© & ® Varg Vikernes. Do not reproduce, respect the copyrights.
There is much that can and should be said about this book. Initially I intended to unveil all the lies in this book in a thorough and systematic review, but when I had written twelve pages and still had only gone through 80 pages of the 400-page book I gave up. There are better things to do in life than diving into such a pool of mud.
I dare say the vast majority of all the statements made in this book are either misinterpretations; taken out of context; misunderstandings; malicious lies made by enemies; a result of ignorance; extreme exaggerations; and/or third-hand information at best. This includes the statements attributed to me!
The authors could have avoided this easily before they ever published this book, but they chose not to. Why? If they had done something as simple as to ask me about the different rumors and accusation I would have been able to make it clear that the information they had received was not true. Had they done some proper research that would have lead to the same conclusion. They didn't because the result would have been a far less intriguing book, containing fewer amazing stories and causing less confusion. Now why would the authors want that to happen? They want to sell books and most likely they have their own political or religious agenda too - like we all have.
When I use the term "confusion" I am thinking about the impression I got from reading this book. There are so many contradictions in this book it can confuse just about anybody. The information provided to us in the book doesn't make sense! We don't get the information we need for it to make sense. The whole book is littered with contradictions and of course to me it makes sense, because I know what is true and what is not, but to any other reader it must be very confusion.
Further it is clear to me that the authors are very selective when it comes to their use of sources for the book. They never interview people who can easily invalidate or undermine their own spectacular theories and further ignore all facts that would have made it clear to the reader that they are way of track! A good example is their speculations regarding the motivations for burning churches. Why do they discuss pyromania
as a possible motivation? What on Earth makes these two amateur-writers believe they have seen something the psychiatrists didn't see? If pyromania had been a motivation I can assure you the psychiatrists would have told the media, and media would have told us! The truth is that they ruled pyromania out completely as a motivation after talking to the suspected arsonists. Moynihan's and Søderlind's speculations are so silly it's like comparing the motivations of a war veteran to those of a serial killer just because both of them have killed several people!
Indeed there is another point in context with their use of sources; where are the people supporting my claims and my version of what happened? Why do the authors let all my worst enemies give their side of the story while not a single friend of mine is interviewed, why do they let my enemies viciously lie about me like that without even giving me the opportunity to defend myself? Including some edited answers from me that are taken out of context in the book is not enough. That doesn't make up for letting Aarseth's friends and all kinds of people I have never even heard about spread deceit like that. The lies are so tendentious and absurd it shock me, yet not as much as the fact that the authors let them air much statements without even questioning their veracity, or indeed asking for my side of the story. When 90% of all the statements made about me in the book are blatant lies that makes the whole book pretty worthless.
In one of the new chapters in the new edition they start out by talking about some mythical interpretations I have made regarding the possible Extra Terrestrial origin of life on Earth. Then suddenly they go on about "Nazi UFO's" and secret "Nazi" bases inside the "Hollow Earth". Now what on Earth has that got to do with my theories regarding the origin of life on Earth? As if that isn't enough they go on by interviewing a Dr. Michael Rothstein, a Jew by the way, in general terms on the subject of UFOs and the link to National Socialism. Again I can point at their odd choice of sources; why do they give a Jew the opportunity to air his thoughts on this subject to begin with? Of all the people in Scandinavia why do Moynihan and Søderlind want you to sit down and listen to what this Jew has to say about this subject? Do they expect this Jew to have anything positive or indeed insightful to say regarding our mythology? Indeed he doesn't even talk about my theories, but instead the authors and him build some smoke screen trying to get the reader's attention away from what I
was talking about. I
was talking about mythology
, not "Nazi UFOs"! Besides; what has that got to do with "The Bloody Rise Of The Satanic Metal Underground" anyway? Why do they mix theories about "Nazi UFOs" - supposedly built by the Third Reich and flown by "Nazi"s from secret bases in the Antarctica - and my interpretations of Norse mythology? It is as irrelevant as it would be to talk about The Church of Satan as a source of inspiration in context with the Black Metal underground of 1991 and 1992.
But of course, they do that too! I am even accused of having read La Vey's "Satanic Bible". They even interview people about these guys and their philosophies as if they played a role in the so-called "Rise Of The Metal Underground". Now tell me; do they know if I have read books by these men or not? They could have asked me, of course, but instead they just assume I and everybody else have. Well, just like I have never listened to Venom I have never read "The Satanic Bible" or any other books by La Vey. I have read a booklet by Crowley once, unfortunately, but that's all. It was a load of crap, and I find it immensely suspicious that the authors "forget" to tell or fail to find out that Aarseth, I and everybody else
in the Norwegian Black Metal scene in 1991 and 1992 despised
both Crowley and La Vey and everything they stood for! We didn't even need to read their books to realize that they were a waste of time, and our views on this were never a secret - indeed everybody in the metal underground knew our views on this! DSP - Mayhem's own record label - even used pictures of La Vey with a line over his face (a prohibition sign over his face) on at least one of the records they released to express their contempt for him (I think it was my own "Aske" EP
by the way). Why? Because Aarseth too thought La Vey was nothing but an American capitalist pig! I am insulted by the fact that they list some American clown like La Vey, or some pervert mental case like Crowley, as an influence to anything I have ever done or said!
The authors of this book on the other hand even interviewed La Vey about his allegedly influence on our movement and the people involved. Why? It must be because Moynihan or Søderlind wanted
the metal underground to have been inspired by La Vey! Perhaps Moynihan is a member of The Church of Satan and wanted to give it some credit and influence on a growing movement? In any case it is all lie-propaganda and I am sure the authors of this book knew that perfectly well!
I mentioned Venom and the fact that I never listened to their music. In fact the only person in the whole Black Metal scene in Norway who had
listened to Venom was Aarseth (although he still claimed he liked them a lot I - luckily - never heard him play any of their records). Everybody else in the scene either hated Venom or didn't even know who they were. As an example I can tell that the first time I even heard about them was in 1991! So contrary to what the authors claim, with the possible exception of Aarseth, not a single soul took Venom seriously, not a single soul was influenced by Venom, not a single soul even liked Venom - and that includes Hellhammer of Mayhem too (Necrobutcher wasn't a part of the scene at the time, as he had a break from playing music). Still they keep nagging about Venom throughout the book, and list them as some sort of origin to the whole movement and the ideas it was built upon. The fact that I wore a Venom T-shirt in court does not change this fact. I wore it because it had the text "Black Metal", and for no other reasons.
I could go on and on exemplifying how ludicrous this book and the theories of the authors really are, but I have better things to do. The authors have done such a bad job I don't know if I shall laugh or weep really. They build the book on absurd and stupid assumptions, they give credit to all the wrong people (like Venom and The Church of Satan as mentioned), they interview all kinds of completely (to me) unknown people who obviously have no insight into or even good knowledge about the subjects discussed and the authors don't understand one bit what Black Metal was about on 1991 and 1992. After reading this book I am left with a feeling of pity. I pity the writers for making such fools of themselves. I pity them for their ignorance. I pity them because I know how embarrassed they will be when they and everybody else realize how worthless this book really is.
Alas, this book serves only one single purpose and that is to create a myth around my name and to mystify me. If that was their objective they have indeed succeeded with their work. Well, the book seems to have served one other purpose too. The authors have managed to fill the heads of a generation of metal fans with lies. What could have been a righteous revolt has been made into some pathetic, embarrassing, brain-dead, impotent and traditional poser-culture best exemplified by bands like Dimmu Borgir - and indeed Venom! In the start of the book they ridicule me for my allegedly paranoid conspiracy theories, claiming it is ludicrous to believe the Jews run many important establishments in Norway when there are so few of them in Norway. Well, why would we need many Jews in Norway for them to pull the strings in our society when we have people like Søderlind, with a Jewish philosophy of life, who are more than willing to carry out their work for them? He is even a member of the ultra-Jewish International Humanist and Ethical Union in Norway, which even has a Jewish leader, so he is working for them whether he likes it or not - whether he understands it or not. All Church of Satan members, all members of the International Humanist and Ethical Union, all O.T.O. members, all Freemasons, all Christians, all Communists and so forth are all working for the Jews. They can ridicule me for my so-called paranoid conspiracy theories as much as they want, but it sounds pretty dumb when the people who ridicule me for this are themselves actively working for Jews and for Jewish ideologies and philosophies, like Søderlind is - and possibly Moynihan as well.
Throughout the book the arsonists are accused of actually strengthening Christianity in Norway. This is said over and over again, seemingly in an attempt to make the arsonists look like idiots. In the book they also state that 88% of the Norwegian population are members of the state church. Yeah, maybe that was correct in 1995 when they wrote this book, but in November in 2003 we could read in the newspapers in Norway that for the first time in history a majority of the Norwegian population is actually not members of the state church! Today only 49% are members of the state church in Norway! I won't take credit for being the reason for that, although I would like to think I have contributed to this development, but I will adamantly claim that their theory Christianity has been strengthened in Norway because of the church arsons is obviously proven wrong.
"In all wars the truth is the first victim". They have imprisoned me, at times silenced me through different means and I can in fact thank my perception that I am even still alive. I can respect anybody who wants to fight me and what I stand for in a honorable way, but I have no respect for people who spread lies behind my back and attempt to soil my memory like Moynihan and Søderlind have done with this book - all while I have been in prison and already down on one knee, engaged in fights elsewhere. I might be unable to properly defend myself against such spineless and dishonorable attacks today, but nothing lasts forever. I might even receive some help ex machina
and I am confident the tide will turn in favor of the truth.
The pig-system has tried to strangle me and destroy me as an influence on others for more than ten years now. They understand that it was a mistake to sentence me to 21 years in prison for something any normal man would get 8 or 10 years for. And this is not just something I am making up. I read this in a Norwegian newspaper in 2003, a town paper in Bergen, in an article written by law students under the title "Kong Salomo og Jørgen Hattemaker" (that translates as "King Salomon and George Hatter", meaning "there's a difference between a king and a cat"). Even regular law students in Norway have opened their eyes to this fact. Normal people have a sense of justice, and although they don't necessarily agree with me in any way they know it was not right to give me 21 years in prison.
So what can the pig-system do? Like Nietzsche said: "It is not the human considerations of the Christians, but the impotence of their human considerations that prevent them from burning the rest of us at the stake". For that sole reason they cannot overtly get rid of me. All they can do is to destroy my name and make sure nobody with a right mind will ever listen to me or take me serious. That is where people like Søderlind and Moynihan, and the media, becomes useful to them. They have tried to have me declared insane two times, but all the four psychiatrists I spoke to said that I showed no signs of insanity whatsoever. The psychiatrists whom I spoke to in late 1993, even described me as "unusually cultured and polite", "very (or "highly") intelligent and knowledgeable on many areas", "very (or "highly") patient", "in complete control of his emotions" and so forth. With such good reports it is hard for them to attack my name using the truth, so they turn to lies. The same applies to the arrests made in context with the Aarseth case in 1993. They all know that I have no fault whatsoever for the others to end up with sentences. When the police arrested me I said nothing. I didn't even tell them my name. Had the others done the same they would have gone free all of them, and me too. Of course the people involved know this and they are embarrassed by this fact. In 1995 to this book was completed some of them hated me and wanted to get back at me for killing Aarseth, and they did that by spreading lies.
The authors of this book or their sources claim I left a bloody fingerprint by the crime scene, they claim I was no match for the experienced investigators, they claim I boasted to a girl in Oslo about Bård Eithun's murder, and so forth. It is all lies, and had the authors done their job better, they would have known. In fact it puzzles me that they don't know, or perhaps they just don't care and prefer the lies? In 1996 the chief investigator was interviewed in "VG", to my knowledge the largest newspaper in Norway, in context with another case, a murder of a girl called Birgitte Tengs (see photo). In this interview he was hailed as the best tactical investigator in Norway, and in this interview they say that he had outwitted all the criminals he had interviewed with one single exception. That exception is also named in this interview, and that was "Varg Vikernes". The bloody fingerprints was a desperate attempt by the investigators to make all the others involved convinced that I had done it, and it was only when the guys like Bård Eithun, Tomas Haugen (Samoth) and the others were convinced that I had for no apparent reason killed Aarseth that they began to give testimony against me - and in the process against each other. This was a very intelligent move by the police, but it was a scam! There were no fingerprints. They had the fingerprints of the guy who founded the body, but they never had mine. In court the fingerprints were never mentioned, neither by the prosecutor nor by my councilor. Had they been real, had the police really had my fingerprints in blood, I am pretty sure that would have been an issue during the trial!
Although the investigator obviously succeeded in outwitting the authors of this book too, he never succeeded with me - as he stated in that "VG" interview - and the claim that I left my fingerprints in blood at the crime scene is obviously proven wrong.
As for me boasting and bragging about different crimes to all the guys in the scene, as claimed over and over again in the book, that too is a lie. When I was preparing for the lawsuit against me by the Oslo municipal lawyer and the insurance company I used a new councilor and his comment after reading through all the police interviews was that he had never before read such an amount of bullshit in his life. Not a single witness had actually heard from me that I had admitted to any crimes. They had "assumed" that I had, based either on my "smile" or my "silence" when they brought up the subject, or something like that. They assumed that I was responsible because it was the general consensus that I was responsible for these crimes. Now tell me, is that "boasting" and "bragging"? I think not. Because of this the prosecutor used only one single witness in each case. The others were useless as all their information was second-hand or third-hand information based on different peoples' assumptions. Bård Eithun was the sole reason I was convicted for burning Holmenkollen chapel - because he was there himself and said I was too. Tomas Haugen (Samoth) was the sole reason I was convicted for burning down Skjold church - because he was there himself and said I was too. Jørn-Inge Tunsberg was the sole reason I was convicted for burning down Åsane church - because he was there himself and said I was too. None of the other witnesses were even brought into court - and of course the prosecutor never needed anything more that this. There was no other evidence suggestion I was guilty. Snorre Ruch and Andreas Nagel was the sole reason I was convicted for the killing of Aarseth. There were no other evidence. A signed contract suggested I had either sent a contract or handed it to him personally a day or two before he died, but that would never have convicted me in any case. Like I said there were no fingerprints, and no other technical proof either. I was found guilty and sentenced to 21 years in prison solely because the testimony of these witnesses.
I can add that all these witnesses were young (from 18 to 22 years old), they had no experience with dealing with the law, they were mislead by the media and the police into believing I had brutally murdered Aarseth to take his place or something like that. The police told them - and this is information I have from them directly - that the police first and foremost wanted to get me. Bård Eithun even suggested in 1998 (when a judge interviewed him in court) the police had told him to give testimony against me to get back at me for killing Aarseth.
In court in 1998 not a single witness testified against me. Two of them showed up and told the court they had given false testimony against me in the trial of 1994, one of them showed up and refused to say anything, and the final two witnesses didn't even show up. Still they managed to find me guilty of all charges and sentence me to pay 33 million Norwegian Kroners and an annual 12% interest.
Instead of pointing at the fact that I was found guilt of these crimes and sentenced to 21 years in prison based solely on dubious testimony from Aarseth's friends the authors of this book try to ridicule me and make me look like an idiot. I hold no grudge against the witnesses today, because I understand that it is not easy for an 18 or 22 year-old with no previous experience with the law to know how to relate to them. When the best investigator aided by a massive media coverage - a bloody campaign by the media to get me convicted - it is not easy to resist. At the time they wrongly believed I had no understandable motivation for killing Aarseth at all. The media or the police surely never told them I had defended my life. Why would they protect me in any way when they had been manipulated and fooled into believing I had murdered their friend? It was not until years after they - or some of them anyway - found out and realized that Aarseth actually planned to torture me to death. Had they known that back then perhaps things would have been different, but they didn't, and I cannot blame them for that. I forgive them, because I understand them. I have been there too, naked in a cell, with no mattress or even a carpet, with the light on 24/7 and police officers telling me I am charged with first-degree murder. I was prepared for that and knew how to act (simply shut up and get some sleep, and wait until the cops have to let you go on lack of evidence - perhaps after a week, a month or even a year, but eventually they have to let you go). I say that because I don't want anybody to give these guys any heat because of their failures in 1993 and 1994. Forgive and forget.
To the authors of this book I can only say it's embarrassing to see how you regurgitate the lies of the police and media. Perhaps now you understand how I can call people like you unknowing (?) or ignorant minions of the Jews?
Another point in this book review would be that the Black Metal scene I was a part of was born in late 1991 and died in early 1993. That is like a one and a half years period in the lives of the people involved. It all happened at least eleven years ago. From 1993 Black Metal became something else, something created by the stereotypes and lies of the media and made into the gutless and commercialized scene we see today. It became something that had little if anything to do with the Black Metal scene I was a part of. The reason for that was not my interview with that newspaper in January 1993, but the fact that the media didn't want to listen to my explanation to this horribly bad interview or to what any of us had to say. Everything became distorted beyond recognition by the journalists and ended up like the messy crap presented to us in "Lords Of Chaos".
I can only say I am puzzled by the fact that things we said or did when we were teenagers could have such repercussions to a music scene. We were like twenty people in all back then, all contributing in some way to the end result in 1993, and look at Black Metal today! Nothing is left of what once was. In Oslo we see Fenris of Darkthrone as the only one left, sitting in a pub drinking beer and longing for the days when it was something original and special. The others have left or have followed the stream into the commercialized and trendy Black Metal scene of today.
Like I said the authors of this worthless book haven't even managed to figure out what Black Metal was all about - why it came to be to start with. Although not really related to this book I will tell you.
It began as a result of the fact that Death Metal had become commercialized and trendy. All the bands in 1991 sounded and looked alike. They even recorded their albums in the same sound studios. There was no originality or artistic integrity left whatsoever. We called it "Tampa production" and "Swedish production". The bands were even political correct.
We had arrived at this conclusion before Dead committed suicide, but indeed his suicide did accelerate the process. Darkthrone were the first to revolt against Death Metal, although it was rather half-hearted. They recorded their album in mid 1991 and released it in February 1992 on Peaceville - a large and commercial label in England. As part of their revolt they had satanic lyrics, however that was not something new. Darkthrone had always has satanic lyrics, even on their Death Metal album. The second band out was Burzum. The debut album was recorded in January 1992 and was released on DSP in March the same year. It was printed in less than 1000 copies, yet we were amazed by the fact that it sold out very quickly. People loved this new and original underground phenomenon. The production on the album was thin, the sound bad, the vocal shrieking and it sounded like a rotten garage band - the exact opposite of the streamlined and commercial Death Metal bands! Even the structure of the songs was different though, as the traditional verse-chorus-verse-chorus-solo-verse-chorus structure was completely abandoned. Instead Black Metal told a story musically as well, much like classical music or film music really. Darkthrone and Burzum were not alone though. In Bergen the guys in Amputation and Old Funeral formed a new band in 1991, called Immortal
. Since Darkthrone had a satanic concept and Burzum an occult or mystic concept they needed to come up with something else. That was the quintessence of the revolt; originality! We had to create something new and original, or else it would be rip-off and "not true" to the new spirit. Immortal
released their first album in September 1992, with an icy concept focusing on the spectacular winter-nature of Norway. Enslaved too joined the revolt, and yet again we saw a new concept; they focused on the Norse heritage. For a while they wandered in the dark, not knowing what to do, before they came up with this solution. Since Darkthrone and Burzum (named Black Metal by Aarseth and DSP) had become known as Black Metal the other bands felt a need to show individuality on that front as well. Because of that Immortal
claimed to play Holocaust Metal and Enslaved Viking Metal. The extreme focus on originality and individuality dictated that you could not copy - or as we said "rip-off" - others in any way. When Thou Shalt Suffer joined in and changed their name to Emperor the spirit had begun to weaken, although only slightly. By the end of 1992 it became "trendy to be anti-trend". This revolt was destined to fail, as it obviously would be impossible for all the bands to be unique in all ways. When Enslaved and Emperor released their split-LP in January 1993 (or perhaps in December 1992) it had become a trend. Only because of the media did the different bands become known under the Black Metal label. Immortal
even tried to protest when they were called a Black Metal band, but eventually they gave up too. The spirit had died. There was no longer a revolt in Black Metal. It became commercialized and streamlined just like Death Metal had been some years earlier.
In 1991 the guys in Darkthrone were 17 to 19 years old, I was 18 years old, the guys in Immortal
were 17 and 20 years old, the guys in Enslaved were 14 (!) and 17, the guys in the later-to-be Emperor were 17. Hellhammer and Aarseth were around 22. Necrobutcher was not a part of the scene from 1990 to 1993, because he was busy elsewhere and had a break from playing music. Darkthrone and Mayhem lived in or near Oslo, Immortal
and I (Burzum) lived in or near Bergen, Enslaved lived north of Haugesund and the guys in Emperor lived outside Notodden. We rarely met each other or spoke to each other, but we had some sort of contact - mostly by mail. To credit Aarseth or any other persons as the "planners" of this scene is in other word rather far fetched.
The other aspect of this scene is of course the ideological. The revolt in that respect was simply "to be the exact opposite of everybody else". When the trendy Death Metal bands sang "coca-cola burns the woods" we would sing "burn down everything" - or like the Burzum lyric (Spell Of Destruction) "The world's tragedy is served at my feast" or something like that. The Rock'n'Roll concept of "make love not war" was replaced by "make war not love", and so forth - again seen in Burzum in the "War" lyric: "We must never give up war". The authors of "Lords Of Chaos" have seen the "evil for the sake of evil" in this period, but they fail to understand why we focused on that. It was a revolt, not primarily against the society we lived in or Christianity or even our parents - as could have been expected from teenagers. More important than anything we revolted against the trendy Death Metal bands and the commercialized Death Metal scene!
So in short Black Metal was all about originality and not sounding or being like anybody else. Like I said it was destined to fail in staying pure and true to these ideas, as new people joined and began to rip off the other bands. The clone bands, be that Dimmu Borgir or whatever, came as a huge wave in 1993, when the media "exposed" the "satanic underground", and the original idea of Black Metal was lost forever.
The crimes committed in 1992 were a result of the same driving force. Some even argued against burning churches because it was no longer original - or perhaps used that as an excuse not to participate, I don't know. If there was a deeper meaning to any of the crimes I will not tell here and now, but of course people don't do things without a reason.
The spirit of Black Metal was all about individualism, artistic integrity, originality, strength of character, contempt for the followers and finally creativity. It is clear to all of us that some of the people involved in the 1991 and 1992 Norwegian Black Metal scene were indeed nothing but followers, but in any case that is the true spirit of Black Metal.
And you tell me: how much of that spirit is left in the Black Metal scene we see today? How much of this spirit did the authors of "Lords Of Chaos" actually unveil in their book? Even on this fundamental point these authors have failed miserably in unveiling the truth.
To sum it all up: don't buy this book.
Thank you for your attention.
Ringerike Fengsel, Norway
28th of June 2004