Onward to Nidaros: New Book Documents Trondheim’s Black Metal Scene

Cult Never Dies, the fantastic publishing outfit commanded by Dayal Patterson, forges onward with a pair of new books set for release this September. Today, I wanted to focus on Ancient Black Art: Nidrosian Black Metal, a book of photos, artwork, lyric sheets, flyers and essential documents compiled by scene devotee Josh Brown — working with the friends and family of the late Steingrim Brissach (aka Mehimoloth). For those who don’t know, Brissach was the singer for the mighty Celestial Bloodshed and one of the guiding morningstars of Trondheim’s black metal scene.

Norway’s place in black metal is well-documented, but from a regional perspective, the focus is mostly on Bergen and Oslo. But the story of Norwegian black metal is not limited to the big names associated with the heady days of the early 1990s. Trondheim, which was once called Nidaros and served as Norway’s capital during the high middle ages, is home to its own set of local legends and masters of black metal art. Followers of Dayal Patterson’s work may recognize bands like One Tail, One Head and Vemod from Black Metal: Into the Abyss, and so it’s exciting to see a compendium emerge for those who want to delve deeper into the shadows. The book also includes coverage of Mare, Kaosritual, Whoredom Rife and many more!

Josh Brown provided us with some details behind the project and why it was so important to him to honor Brissach’s memory:

“I started this two-part project more than two years ago, and from day one it has always been created as a tribute to the late Steingrim Brissach. I have always been surprised no one had previously set out to put together a much-needed tribute to such a unique individual who had left such a big and long-lasting mark on black metal in his short time on this earth.”

Indeed, even if he’d only left us with Cursed, Scarred and Forever Possessed, that would be a glorious legacy on its own. Josh went on to describe the trepidation some felt about the project, along with how they eventually came to lend him their support:

“I had approached a few of his close friends with my interest in obtaining material to piece together a tribute to their fallen comrade and fellow band member. I believe they were all (and rightfully so) very skeptical at the start as they are very protective of their friend’s memory and legacy, which has been something I have become very protective of as well.

As time had gone by, friendships began to grow and my true intentions were seen, I was granted access to lots of great material in regard to Steingrim and the amazing Nidrosian black metal scene he had been a major factor in creating. I was very lucky my good friend behind The True Mayhem Collection, Finn Rodland, who already had strong friendships within the Nidrosian scene, had agreed to help me see this project become a reality. Later, I had the great honor of becoming friends with Steingrim’s sister who became involved with helping me create something special for her brother.”

Ancient Black Art: Nidrosian Black Metal is due for release in mid-September, as is Streams of Ancient Wisdom: The History of Dutch Death and Extreme Metal.