|Slogan||Illuminating the Post-Industrial Underground|
Type of site
|Created by||Malahki Thorn|
Heathen Harvest is an Internet publication devoted to music criticism, music news and interviews. Its focus is on underground and post-industrial music, including ambient, metal, folk, classical, gothic, industrial and various forms of experimental and avant-garde music.
The site, which was established in 2003, is one of the longest-running webzines of its kind and has been dubbed "one of the leading online magazines for post-industrial music"  and "the internet's foremost authority on neofolk."  The US record label First Fallen Star said of the webzine, "amid an ocean of pathetic websites offering up poorly written one-paragraph reviews merely to justify turning around and selling the albums on eBay for profit, Heathen Harvest was always, and continues to be, a site diligently maintained by a group of serious people, writing serious reviews of the music we all love". Heathen Harvest has been entirely self-financed and non-profit since its foundation, being driven purely by volunteer staff "motivated by their love of music and art". The website closed in June 2010 but was relaunched in July 2011 at a different domain.
Heathen Harvest has given support to many underground artists and rarely features mainstream bands. It has a current review archive of over 4,800 individual reviews of underground music albums. The magazine has published interviews with many leading artists within the industry including Death In June, Arcana, In Gowan Ring, Jarboe, Ordo Rosarius Equilibrio, Coil, Sol Invictus, Von Thronstahl, Vladimír Hirsch, Skrol, Stephen O'Malley, Tenhi, Tony Wakeford and Ulver. The magazine has also interviewed record label personnel from institutions such as Cyclic Law Records, Lens Records, Beta-lactam Ring Records and Ván Records.
Heathen Harvest originally began as the Heathen Harvest Music Review, written by Malahki Thorn for RFD Magazine in 2002. Thorn had moved from San Francisco to pursue a quieter life away from the city in Trinity County, California and wanted to share his high-school influences through post-industrial music with the Radical Faeries community.
After one and a half years Heathen Harvest moved online, hosted by the RFD website, but by 2005 it had outgrown the server and needed its own designated online space. Since moving away from the RFD, Heathen Harvest was mostly assisted by guest contributors such as Lee Powell (Judas Kiss Magazine), Troy Southgate and Thorn's long-term partner Joshua Peters. After most of these writers left, once again Thorn ran Heathen Harvest singlehandedly until June 2006 when he recruited an array of new journalists.
In December 2006 the site design was overhauled and the magazine began publishing on a bi-monthly basis. Multiple journalists collectively contributed over one hundred articles per month, such as Nick Quarm, Sage L. Weatherford, Patrick O’sullivan and Elena ZG, who would make up the core of the magazine for most of this period.
Soon more journalists were welcomed onboard but eventually (with the exception of Sage L. Weatherford, Patrick O’sullivan, and Elena ZG), all of this original group left or were dismissed. A handful of new writers entered Heathen Harvest, but gradually those running the webzine began to burn out due to the amount of money and time it was taking to process the immense amount of material submitted.
Closure and relaunch
In June 2010, Thorn announced that issue 84 of Heathen Harvest was to be the final issue, citing financial concerns as the reason for the closure, as well as being overburdened with promos to review, stating "the number of submissions far exceeds our staffs [sic] capabilities". Thorn felt positive about the achievements made by Heathen Harvest over time, saying, "I feel satisfied that the Heathen Harvest volunteer staff have given enough throughout our seven years and now its [sic] time to bow out and allow someone new and fresh to pick up the banner and lead the charge".
At the start of 2011, a collective of the old Heathen Harvest staff assembled to officially restart the webzine in a blog format on a different server. It took several months to restart the webzine and the new site was finally launched on 4 July 2011 under the name of The Heathen Harvest Periodical to distinguish it from the old site, and under the new domain heathenharvest.org. The site now works mostly with digital review media and is more selective over what it reviews. The old site, heathenharvest.com, remained online for archival purposes until 2013.
In 2009 Heathen Harvest came under fire from jazz musician Geoff Leigh for promoting far-right politics due to supposed symbolism employed on heathenharvest.com. Leigh attacked the webzine by calling its staff Neo-nazis and insinuated that its name was code for "Heil Hitler". The magazine responded by saying it was "an international organisation of all peoples, beliefs, and political views" and called the accusation that its staff were practicing Neo-Nazis "absurd".
- "Side-Line Magazine reference". Retrieved 19 July 2011.
- "Pyhä Kuolema premieres new track on HeathenHarvest.org". Retrieved 5 September 2013.
- "First Fallen Star reference". Retrieved 3 April 2012.
- "About Us". Retrieved 19 July 2010.
- Heathen Harvest review archive Retrieved 19 July 2011
- "Wolf Pack". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 18 July 2011.
- "History". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
- Heathen Harvest new design Retrieved 19 July 2011
- "History". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 26 September 2011.
- "Issue 84 - The Final Issue". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 18 July 2011.
- "Closure announcement". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 18 July 2011.
- "Sending music". Heathen Harvest. Retrieved 18 July 2011.
- A Bad Year for Bad Apples Retrieved 19 July 2011
- Magazine response Retrieved 19 July 2011