Interview with Varg Vikernes
"Hammer Of Damnation" Magazine (#03, 1993), by Niko Sirkiä
Lately there had been a wave of vampirism in the cold Norway. The traces led us to the ancient castle of Count Grishnackh...
Grishnackh, how has it been going today?
"Quiet. It's day outside and the sun shines... I hate sun. So I sit here in shadow... in a dark room and dream about night! I hope there will never be a new day", says the vampire Grishnackh and continues: "Hm... Burzum was "formed" early in 1991 as a project band beside my other band of which I have left. I did a demo in late 1991. 3 songs... later I included 9 more songs on that piece! The 3 song demo is available from DSP for an unknown price... write for details! First LP was recorded in January 1992, out in April 1992 (on DSP)! The second Burzum LP is recorded containing 8 tracks. It is called "På Svarte Troner" (it's Swedish or Norwegian and means something like "On Black Thrones" or so... -ed) and will be out on DSP late 1992... it was recorded in May 1992. Burzum is now a two piece band. Hellhammer is doing the drums. We will do an ep 7" probably on H.N.P. Records in Norway that will contain new (fucking ten times better) version of "A Lost Forgotten Sad Spirit" and a new track that will only be released on this 7" EP! Later we will do the third LP that will (of course) be out on DSP! Hm..."
Grishnackh, the man behind Burzum was kind enough to give us some background knowledge considering his band. It would be wise to take this debut LP to the subject... so, please tell some facts about each song on the LP.
"Feeble Screams..." (made in middle 1991) is a piece describing why I hate the feeble slave race. "Ea, Lord Of The Depths" (in late 1991) is telling how Ea looks like. "Black Spell Of Destruction" (made in early 1991) is a dream I had. When I Destroy the Earth with a Spell... may the dream come true! "Channeling The Power Of Souls" is a spell manipulating souls into worship... (made in early 1991). "War" is a song made to remind you of Bathory (and especially the end of their debut LP's B-side? -ed). Its lyric explain the pleasure of dying slowly in war... (made in late 1991) "The Crying Orc" of mourning because of natural hate of everything. "A Lost Forgotten Spirit" (made in middle 1991) is about grave desecration. "Disturb their rest and they shall haunt forever". "My Journey To The Stars" is a dream of mine (made January 1992). "Dungeons Of Darkness" is a track by Euronymous and me! We here create the feeling of entering the dungeons of darkness.
FULL OF HATE AND WINTER
All right, are you satisfied with your debut as a whole?
I am satisfied with the debut LP! It's full of hate and winter. I'm not totally satisfied with "The Lost Forgotten..." that's why I do it again on the EP!
And sincerely the LP is a masterpiece of Black Metal! As far as I'm concerned, I recommend you to order it immediately from Deathlike Silence... About the deal with DSP; it came true after Euronymous (the boss of DSP) heard the Burzum demo...
...and I guess he liked it. DSP is doing their job well! Only DSP is real!
You told that your second LP "På Svarte Troner" is already recorded... please tell something about it.
It's more dark and depressive... I think the first LP is more cold hate in a bit depressive way!... Anyway 2nd LP is more varied songwise!
Can you give any titles?
It contains of tracks as "Lost Wisdom" (early 1991), "My Key To Purgatory" (middle 1991) and "Dominos Sathanas" (early 1991) and new one as "Svarte Troner" (May 1992), "Den Onde Kysten" (January 1992), "Han Som Reiste" (May 1992), "Snu Mikrokosmos Tegn" (February 1992) and "En Ring Til Å Herske" (April 1992).
All these new song titles are in Swedish or Norwegian... use your dictionary to translate them!
Nowadays Burzum is a two-men band. Are you perhaps going to build a decent line-up? And why didn't you search for any members earlier?
Earlier I didn't need any other members to do Burzum. Now I got Hellhammer on drums for 3rd LP (and beyond). After third LP we will look for a bass player, a second guitarist and a synth player for live performance... It'll be fucking hard to find suitable members.
Have you already planned your stage show?
Yes, it will be a dark depressive live show! No fun, no mosh. Trend folk will be bored to death seeing Burzum live. We are no fun.
BLACKNESS IN MY OWN TOUNGE
About how Grishnackh makes the tracks for Burzum, he says: "It varies a bit! Some times I do some riffs and sometimes I do whole track!" Nevertheless you must be pretty fast in creating songs according to that your second LP is to be released very soon, and the debut has been available for only short while!
Hm... I did 15 tracks in 1991. I've done 20 tracks in 1992 (it's now end of July). I think the reason for this is firstly I'm unemployed and that enables me to dwell where I wish in the night! Deep dark woods, medieval sited, cold caves, and high mountains. My personal influences is purely dark persons to... so my dark essence is not ruined by any "light of god".
How did you practice your songs when you still were the only member?
I didn't! I think how they shall be and play them like that when I records them!
By the way, the meaning behind the name of the band isn't Blackened Undead Raging Zombie Under Mould as everybody thought (Who?- Santa Claus), but...
It means blackness or darkness in my own tongue.
WINGS OF DARKNESS
It seems Grishnackh didn't allow this interview slip at all to this "save-the-world" (fortunately!), because his answers to my question about his opinion on Norway legalizing the whale hunting was simply: "I worship death". The return to the paths of musical harmonies...? Ahm, what could be the most important elements in the music of Burzum and why?
I see my music as a whole. It's mournful to catch the spirit of the dark ones.
Do you think your music can be considered as art?
Black destructive art.
And if Burzum's music was a dinner course it would be...
A female human virgin for me to "drink"!
To the end, do you have anything to say about the future of Burzum?
The darkness spread its wings in the night. For every night that pass the wings reach new places, souls and feelings... the world shall be darkness!
I thank you for your thoughtful answers and time...
My time is endless...
Author: Niko Sirkiä (© 1993 "Hammer Of Damnation" Magazine Finland)