Interview with Varg Vikernes
"Devilution" Magazine (08.04.2012) by Kent Kirkegaard Jensen

On "Fallen" a lot of the lyrics are on the topic of death, the mystery of death. You also say that your life is running out and going somewhere else. Are you more aware of your own mortality and what are the thoughts behind those lyrics?

No, I am not more aware of my mortality. The lyrics deal with the same as the "Belus" lyrics, only in a less mythological language, so to speak. They deal with the journey into the realm of death as a journey of initiation and a search for hidden knowledge.

"Belus" was originally planned to be called "Den Hvite Guden"? Why the change?

The title was widely misunderstood and took the focus away from the music, so I changed it. Anyway, it is quite common for artists to have a working title for their projects, and "Den Hvite Guden" was one working title for "Belus". The album was originally called "The Return of Baldur", by the way, but as we know now I changed that too.

From where do you draw inspiration for writing music and lyrics?

From Mímisbrunnr...

What can we expect on "Umskiptar"? What is the theme of that album?

The theme is "Völuspá". You can expect a musical journey taking you through the different moods of the poem.

You write that it is about "Völuspá". This old poem about norse mythology and I know Tolkien said, that he was inspired by it. Why did you choose to write about that? Can you maybe elaborate on the subject and tell our readers a little about it and why you chose to interpret it?

Well, I could write an entire book about the subject, and as you might already know I have already done so. It is called "Sorcery And Religion In Ancient Scandinavia", and if you have an interest in the subject I suggest you read the book. I chose to write about this and interpret the poem because it is a very important part of our European culture and history.

Burzum is taken from "Lord Of The Rings" and you even have a track called "En Ring til å herske"? What has the Tolkien-book meant to you?

It used to be (and I say that because it is no longer) a source of inspiration, both in relation to music and also roleplaying games (like D&D, AD&D, MERP/Rolemaster etc.). Tolkien used much European symbolism and mythology, and I think that is what made me interested.

What made you want to write music in the first place? How did "Burzum" come about?

You can read about that here, if you care to.

When you did the first three albums you wrote a lot of atmospheric and ambient tracks. Where did you find inspiration for tracks such as "Han Som Reiste"? And what was the purpose for creating music like that? (I myself have used "Han Som Reiste" as a meditative track at times.)

(Not answered)

A lot has been said and written about you and the murder of Øystein Aarseth. It was the moment when Norwegian black metal suddenly got widespread international attention. What do you think about your role in making a subgenre so known to the point that it is a major export industry for Norway today?

Actually, Norwegian so-called black metal suddenly got attention in January 1993, when I did an interview for "Bergens Tidende", where the journalist changed the entire interview and wrote a lot of nonsense instead of what I had told him, and Øystein Aarseth was never murdered; he was killed after having attacked me in his apartment.

My role in making black metal known was important, but only because Øystein Aarseth himself used Burzum to spread his idea of how black metal was supposed to be like in the metal underground in 1992 in particular, and later because the media misused Burzum and me to spread their own version of so-called black metal id est the tasteless parody we all know as "Norwegian black metal" today.

Would you have done anything different today had you been given the chance to do it over?

Sure, but spending time thinking such things is a waste of time.

Do you have any contact with the people from the Norwegian black metal community today? (Both those who we're in the bands back then and now)

No, I have no interest in so-called black metal or the people involved.

You've said that you don't like the "black metal" scene that exists today. What is it that offends you by it?

It's a tasteless parody of what it was supposed to be. I can add that I am not "offended" by it. I only ever think about it when asked questions like this.

You've written a lot about the ancient religions in Europe. Why (in the first place) did you decide to dig deep into that subject?

Because it is our culture and the foundation on which everything we built in Europe stands. Even Christianity is 90% Paganism and is thus more based on our European religion than on the Asian Judaism.

It is no secret that you've been very vocal about how the human races should not be mixed. Is it still your belief that the European bloodline has been gradually weakened?


You must have heard about a man called Breivik and the killings on Utøya.

To some extent his views mirror yours. What do you think of Breivik and his actions on Utøya and in Oslo? To some extent his views mirrors mine? Well, he is first and foremost a nutcase Zionist and a fanatic Christian Freemason, and his views are so "all over the place" we can actually say his views to some extent mirrors just about everyone's views. I must stress that he is first and foremost a Zionist though, and should be treated as one.

If you want my opinion on this you can read this.

You've said in earlier interviews ("Terrorizer", 2011) that you are now a father of four and married. How is that? Do you attend kindergarten, school etc. with your children or do you shy away in fear of being recognized?

Well, why on Earth would I fear being recognized? All I ever experience when meeting people who recognize me is praise and sympathy, thankfullness (for telling the truth) and even admiration (from music fans). I have yet to have an unpleasant encounter with anyone. And why would I have one? The media is telling lies all the time, but most people have the sense to check the facts on their own, and the facts can easily be found out there on burzum.org. So...

I don't answer questions regarding my family.

A lot of people have listened to your music through all these years and still do. Yet you seem not to want any contact with your fans. Why is that?

Generally speaking I have no interest in speaking to or meeting other individuals at all, and that's it really. Some individuals want to meet strangers for positive feedback or for something else, others don't. I am in the latter group.

I know that several concert organizers would like to book you to do a show. As an artist, isn't it tempting to say yes and get your music out to the masses and feed of the energy from the crowd?

Well, I am not some egocentric leech feeding of the energy of others, and I really just want to stay home and live a quiet life. I never go to concerts, either, for that sake, and have serious problems understanding why anybody does.

I know our readers would like to hear from you on the subject of being in prison for so long and the myth surrounding you because of the events that led up to your incarceration. What do you feel about that? Can you understand why people are curious to know more about you, your actions and your thoughts afterwards?

I don't know. I think most who are curious just want to find the truth, because they are honest and because they understand that the media story is just lies.

Because unlike other convicted murderers, you were already known before this happened. And I can only assume that maybe you tire of being asked about it all the time, but have you thought about how this maybe will follow you as long as you are an artist, producing music and sticking your head out, so to speak?

Yes, I have thought about that, but there is not much I can do about it, so I don't spend time worrying about it, so to speak.

And a few final questions. With "Belus" in 2010, "Fallen" in 2011 and "Umskiptar" in 2012 it seems you've hit the same creative ore of productivity, that sparked Burzum in the first place back in the beginning of the 1990's. Can we expect another album already in 2013 or what are your immediate future plans for yourself and/or Burzum?

Well, I think I might take a break from music and spend some years building a house instead. Maybe I have the interest and will to make music in the evenings, maybe not. Time shall tell.

Thank you for your interest, Herr Jensen.

Author: Kent Kirkegaard Jensen (© 2012 "Devilution" Magazine Denmark)

In other languages: Dansk

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