Not the happiest bunch around - since the band seems to count just one - SVARTSYN (apparently Swedish for “pessimism”)/its sole member Ornias is well known for the choices he makes; it is said that “when faced with the choice of two evils, he chooses both” (a slightly distorted Oscar Wilde quotation). I just made that up, of course. Nevertheless, the purveyor of “true underground black metal” is back with SVARTSYN's sixth or seventh LP, ‘Black Testament’. The album was released in Europe today, May 28th, 2013, and will awash North America in torment on June 11th, 2013, due courtesy Agonia Records. Mixed and mastered at Clintworks Studio by Dennis DerClint Israel, and described by The Metal Observer as “an aural nightmare that envelops one in a whirlwind of snakes and blades the one moment, and dips one headfirst into a tar pit the next” (more here), buy the album here (Agonia Records store) if you so desire:
Hailing from Nynäshamn, Sweden, the band, formerly known as “Chalice”, was formed in 1991 by guitarist Ornias and drummer and vocalist Tormentor. Tormentor was soon replaced by Surth and in 1995, SVARTSYN recorded nine tracks of which five found home on ‘A Night Created By The Shadows’ demo. In 1996, Draugen (former DARK FUNERAL drummer) joined SVARTSYN who then proceeded to record their debut album ‘The True Legend’, released through Folter Records in 1998. UNPURE's Kolgrim replaced Surth on 1997's ‘Tormentor’ 7” EP and on second album ‘Bloodline’. Recorded already in 1998, ‘Bloodline’ received a limited release via End All Life Productions in the year 2000. After Kolgrim, Mörk was soon discharged, apparently for being “unstable”. In 2003, the band issued their third album ‘Destruction Of Man’, followed by ‘Chaos Svarta Mar / Skinning The Lambs’ split with ARCKANUM which reportedly “dropped like a bomb on an unsuspecting black metal community”. ‘Bloodline’ was re-released in 2005 by Sound Riot Records, and ‘Timeless Reign’ was put forth in 2007 through Carnal Records. Staying true to his own brand of melodic, low-fi black metal, SVARTSYN/Ornias next recorded ‘Wrath Upon The Earth’, he released through Agonia Records in 2011.