Are you intrigued by the mysterious and dark sound of Norwegian black metal? Since its emergence in the early 1990s, black metal has become an influential musical style across Europe and the world. This genre contains a diverse range of strongly individual sounds – from orchestral to extreme, melodic to chaotic – but all elements bear one common thread: they have origins in Norway. With its dramatic landscapes, deep-rooted history, and unique culture, it’s no wonder that this music found its home there! If you’re looking for some edgy new music to explore then look no further than these top Norwegian black metal bands. Read on to discover this incredible underground scene!
Table of Contents
Features of Norwegian Black Metal
Norwegian Black Metal (NBM) is a subgenre of extreme metal music (black metal) that has its roots in Norway. It is characterized by its dark, sinister sound and lyrics dealing with death, religion, evil, despair, and anti-Christian themes.
NBM bands often use distorted guitar riffs and blast beats to create an intense wall of sound. The vocals are typically shrieking or harsh growls which add to the atmosphere. Many NBM bands also employ elements of traditional folk music as well as ambient keyboards to create an atmospheric texture.
Norwegian black metal bands such as Burzum, Darkthrone, Enslaved, and Immortal have become legends in underground music circles and continue to inspire new generations of extreme metal fans. Norwegian black metal has heavily influenced other genres such as death metal and grindcore, making it one of the most influential subgenres in heavy metal history. If you are looking for a unique sound that is sure to leave an impression on you then look no further than the dark depths of Norwegian black metal! 
The Best Norwegian Black Metal Bands
One of the most revolutionary Norwegian black metal bands, Darkthrone has made a remarkable contribution to the genre’s progression in the 90s. Their raw and primitive style, along with their willingness to experiment with different sounds has made them an iconic band within the scene. Darkthrone has released multiple albums over the years, including A Blaze In The Northern Sky (1992), Transilvanian Hunger (1994), Panzerfaust (1995) and The Cult Is Alive (2006). Their music embodies a unique hard-hitting sound that is sure to captivate any listener.
It is an iconic Norwegian black metal band that has been active since the early 1990s. Formed by Satyr and Frost, they are well-known for their intense live performances, melodic sound and complex songwriting. Their songs feature a mix of growled vocals and clean singing, combined with heavy guitar riffs, symphonic keyboards, programmed drums and thunderous bass lines to create a powerful yet sophisticated atmosphere. They have released eight studio albums over the course of their career and remain one of the most influential bands in Black Metal today.
One of the biggest bands to come out of the Norwegian black metal scene was Emperor. Formed by Ihsahn and Samoth in 1991, the band quickly rose to prominence with their debut album In The Nightside Eclipse in 1994. This album set a benchmark for all future black metal bands, as it combined monstrous riffs and blast beats with complex song structures and symphonic elements. Emperor went on to release five more albums, each one pushing boundaries further than before and earning them even more critical acclaim. Since disbanding in 2001, Emperor’s influence has only grown stronger, becoming an inspiration for countless new bands exploring the dark depths of extreme metal music. With its powerful yet atmospheric sound, Emperor is certainly one of Norway’s most important and influential black metal bands.
Another major force in Norway’s black metal scene is Dimmu Borgir. Founded by Shagrath and Silenoz in 1993, the band quickly made a name for themselves with their raw, aggressive sound and darkly theatrical live shows. Their full-length debut album For All Tid was released in 1994 to wide critical acclaim and further cemented them as one of Norway’s premier bands. Throughout the years, Dimmu Borgir has continually pushed boundaries by incorporating elements from other genres such as symphonic metal and industrial music into their unique style of extreme metal. Despite having gone through numerous lineup changes over the years, Dimmu Borgir remain one of Norway’s most influential black metal bands to this day with an ever-growing international fanbase. 
Formed in 1984, this legendary Norwegian Black Metal band has gone through several lineup changes since its inception. Although largely inactive during the mid-90s, Mayhem reemerged and released a unique album called Ordo ad Chao in 2007. The album received great reviews and earned them the title of best Norwegian Black Metal band by many music critics and fans alike. Furthermore, they are credited with helping to pioneer the blending of black metal and ambient soundscapes – an influence that can still be seen today throughout modern black metal bands.
Taake is a black metal band that formed in 1993 and hails from Bergen in Norway. They are renowned for their raw and dirty style of Black Metal, as well as their incorporation of traditional Norwegian melodies into songs. Although Taake have never achieved the same level of commercial success as Mayhem, they remain a popular and respected name in the black metal scene. Notable works include the albums ‘Hordalands Doedskvad’ and ‘Nattestid Ser Porten Vid’ which showcase their unique sound and influences.
This controversial black metal band is one of the most influential Norwegian bands in the genre. Formed in 1999, they have released four studio albums and one EP. Skitliv’s sound is a mix of classical black metal elements with more experimental sounds like shoegaze, drone, and ambient. The band has become well known for their intense live performances and exploration of social issues such as depression, suicide, and death in their lyrics. They are often seen as pioneers of “blackgaze” (a subgenre combining post-rock/shoegaze with black metal) and have been cited by several bands as an influence on their own sound. Skitliv continues to be a formidable force within the Norwegian Black Metal scene.
Gorgoroth is one of the most influential Norwegian black metal bands in the world. Founded in 1992, they have released nine studio albums and two live albums. Gorgoroth’s sound is characterized by intense blast beats, tremolo picking guitar riffs, and shrieking vocals. Their lyrics often focus on Satanic themes, anti-Christianity, and Scandinavian folklore. Despite their controversial reputation due to their extreme imagery and satanic beliefs, Gorgoroth has made an undeniable impact on black metal as a whole. The band continues to tour internationally and remains one of Norway’s most popular black metal acts. 
Burzum is one of the most influential bands in black metal and is often credited as a pioneer of the genre. Founded by Varg Vikernes in 1991, Burzum has released eight studio albums and two EP’s. Their music can be described as raw, minimalist black metal with melodic elements throughout their songs. Many of their lyrics are heavily inspired by Norse mythology and nature. In addition to being an influential black metal band, Burzum has also become notorious for its controversial past involving church burnings and a murder charge against Vikernes himself.
This Norwegian black metal band, which was founded in 1994 by Vrangsinn and Centurion, has become one of the most influential bands in the genre. The lyrics often focus on Norse mythology and paganism, and their sound is characterized by raw aggression and extreme blast beats. Trelldom’s debut album, Til Evighet…, remains a classic among fans. Other albums like All Hail Pessimism and Profetens Åpenbaring have firmly established the band as one of Norway’s premier black metal acts. Their energetic live performances continue to gain them a larger fanbase each year, making Trelldom an essential part of any fan’s collection.
Order From Chaos
Founded in 1990 by Mike Miller, Order From Chaos is often credited as one of the key bands that helped define the Norwegian black metal sound. Their two albums, Dawn Bringer and Stillbirth Machine, are widely celebrated among fans for their dark atmosphere and extreme musicianship. Order From Chaos’s sound is a combination of doom metal and punk influences, with chaotic blast beats and piercing vocals. Although the band went on hiatus after their second album, they have made occasional live performances in recent years, much to the delight of their devoted fans. 
It is a black metal band from Norway that has been cited as one of the pioneering forces in the development of symphonic and melodic black metal. Formed in 1994, they have released four albums and several EPs through various labels, such as Candlelight Records and Peaceville Records. Their most popular songs include “Fimbulwinter”, “Buried By Time and Dust”, and “The Wrath of Odin”. In addition to their signature sound, Ragnarok’s lyrics focus heavily on Norse mythology, with references to ancient myths and legends throughout their work. The band also features keyboards prominently in some songs, adding an epic touch to their music. With their powerful performances, impeccable musicianship, and innovative soundscapes, Ragnarok is considered one of the most influential and important black metal bands of all time.
Kampfar is a Norwegian black metal band formed in 1994. Their music has both epic, folk-inspired soundscapes as well as traditional elements of extreme metal. The band is often credited with creating the symphonic Viking Black Metal style, which features a combination of folk instruments and traditional metal with Viking themes and imagery throughout their work. They have released several albums, including profane (2005) and Mare (2009), all to great critical acclaim from fans and critics alike. Kampfar are renowned for their intense live performances as well as their darkly evocative lyrics that take inspiration from Nordic mythology and other historical sources. Whether it be moody melodic passages or epic anthems, Kampfars’s unique soundscape captures a true slice of Norwegian black metal history.
Vesen is a Norwegian black metal band formed in the 1990s. Their music draws heavily on the Scandinavian death metal sound, with extended musical passages and technical instrumental proficiency. The lyrics often focus on themes of Norse mythology, as well as other dark mythical stories. Vesen have released three full-length albums: The Awakening (2000), Path to Oblivion (2005) and Aporia (2009). Considered by many to be one of Norway’s premier black metal acts, their live performances are praised for their sheer intensity and aggression. With their crushing riffs and blistering tempos, Vesen’s music has become an underground cult favorite in the extreme metal world. 
Malignant Eternal is a Norwegian black metal band formed in 1996. Their music draws heavily on the classic Norwegian sound, with biting riffs, haunting atmospheres and grim lyrics inspired by mythology and occultism. The band has released five full-length albums, all of which have been met with critical acclaim from fans and critics alike.
Wurdulak is a black metal supergroup formed by members of the Norwegian scene in 2002. The band features musicians from some of Norway’s most influential extreme metal acts, such as Mayhem, 1349 and Burzum. Combining elements of doom metal with ferocious black metal riffs, Wurdulak’s music is often seen as a bridge between the Norwegian and American scenes. With their crushing soundscapes and darkly evocative lyrics, they have become cult favorites in the underground metal world.
Overall, these bands prove that Norway can create some truly unique and powerful extreme metal sounds. From symphonic epics to thrashing anthems to more traditional styles, each act has its own signature sound that makes them stand out from the crowd. No matter what kind of black metal one enjoys, there’s sure to be something here for everyone.
By combining classic Norwegian influences with more modern elements and styles, these bands have created a truly unique sound that has been enjoyed by metal fans around the world for decades. Whether it be melodic passages or raw fury, each of these acts is sure to resonate with listeners in some way. So if you’re looking to explore the depths of extreme music, then look no further than these five legendary Norwegian black metal bands.
Why Do People Like Black Metal Music?
Since the emergence of black metal in the early 1990s, its popularity has grown exponentially. The genre is often characterized by its raw and extreme sound, which makes it captivating for many music fans around the world. In addition to its sound, some elements that make black metal particularly appealing are its dark lyrics and imagery, as well as its anti-establishment sentiment. It’s no wonder why so many people find themselves drawn to this particular style of heavy metal music.
Overall, there’s no doubt that black metal has become one of the most beloved genres of metal music worldwide. Between its dark sound and rebellious nature, it’s easy to understand why people find themselves so attracted to this form of heavy metal. With Norway’s contributions being so influential, many fans will look towards these classic Norwegian groups for their favorite tunes from the genre. 
Types of Black Metal Music
Black metal is a type of extreme metal music that originated in Norway during the early 1990s. It is characterized by its fast tempos, shrieking vocals, and aggressive lyrical themes. The genre has taken many forms over the years and can be divided into several distinct subgenres, including melodic black metal, symphonic black metal, post-black metal, and more.
Melodic black metal combines elements of traditional heavy metal with more complex melodies and harmonies than other styles of black metal. This sound was popularized by bands such as Emperor and Dimmu Borgir. Symphonic black metal incorporates the use of keyboards to create eerie atmospheric effects layered over typical black metal riffs and beats. Notable bands in this subgenre include Cradle of Filth, Satyricon and Rotting Christ.
Post-black metal is a relatively new style of music that blends elements of black metal with other genres like shoegaze, post-rock and ambient music. It has gained popularity over the last few years due to its innovative approach to the genre. Notable bands in this style include Alcest, Deafheaven and Lantlos.
No matter what type of sound you’re looking for, there are plenty of outstanding Norwegian black metal bands to choose from. Whether it’s melodic or symphonic or post-black metal, these bands have all left their mark on the music scene. Some of the best Norwegian black metal bands include Emperor, Dimmu Borgir, Satyricon, Burzum and Darkthrone. These bands have shaped the sound of modern extreme metal music and are credited with popularizing black metal in the international music scene.
In addition to these top-tier acts, there are plenty of other talented Norwegian black metal bands worth checking out. Gorgoroth, Mayhem, Ulver and Enslaved are just a few of the many groups that have contributed to this genre over the years. With their unique blend of heavy riffs, blast beats and intense lyrics, these bands have earned their place among Norway’s best black metal acts.
Whether you’re a fan of traditional black metal or something more experimental, Norway has produced some of the most influential bands in extreme metal history. From classic groups like Emperor and Dimmu Borgir to newer acts such as Alcest and Deafheaven, there are plenty of Norwegian black metal bands worth exploring. So why not take some time to discover these incredible artists and their music? You won’t be disappointed!
Who is the best black metal band?
It is difficult to name a single ‘best’ black metal band due to the variety of bands in the genre. Some popular Norwegian black metal bands that many fans consider to be noteworthy include Mayhem, Emperor, Darkthrone, Burzum, and Satyricon. All of these bands have produced highly acclaimed albums which helped shape the sound and style of black metal music as it is known today.
What makes Norwegian black metal unique?
Norwegian Black Metal differs from other genres of heavy metal music due to its raw and aggressive sound as well as its association with paganism and anti-Christian themes. The originators of this genre also used distorted vocals and harsh instrumentation to produce a distinctively dark atmosphere within their songs. Additionally, this type of metal has been deeply rooted in Norwegian culture and its themes are often based on Norse mythology or the dark and rugged landscape of Norway.
Why is Norwegian black metal so influential?
Norwegian black metal has had a major impact on the metal music world since it first emerged in the early 1990s. This genre has inspired countless other bands over the years with its unique sound and intense atmosphere that can be found in many forms of metal today. It also helped kick-start an extreme metal movement which expanded beyond just Norway, bringing a more extreme style of music to fans around the world. Furthermore, it opened up possibilities for various types of heavy music to evolve and blossom into new dimensions.
Is Norway famous for black metal?
Yes, Norway is widely known as the birthplace of black metal and one of its most important centers. The Norwegian scene has a long history of producing some of the most iconic bands in this genre and some of the best music ever created. Its influence continues to be felt around the world today and it remains an essential part of heavy metal culture.
What are some obscure Norwegian black metal bands?
Some lesser known Norwegian black metal bands include Carpathian Forest, Isengard, Kampfar, Darkthrone (pre-Frostland Tapes), Gorgoroth, Emperor and Dimmu Borgir. Carpathian Forest is well-known for their heavy and primitive sound that incorporates progressive elements. They were one of the earliest groups in the genre to incorporate humor into their music. Isengard was a short-lived project led by multi-instrumentalist Fenriz from Darkthrone. Their style was closer to death/doom metal than black metal. Kampfar is another band that stands out from typical Norwegian black metal due to its more melodic approach and occult lyrical themes.
Who invented Norwegian black metal?
Norwegian black metal was invented by Euronymous and Varg Vikernes of the band Mayhem. They are credited with further developing the sound of Norwegian black metal, as well as popularizing it to a wider audience. Euronymous created Deathlike Silence Productions in 1991 which released seminal albums from various bands such as Darkthrone, Burzum and Emperor that would later become known as Norwegian black metal. The infamous “Black Circle” was formed by these musicians, who supported each other’s projects through collaboration. This circle also promoted a culture of satanism, violence and hatred towards Christianity that became part of the genre’s legacy. In 1993, the explosion of church burnings made international headlines and put Norwegian black metal on the map. Euronymous was murdered by Varg Vikernes in 1993, which ended the original “Black Circle”. The genre has since evolved and continues to be a strong influence on extreme metal today.
What is the most brutal black metal band?
That’s a tough question, as there are many bands that could be considered the most brutal. However, some of the Norwegian black metal bands that have been recognized for their intense sound and unique take on extreme metal include Emperor, Gorgoroth, Burzum, Darkthrone and Mayhem. Each of these bands has earned a place in black metal history with their aggressive style and uncompromising attitude. With bleak lyrics about despair and death combined with fast-paced music full of aggression and raw intensity, it’s no wonder these bands have become legendary within the genre.
Is metal music popular in Scandinavia?
Absolutely! Metal music has been popular in Scandinavia for decades, and the Scandinavian countries have produced some of the most influential metal bands of all time. Sweden alone is responsible for giving us icons such as Bathory and At The Gates, while Norway is home to legendary black metal acts like Emperor and Mayhem. In recent years, more extreme subgenres such as death metal and doom metal have gained a huge following in Scandinavia, with fans attending festivals across the region dedicated to these styles. Metalheads from all over come together each year to celebrate their shared love of heavy music, making Scandinavia one of Europe’s most vibrant areas for extreme music.
Useful Video: Top 10 NORWEGIAN METAL Bands
At the end of the day, Norwegian black metal is a genre that has stood the test of time and will continue to do so for many years to come. With its roots in Norse mythology, intricate melodies and extreme concepts, these bands are some of the best in their field. From classics like Emperor and Mayhem to newcomers like Dødheimsgard and Svarttjern, there’s something for everyone within this darkly beautiful genre. No matter what type of music you’re into, Norwegian black metal should definitely be on your radar if it isn’t already. So why not take some time out to listen to some amazing tunes from these incredible bands? You won’t regret it!