Thursday, 29 March 2012


NAME: Gravlund
THEY ARE: Raw, Primitive Thrashing Black Metal
FROM:  Tromsø, Norway
FOR FANS OF:  Dark Throne, Aura Noir, early Mayhem
LATEST RELEASE: 'Goat Funeral Night' (Unborn Productions)
SONGS TO CHECK OUT: 'Witches Tit", "Mark of The Beast", "Goat Funeral Night"

Gravlund hail from Norway and deal in raw, primitive sounding thrashing black metal, they take their cues from bands such as Darkthrone and Aura Noir and the end result is a caustic mix of Norwegian black metal and blackthrash, these guys keep things very simplistic and straight to the point throughout, there is no fancy bullshit and their debut EP titled "Goat Funeral Night" (released in 2011 via Unborn Productions) is a fierce aural attack which hammers it's way through 4 tracks of true Norwegian black metal with such crudely christened songs as "Witches Tit" and "Encrusted Wounds Laced With Salt"
The band remain somewhat of an unknown and mysterious entity, but are one the best I have heard from Norway in the black metal style in a long time and don't be surprised if Fenriz has this band featured in one of  his "band of the week" blogs. The band were the subject of one of my most recent blogs for the Terrorizer Magazine website, Here is the interview in full.

Please give me a quick background history on the band and who does what in the current line up?

The band started in October/November 2010,but the idea of starting Gravlund is a bit older.
We recorded our first demo late 2010.
This demo was,in my opinion,not very good.But the few people that heard it thought it was great.
This,(unexpected),reaction inspired us to write and record the songs found on "Goat Funeral Night"(GFN)
We uploaded two songs on youtube,and made a thrad on the forum for the oldest,and biggest metal magazine in Norway:Scream Magazine.
We got a great response from the people there,and a week later we got signed by Unborn Productions.
The line up for Gravlund in the studio is:
We are currently putting together a a line up for playing live shows,but its not 100% decided who will in the live band.
We will continue to record with the two members,though.
(No need to fix something that isn't broken.)
Your debut EP "Goat Funeral Night" was released last year, please tell the readers abit about this release and what they can expect from it, is this release still available? If so where can people pick it up from?
The tracks for "GFN",was recorded January 21-23 2011.
The only ambition with Gravlund,was to record some metal we could enjoy while drinking beer.Getting the stuff was not considered an option.
But as soon as I was done with the vocals,I realised  it would be stupid not to let people hear this.
So we put the songs "Witches Tit" and "Mark Of The Beast" up on the Scream Mag forum, just to  see what people thought about them.
The response was great,so a week later we had a deal With Unborn Prod.
Its released as a limited cd(250 copies)
"Goat Funeral Night" consists of 4 tracks of primitive  Black Metal,combined with a healthy dose of equally primitive/ugly Thrash Metal.
Simply constructed riff patterns and hateful screaming vocals.
I always loose my voice,when doing vocals for Gravlund,and actually ended up coughing blood the morning after the vocal session .
The way we record is very fast.
I send the drummer the riffs 2 weeks before we are supposed to do the session.
Then we record basick guitar and drums live.
Then I take the recordings home and flesh out the rest of the stuff,in the course of the next two days.
To make the recordings sound as if it was a live band,I will record the rest of the stuff as fast as possible.
We think this gives the music a "nervous energy",that people interpret  as enthusiasm,or something.
We've tried to do it more thoroughly,but it immediatly sounds boring.
So we'll never do that again.
(1'st take is almost always the best)
Musically I hear some Dark Throne and blackthrash influences but also some doomier aspects, which bands would you say fuel and shape the sound of Gravlund? Did you have a clear idea of how you wanted the band to sound when you first formed?
Theres no denying there's a huge Darkthrone influence in Gravlund.
Actually me and the drummer were listening to Darkthrone and Aura Noir,when we came up with the idea of forming Gravlund.
Also we've been massive fans of the classic Thrash Metal stuff from the 80's for years,so I guess its only natural that Thrash Metal Became a part of the sound.
Well I've been a fan of the "Forest of equilibrium" album By Cathedral since it was released,so when it was time to do the song "Witches Tit",it felt right to include a kind of doom part in there.
As for what excactly make up the sound of Gravlund,I'm not quite sure.
Almost all people who have written about Gravlund,has got a different perpective as to what bands we sound like.
(Apart from the obvious Darkthrone/thrash angle)
No we did not deliberatly set out to play BM.
Its one of my favourite subgenres of extreme metal,and when we formed the band I clearly stated that we would NOT play BM.
We knew it would be primitive and raw,but not necessarily BM.
But the first demo sounded like primitive BM,and thats excactly what the few people that heard those songs said:"This is old school Black Metal!"
I would describe your music as raw primitive thrashing black metal would you think that is an appropriate description? How would you personally  describe the bands sound?
I think youre absolutely spot on in youre description.The sound of Gravlund is an ugly bastard combination Thrash and Black Metal.
primitive riffs with intense drums combined with hateful shrieking vocals.
Why the name Gravlund? What does it translate into exactly? 
When you drive along the main roads of Norway,you will sometimes pass roadsigns  that says "Gravlund",whitch means you are driving past a graveyard.
The drummer was driving along with me,drunk,in the passenger seat,when we passed such a sign.
I drunkenly bursted out:If we ever form a metal band,we should call it Gravlund."
We've actually   had the name of the band for years.
"Gravlund" is of course the Norwegian word for cemetary/graveyard.
We thimk its a great name for a metal band.Theres a long tradition in metal with graves and cemetaries,and since we concider the band to be a tribute to the older styles of extreme metal(Black/Trash),we found this name to be appropriate.

What is the lyrical concept behind the band? Where do you find inspiration from to write lyrics?
Everybody knows what the lyrics in Bm are about.
The lyrics to Gravlund are written like this:I write down words and sentences on a piece of paper,over the course of ,say a couple of months,and when its time to record I listen to the track and write out what the lyrics should be.(Often changing what I have completely)
Then I just press "record",and basically just belt it out.
The vocals are always improvised,or semi-improvised anyway,so what ends up on the track is not always what is written down on paper.
This is a very rewarding way of working.We never know how a song will sound,until it is completely done.
But hey:If it sounds good,it IS good.
I find inspiration to write both lyrics and riffs,from hangovers.
Those moments of anxiety filled nervousness,from drinking  the night before are interesting.
Also Gravlund got a "secret" member:NEMESIS MAXIMUS.
He sometimes send us lyrics. 
Have you written much new material since your debut recording, what can we expect from the new songs, are they in the same vein? What releases do you have in the pipeline next?  Can we expect a full length in the not too distant future?
We have recorde a lot of new material.
The next release will be a splitt of some sorts.
We have played the material intended for this release,for a selected few friends.
They said it most deffinetly sounds like Gravlund,but a bit weirder,almost psychedelic even.
I personally think there is a little less Thrash Metal in the new stuff,compared to "GFN"
A full length is the next logical step,but first:The split
I think it will contain 4 or 5 songs by Gravlund. 
Are you an active live band? Have you played any shows yet or is playing live not an important thing for you at this point in time? Would could people expect from a Gravlund live show? What would be your ideal stage show/concept with the band?.
Gravlund has not plated live yet.
As it was impossible for us to do any shoes last year,we didnt even bother to put together a full line up.
But this year its a lot more convenient for us to do this.
Also in our part of the country,the conditions for metal are terrible,but I was recently made aware of how many people are in to the band.
There is actually a demand to see us live,so why not?
All the members of the band got family obligations.So I dont think its possible to do a lot of shows,just the occasional gig
We'll have to make those few shows we do,very special.
The ideal concept for a Gravlund show,will be 4 guys hacking away at their instruments,while svreaming their heads off.
I'm convinced the music will suffice.
After all the music is what got us signed anyway.
We have released very little info about the band,we haven't even released any band photos,so the the music is the only thing people have related to. 
What is your opinion on the current Norwegian black metal scene, are there any other BM bands or metal bands in general from your country that you currently feel an affinity with and would recommend to the readers out there? 
In my opinion the best Norwegian BM right now,comes from the Nidrosian BM scene.(Mare,One Tail One Head,Kaosritual,Dødsengel etc)
I have yet to hear anything less than fantastic from the people involved in the Nidrosian scene.
We also have the allmighty Faustcoven.Really looking forward to their new album,witch should be out soon.
Also looking forward to the new album from the evil thrashers Deathammer.
2012 stated with a bang with the fantastic new album by Nekromantheon,but I guess you all that one.
We are also massive fans of the bands from the Oslo death metal scene:Obliteration,Execration,Lobotomized and Diskord.
Oh and the doom rocking booze hounds in Devil(Eternal hails!!!)
We would like to stress the fact that we dont know any of these people personally,but we own their records.
Black metal has developed into quite a popular music style since the early-mid 90's getting a lot of mainstream attention etc, but you guys are going back to a more raw, stripped down and basic sound, what personally made you want to form a black metal band in the style as Gravlund? What inspires you personally to play "black metal"?
As I said before,the only reason for us to make this kind of music,was to make something we could listen to ourselves.
Its a boring answer,but its the truth.
I'm not going to say that we are on a mission to "make things right" or "save BM" or anything like that.
People can listen to what they want,we honestly dont care.
This is our version of BM,take it or leave it. 
 In your opinion how should a real black metal band sound? 
Those who have ears to listen with,will know. 

What other bands are members involved with? 
Me and the drummer got half an albums worth of unfinnished material for another project in a totally different style of music.(Not metal)
Also one of the members from the live band,is involved in something I think could be labeled as traditional heavy metal,but I haven't heard the material as
this is a fairly new project.
What things do you hate and despise about the modern extreme music scene, there must be some things that you hold on contempt? If you would see any aspect of the modern scene disappear what would it be?
I honestly dont know too much about the modern extreme music scene.
I spend a lot of the money I make on records,and buy mostly underground metal.
Since we released "GFN",We've been contacted   by people from the underground scene,and I have to say that these people are great.
We would not loose any sleep if people stopped using triggered drums though.
What things do you miss about the older days of extreme music?
The quality of the music,and the feeling that every album was grounbreaking and something new.
What are the future plans for Gravlund for 2012 and beyond? How can people check you out/get hold of your music? Many thanks for answering this short interview! Time to plug available merch.
We're starting rehearsals for playing live very soon.
I'm already preparing the members of the live band now,so that the rehearsals will be as effective as possible.
All the members live far apart,so this involves a lot of planning.
I know a split release will come soon,and I guess this will be on another format.(not cd)
We will play one local festival in July(I think),and a maybe one warm uo show before the festival gig.
Then we will continue to work on what I guess will be our full length album.  
People can buy "Goat Funeral Night" from
Thanx for the interview,Kat
Excellent questions

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