– Bathory interview, The Book of Armageddon zine #1 1986

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24 Years Ago: IMMORTAL release their self-titled EP (Unholy Forces of Evil)

We truly have the best scene… yes, especially the bands into “the black circle”. We have a war against the trend people… And of course we are ready to fight. We are vikings, but remember vikings were not nice men… They butchered people daily… So will we do…
– Immortal interview, Daemonium Aeturnus #2 1992

IMMORTAL’s transition from the strictly death metal demo in July 1991 to Diabolical Fullmoon Mysticism, recorded only nine months later, was dramatic! Somewhere between those two extremes they recorded the Immortal EP, released on this day in 1991 by Listable Records. An intro and two tracks, both re-recorded for the first album.

Drink of the moon and spit on the winds of life… into darkness ride for the darkness of my spirit… for Satan my black soul… tragedies blows at horizon and I have to leave for another world… where the sun freezes to dust…

20 Years Ago: MOONBLOOD record at Digan Tonstudio, Saxony

On this day in 1996 MOONBLOOD held a recording session and completed two songs. Fullmoon Witchery was included on the 1997 Encyclopedia Pestilentia compilation but Under the Abyssic Black Wings of the 3rd Angel was never officially released. Recording took place at Digan Tonstudio in Annaberg, Saxony (Sachsen) Germany.

The complete session is included on the official CD …of Lunar Passion and Sombre Blood which is in stock at the distro with all the other recent official MOONBLOOD releases.

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23 Years Ago: EMPEROR record In the Nightside Eclipse at Grieghallen – Norwegian Black Metal

From the Bård Guldvik Eithun (Faust) interview in Slayer #10:

The original recording found place the last two weeks of July ’93. But it was mixed in late November ’93, it should be mixed for hopefully the last time in March (the studio bill is starting to get really big). Anyway, there were some minor details that weren’t as they should be as well as the drums. They were a bit low in the mix and we also need more ‘click’ in the bass drums. I’m looking forward to hearing the final mix…

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The exact date of the seventh full moon anno 1993 was Saturday 3 July at 23:47 GMT. Add an hour for Norway. So I think it’s safe that the nearest full moon was the eighth cycle of 1993, on 2 August at 12:11 GMT.

EMPEROR’s classic In the Nightside Eclipse was recorded at Grieghallen with legendary producer Pytten under the waxing gibbous of July 1993!

Of course they are talking about July’s moon, this was just an excuse to look up some historical info. Most of the full-moons that year occurred early in the month: 1/8, 2/6, 3/8, 4/6, 5/6, 6/4, 7/3, 8/2, 9/1 then late 9/30, 10/30, 11/29, 12/28.

Today is 19 July 2016, we are in the last two weeks of the month and at 22:57 GMT it will be exactly the seventh full moon anno 2016!

Perfect time to mark this masterpiece recording!

update: Under an Anglian full moon, midnight 19 July 2016

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The album includes five new tracks, two from the mini album (‘I am black wizards’ and ‘Cosmic keys…’) and one from the demo (‘beyond the great vast forest’, which used to be called ‘My empires doom’). It is an ensouling masterpiece of symphonic and monumental black metal art recorded during the seventh fullmoon anno ’93.
The album is of course a progression from the mini album, the new tracks are more symphonic and atmospheric, but still brutal and intense. The album has a very professional and mighty sound.

In the distro: we have EMPEROR on vinyl including In the Nightside Eclipse DLP, EMPEROR CDs, various EMPEROR t-shirts and hoodies including In the Nightside Eclipse t-shirts, and other EMPEROR merch including In the Nightside Eclipse wall flags.

There are a lot of synth themes including on the album, the synths are used more as an individual instrument now. Synth is a big part of EMPEROR’s music. We also have a permanent keyboard player now (Sverd of ARCTURUS). I think the sound of evilness and melancholy can be created without synths as well, but synths also add a more orchestral and mighty sound which is very important for EMPEROR’s music.
– Samoth, Tales of the Macabre zine #1, 1993

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Emperor and Pytten mixing In the Nightside Eclipse at Grieghallen Studios, winter 1994