Here’s a old interview with the Black Metal band Myrkur, done in the end of august of last year, if I am not mistaken. Myrkur is about to release a new album this year as well as performing live on a few festivals later this year, so let us visit memory lane now and enjoy an interview with this rather good Danish band.
The photos that accompany this interview were taken by Rasmus Malmstrøm & Synne Sofi Bårdsdatter.
There isn’t that much info on Myrkur out on the internet. It appears Myrkur is still very much surrounded by the darkness that lies in its name. Because of that darkness a lot of rumours have started popping up about the supposed origins of Myrkur. What’s your experience of all this and does this matter to you in any way?
I don’t have much experience of this because I do not look on the internet what is written about me. I try to live proactive and not reactive. Meaning I don’t wish to live my life according to others people’s reactions to my music, or what they write anonymously on the internet. If a human being wishes to speak to me in person and show their face to me and they have something to say, I will listen to them and then I will react to them accordingly. I have never lied to anyone about my music, I have simply a desire to stay anonymous as long as I can, because I believe releasing a record should be about the music on it, and not the ‘persona’ behind it, their look or if they a man or woman.
I believe it would be beneficial if people stop putting so much value into what they read about someone. Even if a musician (PR company) releases a detailed bio, that isn’t a true representation of them or their music. Some writers and music listeners seem to think there would be a freedom to knowing everything about a band, but it is not freedom. It is just a slightly bigger cage.
The little info I found about you on the Internet said that you were influenced by nature and one of your favorite hobbies was climbing mountains. Denmark isn’t really famous for its mountains so how did that all start and where do you go when you have to scratch that itch?
Ha I don’t think I have said that my favorite hobby was mountain climbing. But I explained to an Icelandic writer my love for Iceland and nature in general. When I do have free time, I prefer to be in nature and for example walk around in the Norwegian Fjelde. I recently visited Bergen again and, all though I hold an undying love for Denmark, Norway’s nature simply trumps us. As you point out Denmark is very flat and there is really no way to get up high, up where you feel the free air and where you could fall down 700 meters like you can in Norway. So to satisfy my need for different Scandinavian scenery I must travel within Scandinavia. Some Norwegians travel to Copenhagen to take a doctors education. I travel to Norway to walk up the mountains. I travel to Iceland to swim in hot springs and to walk in lava. And I travel to Sweden for the pine forests and kanelbullar. Scandinavia is free like that.
In an interview you did with The Halifax Collect you said one of your main influences was Edvard Grieg, the godfather of Black Metal. Some would argue that a title such as that does not fit him; what’s your argument here? How has he had more impact on you than Cronos or Quorthon?
If some people think this is wrong, then that is okay with me. I can’t tell other people what influenced them, only they know within themselves what certain music means to them. To me personally Edvard Grieg represents true Nordic values that are often portrait in black metal. Deeply rooted in nature, ethereal beauty combined with brutal and dark sounds. If you play some of his works from Peer Gynt in aggressive electric instrumentation it could be a black metal record. In fact I dream about doing so.
What is your goal with Myrkur? Is there a need to return to nature that is the driving force there, to escape the concrete jungles that the cities of our times have become?
I am not sure I have a goal with Myrkur, I am just me and I write this music in my house in Denmark. But I suppose you can say I have a desire to live in a pure and natural environment. Myrkur is this place for me. I am in my own element, I breathe the air I wish, I speak the words I wish, I create the sounds that resonate deepest in my heart. And I carry this with me wherever I go and whatever I do. I can explore the darkness and light of life and mankind through music.
Where do the roots of Myrkur lie? You seem to draw heavily from the old Norwegian scene but somehow I get the feeling that your influences are drawn from a much bigger field. If you had to name the albums or artists that had such an impact on you that you had to start Myrkur then what names or titles who would those be?
I am working on a playlist that will be released soon that will paint a portrait of this. But to name some Edvard Grieg, Stenhammar, Carl Nielsen, Tchaikovsky, Norse folk music, Choral music and Danish + Norwegian girls choir, Mayhem, Ulver, Dissection, Abigor, Emperor, Kvist, Enslaved.