BATHORY
Black Metal / Folk Metal / Thrash Metal • Sweden

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Bathory was the project of Tomas "Ace" Börje Forsberg (better known as Quorthon, 17th February 1966 - 3rd June 2004). Bathory was a landmark band in the history of black metal. Most second wave black metal bands were influenced by the ground work laid down by Bathory. The name was taken from Erzsébet (Elizabeth) Báthory, a 17th century Hungarian noblewoman who lived in Csejte (now Cachtice, Slovakia), accused of torturing and killing hundreds of girls and young women.

Early years (1980s)

Bathory was formed in Stockholm in 1983. Founder Quorthon, a seventeen-year-old guitarist, was joined by bassist Hanoi and drummer Vans. After various name changes (beginning with Nosferatu, then Natas, Mephisto, Elizabeth Bathory and Countess Bathory) they finally settled on Bathory. Their first recording deal came that same year, when Quorthon managed to secure the consent of Tyfon Grammofon's boss to record two tracks for the compilation Scandinavian Metal Attack.
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Under The Sign Of The Black MarkUnder The Sign Of The Black Mark
Import · Limited Edition
BACK ON BLACK 2015
Vinyl$18.38
$78.16 (used)
Bathory [Vinyl]Bathory [Vinyl]
Import · Limited Edition
BACK ON BLACK 2014
Vinyl$17.67
$21.23 (used)
The Return of the DarknessThe Return of the Darkness
Plastic Head America 2010
Audio CD$12.64
$49.95 (used)
Twilight of the GodsTwilight of the Gods
Plastic Head Distribution 2010
Audio CD$10.72
$10.00 (used)
HammerheartHammerheart
Plastic Head Distribution 2010
Audio CD$13.00
$19.99 (used)
Nordland INordland I
Import
Black Mark Germany 2003
Audio CD$10.71
$11.15 (used)
The ReturnThe Return
Import · Limited Edition
BACK ON BLACK 2014
Vinyl$18.14
$21.18 (used)
Jubileum Vol.1Jubileum Vol.1
Import
BLACK MARK 2006
Audio CD$10.19
$8.54 (used)
Jubileum Vol.2Jubileum Vol.2
Import
BLACK MARK 2006
Audio CD$10.09
$10.08 (used)
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King Diamond - The Best of King Diamond CD Sealed Mercyful Fate Venom Bathory King Diamond - The Best of King Diamond CD Sealed Mercyful Fate Venom Bathory USD $11.92 Buy It Now 2 days
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BATHORY Discography

BATHORY albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.25 | 31 ratings
Bathory
Black Metal 1984
.. Album Cover 3.91 | 21 ratings
The Return......
Black Metal 1985
.. Album Cover 3.56 | 29 ratings
Under the Sign of the Black Mark
Black Metal 1987
.. Album Cover 4.34 | 41 ratings
Blood Fire Death
Black Metal 1988
.. Album Cover 4.17 | 45 ratings
Hammerheart
Folk Metal 1990
.. Album Cover 4.13 | 25 ratings
Twilight of the Gods
Folk Metal 1991
.. Album Cover 3.49 | 13 ratings
Requiem
Thrash Metal 1994
.. Album Cover 3.11 | 11 ratings
Octagon
Thrash Metal 1995
.. Album Cover 3.92 | 16 ratings
Blood on Ice
Folk Metal 1996
.. Album Cover 4.07 | 11 ratings
Destroyer of Worlds
Thrash Metal 2001
.. Album Cover 4.28 | 13 ratings
Nordland I
Folk Metal 2002
.. Album Cover 4.23 | 12 ratings
Nordland II
Folk Metal 2003

BATHORY EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Scandinavian Metal Attack
Thrash Metal 1984
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Bathory / Tankard / Rage
Black Metal 1990

BATHORY live albums

BATHORY demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

BATHORY re-issues & compilations

.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Jubileum, Volume I
Black Metal 1992
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Jubileum, Volume II
Black Metal 1993
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Jubileum, Volume III
Thrash Metal 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Katalog
Black Metal 2001
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
In Memory of Quorthon, Volume I
Black Metal 2006
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
In Memory of Quorthon, Volume II
Black Metal 2006
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
In Memory of Quorthon, Volume III
Black Metal 2006

BATHORY singles (2)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Twilight of the Gods
Black Metal 1991
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Blood on Ice
Black Metal 1996

BATHORY movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

BATHORY Reviews

BATHORY Blood Fire Death

Album · 1988 · Black Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Vim Fuego
Listen closely to this album and you will hear simplicity.

Yep, nothing complicated or overly technical here, just a damned fine metal album. One-man-band Quorthon kept the recipe simple. The riffs are basic but memorable. The solos sparing, but effective. Most of the drumming is simple snare/kick with the odd fill, and played at different tempos. Quorthon was not an opera singer, but he put everything into the vocals. There is the odd atmospheric bit, like galloping horses and spectral choirs, but overall, it is pared back to the absolute basics of metal.

You can hear the origins of much of the raw black metal sound of Darkthrone and Mayhem here. Perhaps the biggest difference is Bathory's warmer, fuller production. It seems like Motörhead's philosophy of "everything louder than everything else" put into practice. There is a noticeable static/white noise edge to a number of the guitar parts. When Quorthon lets rip with a throaty growl, like at the beginning of "For All Those Who Died", you can almost imagine the studio sound engineer pulling his hair out as needles and gauges across the studio console redline and overload. A couple of tracks, like “Holocaust” and the title track, are full of mighty Nordic imagery, Viking warriors on a quest for Valhalla, war axes raised high in battle. Moreover, because the music is so simple, it has an air of majesty. It demands attention. This is not background music. You have to notice it; you just don't have a choice. A peek at the lyric sheet hints at a vein of humour hidden in plain sight. Check "Pace Til Death" for example. It is an ode to playing fast and living fast and could have been lifted from a Motley Crüe album. It is impossible to tell from the delivery. In addition, Quorthon has had fun with acrostics on some of the other tracks– take the first letter from each line of the lyrics and you get a message. "The Golden Walls Of Heaven" spells out SATAN repeatedly, while "Dies Irae" gives us the message "CHRIST THE BASTARD SON OF HEAVEN".

Minor silliness aside, 'Blood Fire Death' is an essential album for fans of black and death metal. It is one of those odd releases with a foot firmly in both camps, and can be appreciated by fans of both genres.

BATHORY Bathory

Album · 1984 · Black Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
siLLy puPPy
Named after the famous Hungarian countess Elizabeth Bathory who is the most famous female serial killer and torturer of young girls in history, this Swedish group may well be the first black metal band. Not only did they take their band name from the track “Countess Bathory” from Venom's “Black Metal” album, but they also took the inspiration provided by the imagery and improved the music to move beyond the proto-thrash sounds of that album but kept the lo-fi production to evolve the sub-genre another notch.

Main man and founder Quorthon in effect saw the next step in what Venom started and ran away with it ushering in the reign of Scandinavian extreme metal. The history of black metal is as murky as its kvilt lo-fi tendencies but is really a step-by-step amalgamation of ideas that built upon what came before but on the eponymous debut album by BATHORY we get a lot of the attributes of the second-wave of black metal already presented in its infancy in 1984.

This is an interesting album that provides on this slightly less than 30 minute musical journey a snapshot of the evolution of black metal within its short duration. For such a short album the first 3 minutes are dedicated to an ambient mood setting bleakness before kicking into the initial track “Hades.” The first few tracks sound musically more like NWOBHM tracks with Judas Priest coming to mind however the lyrics, delivery and attitude are Satanic and evil. By the end of the album there is clearly less NWOBHM influence and sounds closer to the second wavers of the 90s. A must for black metalheads looking for its roots.

BATHORY Bathory

Album · 1984 · Black Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
1967/ 1976
Only 27 minutes to one of the most important debuts in the history of Heavy Metal. A truly seminal album. Frankly, however, a far cry from the modern Black Metal. Not for the lyrics but for the style, Venom clone. Moreover, the production is very minimal, with also wrong mixes. Even in this last case, very seminal album!

In short, "Bathory" is an album became more special when others musicians have decided to copy icongraphy and lyrics, rather than the music it contains, however, of great value. A closer look, then, a simple idea but that it has very fruity.

BATHORY Twilight of the Gods

Album · 1991 · Folk Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Warthur
For the final album of the classic viking metal trilogy that began with Blood Fire Death, Bathory occupy a space closer to the epic narrative thrash metal of Blood On Ice than the preceding Hammerheart, which still retained certain elements of their former black metal style. Less immediately gripping than the preceding albums, the album has a melancholic and contemplative atmosphere, with slow thrash riffs and long acoustic interludes emphasising this. It's said this was intended as the band's swansong, and I can believe it: it masterfully captures an air of wistful nostalgia for past times which can never be reclaimed. Not quite a classic by my reckoning, since I really have to be in a receptive mood to fully appreciate it, but still a grand finale to the journey begun in Blood Fire Death.

BATHORY Hammerheart

Album · 1990 · Folk Metal
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Warthur
Originally, Bathory had recorded Blood On Ice as a followup to Blood Fire Death, but on reflection Quorthon was concerned that the loyal Bathory fanbase wouldn't embrace that album's folky-thrashy-operatic brand of epic storytelling metal. So instead the band released Hammerheart, which took a similar approach to songwriting but added masses of black metal riffs to create an incredible wall of sound, and a revolutionary album which served as the blueprint for much Viking metal to come. (In particular, Enslaved's career has been based on first learning to match the sound of Hammerheart, and then taking its progressive inclinations still further.)

Leaning more and more towards long, epic tracks based around the sagas of the pagan North and more or less abandoning the band's Satanic past, Hammerheart completes the sonic transformation begun on Blood Fire Death in admirable form and is the second masterpiece from Bathory's classic Viking metal era.

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