The Pyro <chadxxxporn>

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band histery of the however long i keep it on hear lol 317 weeks ago
 
Most bands carve their niche through the rings of pop culture's trunk by sundry means or methods. For some, they cling to the credibility of musicianship and artistry, while others are simply known for debaucherous antics and defacing their own public image. Black metal legends Mayhem are known at one level for their technical prowess and innovation as musicians, but to a larger public, they are recognized for their outrageous and shocking history.

Mayhem were formed in 1985 by bassist Necrobutcher and guitarist Euronymous, and featured an ever-changing lineup that was regularly plundered by both death and the law. Over the years, Mayhem defined a sub-genre of death metal called Black Metal. While Death Metal indulged in gory themes, deep growling vocals, and speedy, flurries of brick-heavy chord progression, Black metal celebrated the decadence and affront that Satanism represented to the Norwegian Christian faith, and employed higher vocals and more melodic guitar patterns. Mayhem?s image was certainly more theatrical than previously defined, and they often employed cadaveresque stage makeup to accentuate this image, utilizing animal corpses to a nauseating pitch during their stage shows. In a recent noteworthy event during a Swedish show, one member of the audience suffered a concussion during the dismemberment of one animal on stage.

But while most people would only employ these elements to shock their audiences or gain notoriety, Mayhem were different. They had a cause? to rid Norway of the Christian scourge, and reinstate the pagan belief system that had been stomped out by a Jesuit society. While most bands merely sang, or growled, about riding through the country on horseback, digging up graves in search of sexual conquest, cannibalism, or burning down churches, Mayhem were actually doing it.

The influence of Mayhem?s activities as criminals and artists broke Black Metal to international audiences, and spawned countless other metal acts, but unfortunately, their music is largely neglected in light of their legal and personal problems, and ultimately, many feel that these problems are more interesting than their music.

One incident that committed Mayhem to infamy was the suicide of lead singer Death in 1991. Immediately upon discovering the body of their comrade, the band's initial conclusion was to snap a photo of the body for later use as cover art to one of their later releases, the Dawn of the Black Hearts LP. Hellhammer reputedly gathered Death's skull fragments and fashioned a necklace from them, while Euronymous cooked a stew of the remaining brain matter.

In the Norwegian Black Metal scene of the early 1990s, bands such as Immortal, Enslaved, Burzum, and Emperor comprised the inner core, but these bands were not opposed to violent competition between one another in attempt to out-do the others' reputations. However, they all had one common goal: to bring Christianity to its knees. The figurehead of this movement was Mayhem?s guitarist Euronymous. Euro owned a record store where the bands would gather to discuss and design various plots to rid the country of Christianity. Mayhem bassist Count Grishnack was the first to actually take a grand stance against the Holy church. In 1992, the Count burned two Norwegian churches to the ground. He was charged for the crime, but was let out of custody while awaiting trial. After this happened Euronymous predicted that the Count would do something much more evil and grand.

On August 10th, 1993 Count Grishnack murdered Euronymous, stabbing his bandmate 23 times. One suggested motive for the murder being that Euronymous? evil reputation "unjustly" surpassed his own, while many claimed that he was murdered as a punishment for violating the inner-circle by playing shows outside of Norway. The brutality of the murder itself, with its 23 separate wounds, was reputedly quite deliberate, with Grishnack attempting to outdo the homicide committed by a rival member of Emperor. Grishnack was never to be outdone. When Grishnack was arrested for the murder, a large amount of TNT was discovered on the premises, with plans to blow up a church on a holy day.

Grishnack, while in prison, went on to pursue the industrial-fused black metal project Burzum, which employed a dark electronic ambiance against black metal fundamentals. After several critically acclaimed releases, Grishnack, a notorious racist, denounced his previous accomplishments, because they were an offshoot of rock n? roll, which was created by black people. Grishnack still produces music, but primarily sticks to Norwegian folk these days. In spite of the lineup changes, Hellhammer has continued the name of Mayhem, though they have maintained a low-key profile. Their sound has changed with the years, and they have advanced as more technically proficient musicians. The sound, overall, is more polished, and at times conjures an organic ambiance.

The story of Mayhem may ultimately be more interesting than their music to most, but it was their music that ultimately spawned the current generation of underground metal and its uber-violent enthusiasts, which seldom see mention in the press. Against Mayhem, many of the reputedly sinister or evil bands you see today pale by comparison. Whether or not their influence produced anything worthwhile remains to be seen. However, their history coupled with their discography has secured them a place in rock history. Mayhem will likely attempt another international tour in the near future. If you see this name on a local bill, as I have in the past, you should either cautiously go, or stay at home, depending on the strength of your constitution.

 posted by The Pyro 

1 Comment:

Naya ♥ said...7/9/07
 
idk the end was funny!
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