List of Viking metal bands

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Enslaved performing live at Roadburn Festival, April 2015

This is a list of Viking metal bands. Viking metal is a style of heavy metal music with origins in black metal and Nordic folk music, characterized by a lyrical and thematic focus on Norse mythology, Norse paganism, and the Viking Age. Viking metal is quite diverse as a musical style, to the point where some consider it more a cross-genre term than genre, but it is typically manifested as black metal with influences from Nordic folk music. Common traits include a slow-paced and heavy riffing style, anthemic choruses, use of both clean and harsh vocals, a reliance on folk instrumentation, and often the use of keyboards for atmospheric effect.

Viking metal emerged during the late-1980s through the mid-1990s as a rejection of Satanism and the occult, instead embracing the Vikings and paganism as the leaders of opposition to Christianity. It is similar, in lyrics, sound, and thematic imagery, to pagan metal, but pagan metal has a broader mythological focus and uses folk instrumentation more extensively. Most Viking metal bands originate from the Nordic countries, and nearly all bands claim that their members descend, directly or indirectly, from Vikings.

Though artists such as Led Zeppelin, Yngwie Malmsteen, Heavy Load, and Manowar have previously dealt with Viking themes, Bathory from Sweden is generally credited with pioneering the style with its albums Blood Fire Death (1988) and Hammerheart (1990), which launched a renewed interest in the Viking Age among heavy metal musicians. Enslaved, from Norway, followed up on this burgeoning Viking trend with Hordanes Land (1993) and Vikingligr Veldi (1994). Burzum, Emperor, Einherjer, and Helheim, among others, helped further develop the genre in the early through mid-1990s. Through the work of artists such as the German project Falkenbach, Viking metal soon spread from the Nordic countries to other nations with Viking history or an even broader Germanic heritage, and has since influenced musicians across the globe. The death metal bands Unleashed and Amon Amarth, which emerged in the early 1990s, also adopted Viking themes, broadening the style from its primarily black metal origin.

Band Formed Origin Notes
Adorned Brood 1993 Germany [1]
Ingeborg Anna Baumgärtel of Adorned Brood, 2007
Amon Amarth 1992 Sweden [2][3][4]
Ted Lundström of Amon Amarth
Ancient Rites 1988 Belgium [5]
Ásmegin 1998 Norway [6][7]
Barbariön 2007 Australia [8]
Barbariön, 2010
Bathory 1983 Sweden [9]
Black Messiah 1992 Germany [1]
Black Messiah, 2016
Blackmore's Night 1997 United Kingdom
United States
[10]
Borknagar 1995 Norway [11][12]
Burzum 1988 Norway [13]
Varg Vikernes of Burzum
Claim the Throne 2004 Australia [14]
Darkwoods My Betrothed 1992 Finland [15]
Destroy Destroy Destroy 2003 United States [16]
Doomsword 1997 Italy [17]
Drottnar 1996 Norway [18][19]
Sven-Erik Lind of Drottnar
Einherjer 1993 Norway [3]
Einherjer
Elexorien 2004 Netherlands [20]
Eluveitie 2002 Switzerland [21]
Eluveitie, 2012
Emperor 1991 Norway [22]
Ensiferum 1995 Finland [23]
Ensiferum, 2016
Enslaved 1991 Norway [3][24]
Ivar Bjørnson of Enslaved
Equilibrium 2001 Germany [25]
Jen Majura of Equilibrium
Falkenbach 1989 Germany [26]
Fejd 2001 Sweden [27]
Fejd, 2013
Finsterforst 2004 Germany [28]
Finsterforst
Folkearth 2003 International [29]
Folkodia 2007 International [30]
Forefather 1997 England [31]
Glittertind 2001 Norway [32]
Torbjørn Sandvik of Glittertind
Grand Magus 1996 Sweden [33]
Janne Christoffersson of Grand Magus
Heidevolk 2002 Netherlands [34]
Heidevolk
Hel 1999 Sweden [35]
Helheim 1992 Norway [36]
Holy Blood 1999 Ukraine [37]
Isengard 1989 Norway [38]
Fenris of Isengard, seen here in 2007
Ithilien 2005 Belgium [39]
Ithilien in 2016
Kampfar 1994 Norway [40]
Kampfar
Kivimetsän Druidi 2002 Finland [41]
Korpiklaani 2003 Finland [40]
Tuomas Rounakari of Korpiklaani
Leaves' Eyes 2003 Germany
Norway
[42]
Liv Kristine of Leaves' Eyes
Månegarm 1995 Sweden [43]
Mithotyn 1993 Sweden [44]
Myrkgrav 2003 Norway [45]
Myrkgrav logo
Moonsorrow 1995 Finland [46][47]
Ville Sorvali of Moonsorrow
Obscurity 1997 Germany [48]
Agalaz of Obscurity
Primordial 1987 Ireland [49]
Sabaton 1999 Sweden [50]
Joakim Brodén
Satyricon 1991 Norway [38]
Sigurd Wongraven "Satyr" of Satyricon, 2008
Skálmöld 2009 Iceland [51]
Björgvin Sigurðsson of Skálmöld
Skeletonwitch 2003 United States [52]
Scott Hendrick of Skeletonwitch
Slechtvalk 1999 Netherlands [37][53]
Slechtvalk
Solefald 1995 Norway [54]
Storm 1994 Norway [55]
Kari Rueslåtten of Storm, seen here with The Sirens, 2015
Svartsot 2005 Denmark [56]
Svartsot
The Sword 2003 United States [57]
J. D. Cronise of The Sword
Thyrfing 1995 Sweden [58][59][60]
Trollech 1999 Czech Republic [61]
Turisas 1997 Finland [62]
Warlord Nygård of Turisas
Týr 1998 Faroe Islands [63][64]
Heri Joensen of Týr
Unleashed 1989 Sweden [2][3][65]
Johnny Hedlund of Unleashed
Ulver 1993 Norway [38]
Kristoffer Rygg of Ulver, 2007
Vintersorg 1994 Sweden [66]
Windir 1994 Norway [67]
Wintersun 2003 Finland [68]
Wolfchant 2003 Germany [69]
Gvern of Wolfchant

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

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  2. ^ a b Kahn-Harris 2007, pp. 106
  3. ^ a b c d von Helden, Imke (2010). Rosemary Hill and Karl Spracklen, ed. "Scandinavian Metal Attack: The Power of Northern Europe in Extreme Metal" (PDF). Inter-Disciplinary Press: 34. Retrieved October 28, 2014. 
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  10. ^ Van Horn, Jr., Ray (n.d.). "Blackmore's Night - A Knight in York". Blabbermouth.net. Roadrunner Records. Retrieved January 3, 2017. 
  11. ^ Weinstein, pg. 60.
  12. ^ Freeborn 2010, pg. 846.
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  14. ^ Giffin, Brian (2002). Encyclopaedia of Australian Heavy Metal. Bendigo: Moonlight Publications. p. 2051. ISBN 978-0-9943206-1-2. 
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  36. ^ Hoad 2013, pg. 63.
  37. ^ a b Beck, Chris. "The Patriot review". HM. Archived from the original on 2012-03-18. Retrieved 2009-11-04.  "Compared to their first two albums, The Patriot is slightly heavier and has a stronger Viking metal influence a la Slechtvalk."
  38. ^ a b c Dare, Tom (December 28, 2014). "There's more to folk metal than warpaint and the hurdy gurdy". Metal Hammer. Teamrock. Retrieved January 3, 2017. 
  39. ^ METALGLORY, Tomektor. "METALGLORY Magazine - Reviews - From Ashes To The Frozen Land CD Review Rezension". www.metalglory.de. Retrieved 2017-03-13. 
  40. ^ a b Bowar, Chad. "Kvass review". About.com. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  41. ^ Hoad 2013, pg. 64.
  42. ^ Freeman, Phil. "Njord". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 5 March 2012. 
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  45. ^ Kalis, Quentin (April 2, 2007). "Myrkgrav - _Trollskau, Skromt Og Kolabrenning_". Chronicles of Chaos. Retrieved January 3, 2017. 
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  47. ^ "Moonsorrow". About.com. Retrieved June 2010.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  48. ^ Observer (24 December 2010). "Obscurity - Tenkterra". Sputnikmusic. Retrieved 5 March 2012. 
  49. ^ Palmerston, Sean (January 26, 2008). "Primordial - To The Nameless Dead". Exclaim!. Ian Danzig. Retrieved May 10, 2015. 
  50. ^ Gränshagen, Ola. "Sabaton - The art of war". Melodic.net. Pär Winberg and Johan Wippsson. Retrieved May 11, 2015. 
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  52. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Skeletonwitch". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 5 March 2012. 
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  54. ^ Taylor, Laura Wiebe (February 27, 2007). "Solefald - Black for Death: An Icelandic Odyssey Part II". Exclaim!. Ian Danzig. Retrieved May 10, 2015. 
  55. ^ Sharpe-Young, Garry. "Storm". MusicMight. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  56. ^ Woolley, Ellis (March 21, 2010). "Svartsot - Mulmets Viser". Rockfreaks.net. Retrieved January 3, 2017. 
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  59. ^ Serba, John. "Vansinnesvisor review". Allmusic. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  60. ^ Bowar, Chad. "Hels Vite review". About.com. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  61. ^ Born, R. "Trollech". MusicMight. Retrieved 4 March 2012. 
  62. ^ Bowar, Chad. "The Varangian Way review". About.com. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  63. ^ Monger, James Christopher. "Týr". Allmusic. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  64. ^ Bowar, Chad. "Eric the Red review". About.com. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  65. ^ Bowar, Chad. "Hammer Battalion review". About.com. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
  66. ^ Walschots, Natalie Zina (July 9, 2012). "Vintersorg - Orkan". Exclaim!. Retrieved January 3, 2017. 
  67. ^ Sharpe-Young, Garry. "Windir". MusicMight. Retrieved 2009-03-13. 
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