Black Metal / Crust Punk / Death Metal / Heavy Metal / Doom Metal • Norway
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Darkthrone is a black metal / death metal / crust punk band formed in Kolbotn Norway in 1987.

Darkthrone was previously known as Black Death.



Darkthrone is an influential Norwegian black metal band. They formed in 1986 as a death metal group in Kolbotn, Norway. After embracing the black metal style in 1991, they became a driving force in the Norwegian black metal scene. For most of this period Darkthrone has consisted of just two musicians; Fenriz and Nocturno Culto. They claim to be influenced by punk and have sought to remain outside the music mainstream. Recently their music has incorporated more crust punk traits.

The band that would become Darkthrone formed during 1986 in Kolbotn, a small suburb of Oslo. They were a death metal group by the name of Black Death, and its members were Gylve Nagell, Ivar Enger and Anders Risberget. In 1988 the band changed their name
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DARKTHRONE Discography

DARKTHRONE albums / top albums

DARKTHRONE Soulside Journey album cover 3.92 | 29 ratings
Soulside Journey
Death Metal 1991
DARKTHRONE A Blaze In The Northern Sky album cover 3.88 | 42 ratings
A Blaze In The Northern Sky
Black Metal 1992
DARKTHRONE Under A Funeral Moon album cover 3.71 | 33 ratings
Under A Funeral Moon
Black Metal 1993
DARKTHRONE Transilvanian Hunger album cover 4.13 | 39 ratings
Transilvanian Hunger
Black Metal 1994
DARKTHRONE Panzerfaust album cover 3.96 | 28 ratings
Black Metal 1995
DARKTHRONE Total Death album cover 2.88 | 12 ratings
Total Death
Black Metal 1996
DARKTHRONE Goatlord album cover 2.88 | 12 ratings
Black Metal 1996
DARKTHRONE Ravishing Grimness album cover 3.21 | 12 ratings
Ravishing Grimness
Black Metal 1999
DARKTHRONE Plaguewielder album cover 2.45 | 11 ratings
Black Metal 2001
DARKTHRONE Hate Them album cover 3.79 | 12 ratings
Hate Them
Black Metal 2003
DARKTHRONE Sardonic Wrath album cover 2.82 | 11 ratings
Sardonic Wrath
Black Metal 2004
DARKTHRONE The Cult Is Alive album cover 3.53 | 12 ratings
The Cult Is Alive
Black Metal 2006
DARKTHRONE F.O.A.D. album cover 3.34 | 12 ratings
Crust Punk 2007
DARKTHRONE Dark Thrones And Black Flags album cover 3.39 | 14 ratings
Dark Thrones And Black Flags
Crust Punk 2008
DARKTHRONE Circle The Wagons album cover 3.59 | 19 ratings
Circle The Wagons
Crust Punk 2010
DARKTHRONE The Underground Resistance album cover 4.17 | 19 ratings
The Underground Resistance
Heavy Metal 2013
DARKTHRONE Arctic Thunder album cover 3.58 | 12 ratings
Arctic Thunder
Black Metal 2016
DARKTHRONE Old Star album cover 3.76 | 12 ratings
Old Star
Black Metal 2019
DARKTHRONE The Hardship Of The Scots album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Hardship Of The Scots
Black Metal 2019
DARKTHRONE Hate Cloak album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hate Cloak
Black Metal 2021
DARKTHRONE Eternal Hails...... album cover 3.88 | 8 ratings
Eternal Hails......
Doom Metal 2021
DARKTHRONE Astral Fortress album cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
Astral Fortress
Black Metal 2022


DARKTHRONE Crusade From The North album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Crusade From The North
Black Metal 1996
DARKTHRONE Under Beskyttelse Av Mørke album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Under Beskyttelse Av Mørke
Black Metal 2005
DARKTHRONE Too Old Too Cold album cover 2.50 | 1 ratings
Too Old Too Cold
Black Metal 2006
DARKTHRONE New Dark Classics Vol.II album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
New Dark Classics Vol.II
Crust Punk 2007
DARKTHRONE New Wave of Black Heavy Metal album cover 2.50 | 4 ratings
New Wave of Black Heavy Metal
Crust Punk 2007

DARKTHRONE live albums

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

DARKTHRONE Land Of Frost album cover 1.00 | 1 ratings
Land Of Frost
Death Metal 1988
DARKTHRONE A New Dimension album cover 2.33 | 2 ratings
A New Dimension
Death Metal 1988
DARKTHRONE Thulcandra album cover 2.25 | 2 ratings
Death Metal 1989
DARKTHRONE Cromlech album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Death Metal 1989

DARKTHRONE re-issues & compilations

DARKTHRONE Land Of Frost / Thulcandra / Cromlech / Reh. Track album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Land Of Frost / Thulcandra / Cromlech / Reh. Track
Black Metal 2000
DARKTHRONE Preparing For War album cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
Preparing For War
Black Metal 2000
DARKTHRONE Frostland Tapes album cover 4.14 | 3 ratings
Frostland Tapes
Black Metal 2008
DARKTHRONE Sempiternal Past - The Darkthrone Demos album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Sempiternal Past - The Darkthrone Demos
Black Metal 2011
DARKTHRONE Introducing Darkthrone album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Introducing Darkthrone
Black Metal 2013
DARKTHRONE Peaceville Presents... Darkthrone album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Peaceville Presents... Darkthrone
Black Metal 2013
DARKTHRONE Black Death And Beyond album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Black Death And Beyond
Black Metal 2014
DARKTHRONE The Wind Of 666 Black Hearts album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Wind Of 666 Black Hearts
Black Metal 2016
DARKTHRONE Shadows Of Iconoclasm album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Shadows Of Iconoclasm
Black Metal 2021

DARKTHRONE singles (6)

.. Album Cover
4.00 | 1 ratings
Forebyggende Krig
Black Metal 2006
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
NWOBHM (New Wave of Black Heavy Metal)
Crust Punk 2007
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Leave No Cross Unturned (Edit)
Heavy Metal 2013
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Tundra Leech
Black Metal 2016
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Burial Bliss / Visual Aggression
Black Metal 2017
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Duke Of Gloat
Black Metal 2019

DARKTHRONE movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)


DARKTHRONE A Blaze In The Northern Sky

Album · 1992 · Black Metal
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"A Blaze in the Northern Sky" is the 2nd full-length studio album by Norwegian black metal act Darkthrone. The album was released through Peaceville Records in February 1992. It´s the successor to "Soulside Journey" from 1991, but the instrumental part of the material for a full sophomore album was actually recorded in rehearsal in late 1990/early 1991, but shelved because the band felt a need for a drastic change in musical direction (the rehearsal was later released as the "Goatlord (1996)" album with added vocals).

"Soulside Journey (1991)" featured an occult themed technically well played old school Scandinavian death metal sound and was recorded at Sunlight Studios with producer Tomas Skogsberg, so while it´s not a Swedish death metal album, it has a lot of similar features to some of the prolific contemporary Swedish albums in the genre like "Left Hand Path (1990)" by Entombed, "Dark Recollections (1990)" by Carnage, and "Like an Ever Flowing Stream (1991)" by Dismember.

Stylistically the material on "A Blaze in the Northern Sky" very much feels like a determined and very deliberate attempt at writing and releasing something completely different and a way of distancing themselves from the contemporary Scandinavian death metal scene. "A Blaze in the Northern Sky" features a simple, raw, and lo-fi (compared to the sound production on the predecessor) produced black metal style (it´s artists like Hellhammer/Celtic Frost and Bathory who Darkthrone sound influenced by), which sounds like it´s a completely different band playing to the Darkthrone who released "Soulside Journey (1991)". The truth is it´s not, as the lineup who recorded the predecessor is intact, although bassist Dag Nilsen was on his way out (he is only credited as a session musician on the album).

I don´t know if it´s the change in musical direction or the fact that the bass is not audible in the thin high end sound production, which resulted in Nilsen leaving, but the changes in musical style and production values sure are drastic. It came as a complete shock to many fans of the debut album, but provided Darkthrone new fans, who found the new black metal direction interesting.

"A Blaze in the Northern Sky" features 6 tracks and a full playing time of 42:03 minutes, so most of the tracks are relatively long (with opening track "Kathaarian Life Code" clocking in at 10:39 minutes being the longest). Although some parts are repeated the tracks don´t follow a "regular" vers/chorus formula, and they are generally unconventionally structured. That´s one of the exciting features of the album (although a hook here and there could have made the album a bit more accessible), and the organic performances is another, but unfortunately the sound production is a bit of a mess.

I know that old school black metal releases are suppossed to sound thin (the bass not audible), raw to the bone, and almost demo like in nature, but to my ears that concept is taken a bit too far on "A Blaze in the Northern Sky". It´s just not a very well sounding release and it makes it hard to enjoy the music, which is generally not great, but not of a bad quality either. In my world that sums up to about a 3 star (60%) rating and I even feel like I´m stretching a bit here. I hate to rate what others consider a "classic" release so low, but personally there´s very little I perceive as quality features on the album. The songwriting is so and so (although I enjoy the anarchistic approach to structure) and the sound production is below normal standards for a studio release. Peaceville Records was also initially reluctant to release the album, as the label expected something a bit more like "Soulside Journey (1991)", but I guess time has proven both them and me wrong.

DARKTHRONE A Blaze In The Northern Sky

Album · 1992 · Black Metal
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Though a legendary album now, Darkthrone’s A Blaze in the Northern Sky would have been a total shock to anyone previously following the band. Their debut was straight Death Metal, and though it did have a focus on melodies and cold atmospheres, other than that it had very little in common with this creature. I can only guess they started listening to Bathory and decided to go that route, cause I hear Bathory influence all over this. The biggest difference is instead of epic Vikings, the theme is Pagan winters.

A Blaze in the Northern Sky is just 6 long tracks filled with very competent Black Metal, consistent in quality from start to finish, and without many surprises. This is probably considered a landmark release in 2nd wave Black Metal due to its melodic tendencies and lyrical themes that steer away from Satanism. Interestingly, the production sounds a bit worse than their first album, maybe done intentionally to capture that authentic Black Metal sound. My favorite aspect here is the drumming, which is incredibly varied and has much more precision than most Black Metal at the time. The drummer knows when to drop into Doom territory and when to go all out, and does it all very well.

For me, I’ll say that while it is a great album, it didn’t live up to its hype. There’s nothing incredibly unique about it, and to me it’s just a Black Metal version of their debut – strong and competently played, but ultimately unmemorable. Definitely a great listen for that nocturnal winter feel though.


Album · 2019 · Black Metal
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Perhaps Arctic Thunder was just something Darkthrone had to get out of their system - a necessary creative purging before moving on to this. Old Star sounds much more like the followup to The Underground Resistance that a lot of us were expecting than Arctic Thunder does. Whereas the latter album felt more like "blackened heavy metal" than a full-on black metal release, this time around Darkthrone deliver up black metal with a strong influence from the genre's roots in thrash (via Bathory or Venom) and traditional heavy metal (via Mercyful Fate), with more of an emphasis on the thrash this time than on Arctic Thunder. I wouldn't put it above The Underground Resistance, which I consider to be the pinnacle of Darkthrone's current sound, but it's pretty damn good in its own right.

DARKTHRONE Arctic Thunder

Album · 2016 · Black Metal
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The Underground Resistance saw Darkthrone adopt a sort of "blackened heavy metal" approach, combining their usual grim darkness with juicy riffs reminiscent of the more hard-edged 1980s traditional heavy metal bands. It was pretty good too - a sort of return to the first wave of black metal's approach, with the lessons learned from subsequent decade to hand to add spice.

Arctic Thunder, however, doesn't succeed quite so well. The heavy metal dial is turned up even further, the black metal is dialled back a bit but for the vocals, and perhaps worst of all, whilst the music is entertaining enough, it's not more than that. The overall experience is a bit like sitting in on a practice session of your buddy's band who play in his garage and drink beer and tend to drink a bit more beer than they play actual music and are cool with that, but do a decent job of turning out the material and might have done something more interesting with their talents had they applied themselves.

It's not a bad album, mind - it's fun when you're in the right mood for it - but we know that Darkthrone can do better, even in this general style. Three and a half stars, on the verge of losing that half star at that.

DARKTHRONE Arctic Thunder

Album · 2016 · Black Metal
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Whilst most Darkthrone fans would probably point to their early ground breaking black metal albums like Transilvanian Hunger as the pinnacle of their long career my own preference is for 2013’s The Underground Resistance which to this point remains a bit of an anomaly in their back catalogue. There’s no denying the importance of those early albums but the injection of traditional metal into The Underground Resistance, especially after a run of more primitive sounding crust punk infused records, was a breath of fresh air and featured some of their most potent and powerful riffs ever. I was hoping for more of the same with Arctic Thunder so was initially a bit disappointed when the band appears to have made a U-turn and returned to a more mid-period streamlined sound. The production is more of that era too; in fact it’s positively slick by Darkthrone standards warming up the cold atmosphere of the album.

A few plays though and Arctic Thunder is growing on me. It’s a simpler and more direct album than The Underground Resistance but there’s still much to enjoy and is unmistakably the sound of Darkthrone so fans should be generally happy. This time round there’s no shared vocals with Nocturno Culto taking the lot. Songs like opener Tundra Leach, Arctic Thunder and Inbred Vermin make the biggest impact with the strongest riffs, the latter being particularly potent. Boreal Leach slows things right down until near the end and despite some fairly fierce tremolo picked and doom laden riffing is quite atmospheric. Throw Me Through The Marshes doomy riff belies its simplicity turning it into an album highlight. Whilst there’s nothing bad on Arctic Thunder songs like Burial Bliss and The Wyoming Distance are less memorable being Darkthrone by numbers and with only eight tracks on offer you want them all to be killers.

Arctic Thunder probably won’t end up being anyone’s favourite Darkthrone album but despite a couple of lack lustre tracks it’s still a very good one and I prefer the overall sound to that of their early classics, not being much of a fan of that harsh and thin second wave black metal sound. Definitely worth a listen then.

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