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Slechtvalk at Occultfest 2010
Slechtvalk at Occultfest 2010
Background information
Also known asDommer
OriginThe Hague, Netherlands
GenresUnblack metal, extreme metal
Years active1999–present
LabelsWhirlwind Records (2009)
Fear Dark Records (2000–2008)
Associated actsHeidevolk, Argonath
Ohtar (Jesse Vuerbaert)
Past membersHydrith

Slechtvalk (the Dutch word for peregrine falcon) is a Christian black metal band from the Netherlands, formed in 1999. Previously signed to Fear Dark Records and currently to Whirlwind Records, the group has released five albums, a split-CD with Kekal, a single and a DVD. The second album, The War That Plagues the Lands, reached No. 2 at Lowland's Top 50 Metal Charts. The third album, At the Dawn of War, coincided with the release of a live-DVD, Upon the Fields of Battle, a maxi single for "Thunder of War", and was named one of HM Magazine's "100 best Christian metal albums of all time". The band's fifth album, Where Wandering Shadows and Mists Collide, was released on December 20, 2016.



Frontman Shamgar at Fear Dark Fest 2008

Slechtvalk began as a solo project in 1997 by singer/guitarist Shamgar, formerly of Ascension and Mordax.[1] The project was first called Dommer (1999–2000), before Shamgar finally settled on Slechtvalk. The debut album, Falconry, was released in 2000 by the now-defunct Dutch label Fear Dark which had bands such as Eluveitie, Royal Anguish, Taketh and Kekal on its roster.

Falconry was received positively,[1] and Dutch metal magazines such as Aardschok interviewed Shamgar. As a result of this exposure, Shamgar was in the position to form a band, and was joined by soprano singer Fionnghuala, folk singer and rhythm guitarist Ohtar (also with Dutch folk metal band Heidevolk), bassist Nath, drummer Grimbold, keyboardist Sorgier, and dancer Meallá.[1]

The War That Plagues the Lands[edit]

Guitarist Seraph, Occultfest 2010

In 2002, Slechtvalk released their second full-length album, The War That Plagues the Lands. As a teaser they first released a split CD with Kekal from Indonesia (also signed on Fear Dark);[1][2][3] each band recorded four songs and a cover (Slechtvalk covered Antestor's "Kongsblod", from The Return of the Black Death). The War That Plagues the Lands was well received.

At the Dawn of War[edit]

Premnath at Occultfest 2010

In 2005, the band released their third album, At the Dawn of War, with a more symphonic sound and elements of folk metal. The band also incorporated more war and fantasy themes to their live shows and began dressing in medieval warrior costumes. That same year Slechtvalk released a live-DVD, Upon the Fields of Battle, filmed at the club Hedon Zwolle; a music video for "Thunder of War" (also released as a maxi single) received some airplay at local music channels. The band toured several European countries with Frosthardr. In 2010, HM Magazine listed At the Dawn of War as number 60 on its "100 best Christian metal albums of all time".[4]

During early 2006 the band was joined by Grimbold's brother Seraph as a guitarist, as Ohtar was not able to continue playing the guitars due to a chronic wrist injury. In July 2006, Fionnghuala left the group to focus on her classical music career. Slechtvalk began writing new material and announced that the music would take a more technical and brutal approach.

In February 2007, the bassist Nath was removed from the line-up: Ohtar, who was able to play again, picked up on bass. In late 2007, keyboard-player Hydrith announced his departure to focus more on his family. Since then, Slechtvalk performed without keyboards (playing their more extreme songs) or with session-musicians.

A Forlorn Throne[edit]

On April 2009, the band signed with German-based Whirlwind Records. In October 2009, Whirlwind released a compilation album of the band's past material titled An Era of Bloodshed with two unreleased promotional songs.[5] Nath—now known as Premnath—re-joined the band as a keyboard-player. The band did a European tour to promote the new album. The tour came to life through financial support from fans, for which the band asked via[6] The band went to Sweden's Studio Mega in late 2009 with producer Johan "the ant" Örnborg to record their fourth full-length album titled A Forlorn Throne. It was mixed and mastered by Jens Bogren at Fascination Street, and the cover artwork as well as a new logo was designed by Raymond Swanland.[7]

Where Wandering Shadows and Mists Collide[edit]

In 2014, the band released pre-orders for their upcoming album. After that there was no more information until 2016, when the band released a lyric video for the new song "We Are", announcing the album, Where Wandering Shadows and Mists Collide, would be released on December the 20th of the same year.[8] The Metal Archives concluded their review of the album with “It partly slays, but can also get so darn generic” and gave it a rating of 67%.[9] This is in line with Metal Exposures rating of 7 out of 10.[10]


In addition to local shows in the Netherlands, Slechtvalk has appeared at several heavy metal music festivals such as Elements of Rock in Switzerland,[11] Bobfest in Sweden,[3] Nordic Fest in Norway,[12] and Interregnum Fest in Germany.[13]


Ohtar and Shamgar live at Fear Dark Festival 2008.
Current members
  • Shamgar (Mark Geertsema) – lead vocals, guitar (2000–present), bass, drums, keyboards (2000-2002)
  • Seraph (Jos Lucas) – guitar (2010–present)
  • Ohtar (Jesse Vuerbaert) – vocals (2011–present), guitar, backing vocals (2002-2011) (does not tour)
  • Premnath (Premnath Gonesh) – keyboards (2010–present), bass (2002-2010)
  • Dagor (Nick van Liempd) – bass (2011–present)
  • Hamar(Joël de Jong) – drums (2017–present)
Former members
  • Hydrith – keyboards (2005-2007)
  • Fionnghuala – soprano (2002-2010)
  • Sorgier – keyboards (2002-2010)
  • Grimbold (Jan-Paul Lucas) – drums, backing vocals (2002-2017)[14]



Other releases[edit]

  • Chaos & Warfare (split-CD with Kekal, 2002 Fear Dark Records)[2]
  • Upon the Fields of Battle (DVD, 2005 Fear Dark Records)
  • Thunder of War (CD-single, 2005 Fear Dark Records)
  • An Era of Bloodshed (compilation album, 2009)
  • We Are (single, 2016)


  1. ^ a b c d Born, R. "Slechtvalk". MusicMight. Archived from the original on 16 September 2012. Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  2. ^ a b Kekal. "Kekal Discography". Retrieved 2011-03-04.
  3. ^ a b "Bobfest V - Bands". Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  4. ^ Van Pelt, Doug (August 2010). "Top 100 Christian metal albums of all time" (pdf). HM Magazine: 25. ISSN 0161-973X.
  5. ^ "Slechtvalk kommen an Bord!". Whirlwind Records. 2009-04-17. Archived from the original on 2009-05-10.
  6. ^ "'Slechtvalk' now on 'Sellaband'". The Metal Resource.
  7. ^ "New 'Slechtvalk' Band Logo". The Metal Resource. March 27, 2010.
  8. ^ Beard, Mason (November 28, 2016). "Slechtvalk - We Are". Indie Vision Music. Retrieved November 28, 2016.
  9. ^ "The Metal Archives review of Where Wandering Shadows and Mists Collide". Retrieved 8 October 2020.
  10. ^ "Slechtvalk – Where Wandering Shadows and Mists Collide". Retrieved 8 October 2020.
  11. ^ "VENI DOMINE Confirmed For Switzerland's ELEMENTS OF ROCK Festival". Roadrunner Records. 13 December 2003. Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  12. ^ "TOURNIQUET Confirmed For Norway's NORDIC FEST". Roadrunner Records. 22 September 2008. Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  13. ^ "ARTHAUN, GRABAK Confirmed For Germany's INTERREGNUM FEST". Roadrunner Records. 30 October 2007. Retrieved 8 June 2011.
  14. ^ "'Slechtvalk' Drummer 'Grimbold' to Quit After 17 Years, Seeking Replacement". The Metal Resource. May 11, 2017. Retrieved February 11, 2018.
  • Meelhuysen, Vincent (2004). The Encyclopedia of Dutch Black Metal. Rotterdam. pp. 89–90.

External links[edit]