Satyricon Accepts that ‘Church-burnings & murder, they’re part of our history’

Published on:

Satyricon is a legendary Norwegian black metal band that’s been going strong in various forms since the early 90’s. While a long-time household name in their homeland (the band won a Norwegian Grammy for Best Metal Album in the early 2000’s), one could argue that in many ways, Phil Anselmo helped put them on more of a global stage as he often praised them in the press, and had Pantera take them out on tour.

He even had a short-lived project with Satyricon frontman Sigurd “Satyr” Wongraven, but it ultimately fell apart due to Phil’s spiraling drug addiction at the time. In 2018, Satyr recalled:

“Being brutally honest, Philip and I could do EIBON without Fenriz and without our late brother Killjoy, but I think that we should have finished it when we were working on this back in the late ’90s [and] early 2000s. But, frankly speaking, it was Philip‘s addiction at the time that ruined this whole project. That’s all there is to it. [We] can talk about this and that, but that’s what it comes down to. At the time, he was beyond fucked up.” He continues:

“Yeah, but he really was. We were in the studio trying to do things. I’d come out from the recording room, [and] I’d find him lying, passed out on pills, heroin, whatever, on the floor, with his entourage surrounding him, not wanting to interfere or do anything that could offend him, because he was the big guy. And then I’d be thinking to myself, ‘What the hell is this? I love this guy and he’s a great musician, but I’m a black metal guy; I’m not a Pantera fan. And when I travel from the other side of the world to come work, I’m here to work, not to do drugs.’ So, for me, that was a deeply frustrating period that really upset me. But I consider Philip one of my very best friends and an outstanding musician, so, in one way or another, I would love to do more music with Philip at some point, that’s for sure.”


Anyways, back to Satyricon. The band recently released a new project, a nearly hour-long instrumental called Satyricon & Munch. In a new interview about the project with Louder, Satyr spoke about many topics, but zoomed in particularly on their storied black metal roots & history.

With black metal having a bit of a renaissance the past few years, he seems frustrated by newfound opinions of younger fans who weren’t there for the genre’s formation and formative years:

“We can’t subscribe to some teenager in Germany’s idea of the purity of black metal. I refuse to relate to people like that – people who weren’t even born when we were moulding the whole thing. They know nothing about it.”

Satyr would know, having been close with Euronymous, the infamous founder & guitarist of the legendary band Mayhem who was later killed by a former bandmate.  “I had my ups and downs with Euronymous, but he was a true philosopher. I spent so many nights, so many hours, talking with him about black metal. His thinking was a huge influence on all of us. This was in 1992, so for someone born in 2002 to tell me I’m not doing it properly? Oh, thank you!”

He goes on to address the ever-looming elephant in the room about the infamous violence of the early black metal scene:“Church-burnings and murder, they’re a part of our history. If that’s an obstacle that people have to overcome, then I can’t work with them. I’m not gonna distance myself from the scene I grew up in. I’m not gonna apologize and, a lot of the people who personally have something to answer for, they’re my friends. They did what they did, they were prosecuted, they served their time and they were released. That’s how society works.”

Listen to the band’s new project below and be sure to check out the full interview on Louder’s website (linked above).