Funeral Industries and Plastichead, a little more than twenty years after the first publication, offer the reissue of Ånden Som Gjorde Opprør and Keiser Av En Dimensjon Ukjent, two works, released at the time by the legendary Cold Meat Industry, which brought to the attention of a wider audience the name of Mortiis. For those who do not know the story we summarize it in brief: the Norwegian musician was one of the protagonists of the first vagaries of the black metal scene covering the role of bassist in Emperor and participating in a seminal album as Into The Nightside Eclipse. After leaving the band, Håvard Ellefsen (this is his real name) began a solo career dedicated to the exploration of ambient sounds, but grafting his black roots in the form of a strongly epic and glacially solemn aura, becoming in fact a precursor of that strand that today is called Dungeon Synth. It must be said that, at the time, the choice of Mortiis did discuss (something that will be a bit ‘the leitmotif of his entire musical journey, to see more clearly) a little’ because some considered him a copy of Burzum sweetened or even because of his presentation made up as a troll, something certainly original but equally grotesque impact. Beyond this, and listening to them again with pleasure after much water has passed under the bridge, it is undeniable the intrinsic value of these two works, rather homologous in content having been released a few months apart, as they are still carriers of an ancestral charm without appearing hopelessly dated, also because their minimalism induced by the comparison with the means available today, ends up increasing in any case the charm. The path of the Norwegian elf will move later towards a more modernist approach, going to forms of industrial metal by the fluctuating results and also far away from the attitude of the works of the early nineties. So is welcome the re-release of Anden Som Gjorde Opprør and Keiser Av En Dimensjon Ukjent, albums that Mortiis himself has decided to play live on several occasions in this end of 2017, something that will surely please many but that, in some ways, has the effect of a partial reverse compared to what he did in the most recent phase of his career. That said, I believe that the re-release of these works is very appropriate as an ideal snapshot of the creative ferment that was lived at the time in Norway, certainly related to the explosion of the black metal scene but also to the different stylistic rivulets that would follow.

1995 – Cold Meat Industry 2017 – Funeral Industries / Plastichead