Former GORGOROTH Drummer Pens Book About Norwegian Black Metal Scene

Norway's Aftenposten is reporting that former GORGOROTH drummer Erlend Erichsen is coming out with his debut novel, which focues on the black metal music scene.

Entitled "National Satanist" (Nasjonalsatanisten), Erichsen's debut book already is being translated into French. Publishing house Damm is in talks with German and other foreign publishers as well.

Erichsen told newspaper Aftenposten that the early black metal bands that sprang up in Bergen "cultivated Norway's position as a dark and repressed country full of high mountains and cold forests. Even though there can be scary and criminal elements in the music, many Europeans see black metal as something that's genuine Norwegian."

His book is a novel, set in the 1990s when the black metal scene was born in Bergen. Some satanists were burning down churches at the time, and Varg Vikernes (BURZUM) was convicted of murdering a former band member. The book opens with a quotation from the murdered Øystein Aarseth, alias "Euronymous:" "We are inspired by our hatred towards humanity, life, goodness and happiness."

Erichsen said he can laugh now at such relative absurdity but says the quote sums up attitudes in black metal circles and in his book. He says he and most of his fellow musicians hated their audiences, and viewed them as flocks of sheep, which explains why they threw sheep heads into the audience.

He said he still has respect for the spiritual aspects and intensity within the black metal circles that he thinks are genuine. "I walked with flaming torches through the woods, and took it all very seriously," he said, but notes that his book is sarcastic. "The entire black metal culture is deranged, but incredibly fascinating at the same time."

He told Aftenposten that he thinks the black metal scene, with some exceptions, has been ruined by "drugs, spoiled brats, beer and commercialism." Pure black metal, he claims, can only be compared with opera. "It can also be difficult to access," he said.

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