As I’ve recently finished to read Lords of Chaos a lot of considerations came to my mind.
First of all it was very interesting for me to learn that Norway is a particularly conservative and religious country. I had the completely wrong idea, maybe influenced by Sweden international image, that the country was a peaceful open and modern one. Strange and surprising to know that at least in the 90s it was very far from it.
It’s basic reaction, very conservative country that somehow forgot its pre-christian identity and History, youth violently reacting by spectacularly reject and oppose such christianity.
I devoured the book, it is so well written and showing contradictions and different versions of facts only by publishing interviews containing the same questions to different figures from the black metal scene of those years.
I find most of them completely confused on what their identity as a movement is. Some are satanists by default without real faith nor even effective knowledge of that philosophy, also satanism is a christian concept, how can you at the same time talk ancesters and be a satanist? The Northmen were pagans. At the same time some paganism seems more built up than some satanism in there.
They burned churches. Yes and? What did it bring on the table of the Identity discussion? Nothing. They wanted chaos? They didn’t had any. Norway seems today the same as it was back there. The scene had enough names for me to remember without searching for it. So we’re basically talking ground of the underground.
But at the same time, I understand them. I’m not the kind of burning churches, but I’m the kind that would prefer Odin right away. And I’m the kind that understands the rage in the music. Because yes, the music is astonishing. Varg can go fuck around and his pathetic egocentric self (along with his mommy managing his musical interests while he was in prison), but Burzum is just a genius. Some of those guys are so vile they make me sick. But they’re superb artists for the most.
So? Should we forgive them anything? No. But we can manage to keep them around to benefit from their art. As long as they’re composing music, which by the way in the history if humanity has always had more power than any empty church set on fire.