Live at the Hole In The Sky, Bergen Metal Fest 2008
|Origin||Wheaton, Illinois, United States|
|Genres||Black metal, psychedelic rock, experimental rock, industrial metal, extreme metal|
|Years active||2000 - 2013|
Battle Kommand Records
Southern Lord Records
|Past members||Blake Judd
Nachtmystium was an American psychedelic black metal band formed by Blake Judd, formerly known as Azentrius, and Pat McCormick. The band's name is derived from the German word Nacht meaning "night", and the made-up term mystium which resembles the Latin adjective mysticum. Judd and McCormick combined the words to create the band's name, which they state means "Encompassing Darkness". After nearly a 13-year run, Judd disbanded the band in 2013. Nachtmystium released seven full-length studio albums and headlined multiple concert tours.
Nachtmystium was originally founded by Blake Judd and Pat McCormick as a side project. The band was heavily influenced by second-wave black metal bands, such as Darkthrone and Burzum, evidenced in their low-fi first release Reign of the Malicious in 2002. The band’s next release, Demise (2004), was described by Judd as Nachtmystium's "last straight forward 'raw black metal' record." The band's following two releases, Eulogy IV (2004) and Instinct: Decay (2006), incorporated psychedelic and experimental musical elements that were pioneered by bands like Black Sabbath, The Doors and Pink Floyd. Instinct: Decay received general positive feedback from critics. DEAF SPARROW Zine, praised the album for its innovation, while Decibel Magazine went even further to name Instinct: Decay as the fourth best album of 2006. The band released Assassins: Black Meddle, Part 1 on June 10, 2008 in America. The album received a generally positive critical reception, especially from Pitchfork Media and MTV's Headbangers Ball, who both stated that it was one of the year's best releases.
The band played their first Scandinavian show in Bergen, Norway at the 2008 Hole in the Sky Festival with At the Gates, Municipal Waste, and Meshuggah. Nachtmystium toured with Opeth, Baroness, and High on Fire for the first half of their American tour. In September 2008, the band confirmed plans to release a remastered version of Demise, with two extra tracks. Nachtmystium has also announced plans to release a new EP, entitled Doomsday Derelicts, early in 2009. The band experienced two major setbacks in February and March 2009. Nachtmystium was forced to withdraw from the Scion Rock Fest in Atlanta, Georgia due to alleged connections to National Socialist black metal (see Connection to NSBM section). Later that month, Judd injured his leg, forcing the band to cancel their tour with The Haunted.
In September 2009, Nachtmystium announced plans to release a follow up album to Assassins: Black Meddle Part 1 with an album titled Addicts: Black Meddle, Part II. Judd commented that the album would feature new material with "more of a rock and roll edge over all", and reflect the bands interest in post-rock and industrial music. The album debuted on June 8, 2010. The band played at the Inferno Festival in Oslo, Norway, on April 3, 2010, where they shared the stage with Mayhem, Finntroll, and Taake.
Nachtmystium began recording for their new album in early 2011. The progress of the album was impeded by the departure of Judd's longtime band mate and friend, Jeff Wilson, who left Nachtmystium for personal reasons. Finally, In 2012, Nachtmystium released their sixth full-length studio album, Silencing Machine. The album marked a departure from the band's previous two Black Meddle albums. Judd described the album, as, "a follow-up to Instinct: Decay. He further stated that the album has "still some psychedelic vibes here and there, but overall it’s much more on par towards our older material."
Following a brief hiatus, Judd announced the band plans on starting on working a new studio album during the summer of 2013. Judd was arrested on October 5, 2013 on charges of misdemeanor theft by unauthorized control of property. Nachtmystium was forced to cancel their shows through November 1, 2013. After his release on November 1, Judd issued a statement detailing his legal struggles and battle with drug addiction. Judd stated that Nachtmystium had come close to finishing their latest studio album, The World We Left Behind, with plans to release it in early 2014. Judd stated that he would be leaving the band and his residence in Chicago to focus on rehabilitation and recovery for an 'indefinite amount of time'.  On November 13, Judd announced that Nachtmystium was officially disbanding and thanked his fans for their support over the band's 13-year run.
Nachtmystium's line-up has frequently changed since its formation. Furthermore, while the band originally started as a black metal band, and even toured with black metal acts such as Angelcorpse, Goatwhore, and Watain, Judd has frequently stated that the band should not be considered black metal per se. In an interview with DEAF SPARROW Zine, Judd stated, "What separates us from your average black metal band is that we're NOT a black metal band, we're a 'do-whatever-the-fuck-we-want' metal band and black metal happens to be what we build our foundation off of (in the case of Instinct: Decay and its predecessors), if you must categorize the rhythm sections of our music (rhythm guitars, bass and drums - the core of any album)." J. Bennet of Decibel Magazine described the band's sound as “Blackadelia”. Jason Bracelin, of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, compared the band's latter work to Pink Floyd, claiming, "[Assassins] is what happens when Pink goes black." Since the release of Assassins, the band has received additional press-coverage and attention from media outlets, including Metal Maniacs, Terrorizer, CMJ New Music Monthly, and Metalkult.com. Despite their departure from the black metal genre, Carlos Ramirez of IGN.com listed Assassins as one of the ten greatest black metal albums.
Connection to NSBM
Nachtmystium's second demo, entitled "Unholy Terrorist Cult", was un-officially re-released in 2001 by American N.S. black metal record label Vinland Winds, after the band had officially released it themselves on CD-R format on their 'Majestic Twilight Creations' imprint. Vinland Winds simply continued to make CD-Rs without the band's knowledge and apparently made their own layout for the CD-Rs that were distributed, featuring very different artwork than the original. This was later brought to the band's attention, and considering that it was merely an item on Vinland Winds' distro (which carried titles from many major metal labels at the time, completely unassociated with any N.S. scenes or politics), the band told the label they didn't care if they continued to sell their demo. Their first full length album, Reign of the Malicious, was released on Regimental Records and distributed (although not pressed) by Unholy Records, who were an imprint of the White Power and Nazi Skinhead label Resistance Records, and dealt mostly with National Socialist black metal.
In 2006, Judd said that, “In the past, we’ve had some indirect ties to labels and bands that are part of the NS scene. At one point not too many years ago, it wasn’t uncommon for NS labels or bands to trade and work with non-politically motivated bands and labels because at the end of the day, we’re all trying to promote, release, and be involved with music—all politics aside. Today it seems like there’s less of a connection, at least for me and my label. We don’t oppose people’s right to be ‘NS’ or whatever—that’s a personal choice, and if you live in the USA, you have the right to that opinion. Even though I personally, my band(s) and my label have absolutely no interest in being a part of that scene, I will ALWAYS take their side when it comes to their freedom of speech being imposed upon.”
Just before the Atlanta, Georgia Scion Rock Fest on Saturday February 28, 2009, Nachtmystium was forced to cancel at the request of the festival's promoters, and sponsors, Toyota, on Tuesday February 23, 2008 due to an unnamed source, who believed the group was a "Nazi" band. Judd promptly released a statement after the incident, stating, "We will be taking legal action against the people who slandered us in this situation, and in the future will file defamation / slander charges against any person or organization who attempts to prevent us from performing anywhere, especially in the United States. So - let it be known loud and clear for the LAST TIME, we ARE NOT a Nazi band, ARE NOT political, are certainly NOT racists and DO NOT support that world or any band, person or business affiliated with it." He also apologized to Nachtmystium fans who traveled to the concert to support the band.
- Blake Judd – guitar, vocals
- Sam Shroyer - drums
- John Porada - bass
- Charlie Fell - drums
- Will Lindsay - bass
- Andrew "Aamonael" Markuszewski - guitar
- Sanford Parker - keyboards/synthesizers
- Reid Raley - bass
- Jeff Wilson – guitar
- John Necromancer - bass
- Zack Simmons - drums
- Bob Fouts - drums (touring)
- Chris Black – bass
- Matt Block (aka Xaphar) – drums
- Jean Graffio – drums
- Neill Jameson (aka Imperial) – bass
- Marcus Kolar – bass
- Markus Launsburry - guitar, bass
- Tony Laureano – drums (session)
- Sanford Parker – synth panel / sound engineer
- Kriglord – vocals, guitar, keyboard
- Zion Meagher – bass
- Noctis – drums
- David Swanson (aka Grave, aka G. Reymond) – drums
- Zmij – vocals
- Reign of the Malicious (2002)
- Demise (2004)
- Instinct: Decay (2006)
- Assassins: Black Meddle, Part 1 (2008)
- Addicts: Black Meddle, Part II (2010)
- Silencing Machine (2012)
- The World We Left Behind (2014)
- Nachtmystium (2003); re-released together with Reign of the Malicious (2004)
- Eulogy IV (2004)
- Worldfall (2008)
- Doomsday Derelicts (2009)
- Holocaust of Eternity (2000)
- Unholy Terrorist Cult (2001)
- Nachtmystium/Zalnik (with Zalnik) (2001)
- Nachtmystium/Xasthur (with Xasthur) (2004)
- Daze West (with Krieg) (2005)
- Nachtmystium/Murmur (2011)
- Live Onslaught (2002)
- Live Blitzkrieg (2003)
- Live Onslaught 2 (2005)
- Visual Propaganda: Live from the Pits of Damnation (DVD, 2005)
- Live At Roadburn MMX (LP and CD 2011)
- The First Attacks, 2000-2001 (2004)
- "Nachtmystium, Official MySpace Homepage". Retrieved on 2008-06-02
- Hensch, Mark (2008). "Nachtmystium Interview". thrashpit.com. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
- "Genghis Tron & Nachtmystium Part II". Youtube (Contraband Candy). 2008-06-16. Retrieved 2008-06-18.
- Chris, Mitchell (2004-03-11). "Interview with Azentrius". metalcrypt.com (The Metal Crypt). Retrieved 2008-03-23.
- "Delirium", atmf.net (July 2005). "Nachtmystium 07/2005". Aeternitas Tenebrarum Music Foundation. Retrieved 2008-06-02.
- Bennet, J. (2008-06-02). "Nachtmystium take underground black metal into hyperspace". Decibel Magazine. Retrieved 2008-06-02.
- "Blake Judd Interview". Left Hand Path. 2007-08-13. Retrieved 2008-03-23.
- Gendron, Bob (2008-06-01). "Nachtmystium's new album". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2008-06-03.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM - Instinct: Decay review". DEAF SPARROW Zine. 2006. Retrieved 2008-06-19.
- Grow, Kory (2007). "#4 Album of the Year". Decibel Magazine. Archived from the original on 2008-04-06. Retrieved 2008-06-19.
- "Exclusive Podcast: Nachtmystium’s Blake Judd Discusses Black Metal, Psychedelic Art and Heavy Metal Hamburgers". Headbangers Ball's Blog. 2008-07-25. Retrieved 2008-08-15.
- Stosuy, Brandon (2008-07-09). "Nachtmystium: Assassins: Black Meddle, Pt. 1 [Century Media/Candlelight; 2008]". Pitchfork. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM Announce US Tour With Wolves In The Throne Room". The Gaunlet. 2008-08-27. Retrieved 2008-08-28.
- Harris, Chris (2008-07-11). "Opiate For The Masses' Manifesto Features New Bassist, Snoring Bulldogs; Plus Opeth, Slipknot & More News That Rules, In Metal File". MTV. Retrieved 2008-07-11.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM: 'Demise' To Be Reissued With Bonus Tracks - Sep. 30, 2008". roadrunnerrecords.com (Road Runner Records). 2008-09-28. Retrieved 2008-10-01.
- "News du 21 décembre 2008" (in French). Lifeless Zine. 2008-12-21. Retrieved 2009-01-11.
- Jones, Tom (2009-02-27). "Nachtmystium deny racism charge. Regardless, Toyota kicked them off this weekend's Scion Rock Fest". Brooklyn Vegan. Retrieved 2009-03-01.
- Hynes, Ollie (2009-03-16). "Nachtmystium Drops Off Tour With The Haunted". metalunderground.com. Retrieved 2009-03-22.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM To Enter Studio In January - Sep. 2, 2009". Road Runner Records (BlabberMouth.net). 2009-09-26. Retrieved 2009-09-26.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM: New Album Artwork Trailer Posted". The Gauntlet. 2010-04-18. Retrieved 2010-04-19.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM Confirmed For Norway's INFERNO Festival - Nov. 2, 2009". Roadrunner Records (BLABBERMOUTH.NET). 2009-11-08. Retrieved 2009-11-10.
- Harris, Chris (4 May 2011). "Nachtmystium Working On New Materi". Gun Shy Assassin. Retrieved 25 May 2011.
- Fisher, Trevor (01 Jan 2011). "Cover Story: Nachtmystium". Illinois Entertainer. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
- A., Ty (07 06 2012). "Nachtmystium's Blake Judd Discusses New Album "Silencing Machine"". Metal Underground. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
- Nelson, Michael (17 March 2013). "The Genocide March". Stereogum. Retrieved 2013-03-10.
- Harris, Chris (28). "Nachtmystium To Enter Studio Next Month". Gun Shy Assassin. Retrieved 28 June 2013.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM Mainman Arrested On Theft Charges". blabbermouth.net. 2013-10-06. Retrieved 2013-10-06.
- "Individual Inmate Report". www2.cookcountysheriff.org/ (Cook County Sheriff's Office). 2013-10-05. Retrieved 2013-10-06.
- Marshall, Wyatt (2013-10-07). "Nachtmystium". Brooklyn Vegan. Retrieved 2013-10-08.
- Moore, Doug (2013-10-14). "Nachtmystium cancel CMJ appearance; Blake Judd is targeted by a t-shirt". BrooklynVegan. Retrieved 2013-10-14.
- Teitelman, Bram (2013-11-03). "NACHTMYSTIUM’S BLAKE JUDD RELEASED FROM PRISON, ISSUES STATEMENT". Metal Insider. Retrieved 2013-11-03.
- Nelson, Michael (2013-11-05). "Nachtmystium – “Voyager” (Stereogum Premiere)". Stereogum. Retrieved 2013-11-05.
- Fisher, Jason (2013-11-13). "Nachtmystium Is No More". The Gauntlet. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
- Moore, Doug (2013-11-13). "Nachtmystium officially calls it quits in new statement". BrooklynVegan. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
- "NACHTMYSTIUM Is Over, Says BLAKE JUDD". Blabbermouth.net. 2013-11-13. Retrieved 2013-11-14.
- Staff, deafsparrow.com (2005). "Nachtmystium Interview". Deaf Sparrow Zine. Retrieved 2008-06-02.
- Bracelin, Jason (2008-07-16). "This Year Proving Good for Your Ears". Las Vegas Review-Journal (.redorbit.com). Retrieved 2008-07-16.
- "Nachtmystium join Opeth, High on Fire tour". The Gauntlet. 2008-07-30. Retrieved 2008-07-30.
- Ramirez, Carlos (2009-01-06). "10 Great Black Metal Albums". IGN. p. 5. Retrieved 2009-01-15.
- J. Bennett, Decibel, May 2006. "NSBM Special Report" Access date: September 18, 2008.
- Nachtmystium, February 2009. Myspace. Access date: February 27, 2008
- Nachtmystium website
- Nachtmystium MySpace Homepage
- Nachtmystium Century Media page
- Nachtmystium at discogs.com
- Nachtmystium at Exclaim
- Nachtmystium at X-PLOSIVE METAL